Saturday, July 2, 2016

Uchangamfu Finished

Hi all -

I'm excited to say that my African dance quilt is finished! Well, almost finished. I still need to add the hanging sleeve and label (as usual....), but I'll get those on this weekend. Here is a picture of the finished quilt:

I love it! I decided to call it Uchangamfu, which is Swahili for "exuberance" (at least that's what Google tells me).

This was made from the pattern Dance by Wendy Mamattah in the September 2015 issue of American Quilter magazine. The background fabric is a hand-dye that I made in a class many years ago. I used a Cherrywood hand-dye for the figures and assorted African fabrics for the dresses, the border, the backing and the binding. I used YLI invisible thread for outlining/quilting the figures and Superior SoFine for the rest of the quilting.

For the background quilting, I started by quilting a sun in the corner:

I got that idea from the sample in the magazine where she quilted a small sun in the center above the figures. I then quilted pebbles to represent the ground below the figures:

And some other quilting to represent the sky in the rest of the background:

I quilted wavy piano keys in the border just to hold everything down. And I was lucky to find the perfect backing fabric in my stash of African fabrics:

 Again, I'm really pleased with how this turned out and think my niece will be thrilled when she gets it for Christmas!

I've also been doing some knitting. I made another hat from that lovely blue and green variegated yarn:

This is from the Ups and Downs Hat pattern by Emily Dormier that I found on Ravelry. It's a bit hard to see in my picture, but this hat has a cool chevron pattern knitted into it. I really like how it turned out and will probably make another one in a solid yarn to show off the texture at some point. I decided to make this hat because I had two skeins of the yarn and started a scarf with the leftovers from the previous skein after making that hat. I had about half a scarf done when I ran out of yarn so I decided to make another hat out of the other skein so that I could just knit the scarf until I ran out of yarn so I don't have any leftovers sitting around when I'm done. The scarf is turning out pretty cool, too. I should have that one done in time for my next post.

The columbine are blooming right now so I thought I'd share a couple of pictures from our morning hikes. Here is one little group of columbine:

Aren't they beautiful? And here's my obligatory picture of Lance saying "Hurry up!!":

Hopefully, that will satisfy the Lance fans since I never got around to taking a picture of him in the hat.....

Happy 4th everyone!



  1. Wow Nancy Uchangamfu looks fabulous! Really like everything about it, your niece will be thrilled.

    Great hat pattern too. We're travelling this fall might be nice to make that hat.

    Barb :-)

    1. Thanks! It's a nice and quick hat pattern. I would definitely recommend it.

  2. Uchangamfu is wonderful! Wendy was a speaker at our guild a number of years ago. . .she lives in my area and from time to time I see her. What a fun project!--Terry

    1. Thanks! How lucky you are to know Wendy. Her work is incredible!

  3. Your niece's quilt is great. I'm sure she'll love it! And what an interesting concept... starting and actually finishing a Christmas gift in June/July!!? I was under the impression that it's illegal or impossible to start before mid December. I'll have to think about this.

    kfstitcher Karen Fitzpatrick

    1. Thanks! Usually my June/July work is finishing up girts from LAST Christmas! Decided to try something new.....