The Year of the Panel

Halfway through 2021, I decided to take some panels and sew and quilt them up in non-traditional ways.

What’s the traditional way? A border around a panel, perhaps a pieced border, is the most common. You can also do a window effect on a panel which is quite nice, especially for nature-themed panels.

The Panel Series was inspired by finding a hand-dyed batik panel that was a gift from one of brothers over 30 years ago. He purchased this in Senegal following his Peace Corps service and gave me these before I ever thought of making quilts or learned FMQ. I took the panel and added applique borders and a flange.

Here is the project that inspired the series:

Next was a small border panel square that grew into a table topper. All the elements were destined for my Deliciously Blue quilt, but were leftover after it was completed. Orphans no more!

Then came my 2021 big project, comprised of clam shells around a panel, using all Kaufman Klimt fabrics including the panel. The design is based on Esther Aliu’s Shelly pattern.

Wrapping up the old year, and starting the new one, is this Autumn-themed wall hanging that uses elements of the Esther Aliu Red Delicious pattern interspersed with a panel showing birch trees in bright gold tones. This was a personal color challenge as well! I try to do at least one project each year in colors that I don’t normally use to stretch the creative muscle. Autumn is my favorite season and I started this in the fall of 2021, but holiday projects put it on the back burner.

It is composed of the panel and some related fat quarters along with a Jason Yenter fat quarter, a Klimt charm square, and some silk scraps. Mode Grunge metallic dots in gold is used for the sashing and binding. The panel is deconstructed and split between the two sides of the piece, with one section cut out and appliquéd onto a taupe Mode Grunge metallic using MonoPoly for the quilting.

25″ x 35″ Autum wallhanging with sleeve for hanging.
Deconstructed aspen panel.
Silk heart! Also used silk thread for the background quilting
on this square.

Machine applique using variegated thread, solid golds and solid brown thread, and two different metallic threads bring additional autumn tones to the piece.

Silk inserts in the vase for shimmer!
Feather wide border using Superior Threads Magnifico
and metallic threads.

Are there more panel? Never say never (except about making an Irish Chain). Time will tell.

Happy quilting all!



  1. How I enjoy dropping in Lennea, I keep learning from you each blog. DO like the close up photos so I can see how you do your machine magic. Love how you manage to step out of the Box for your projects. Just love walking in to the forest with you! Cheers Glenda Australia.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi, I love to read about your sewing even though I get to see them being made you are an inspiration love how you think when doing them.
    It makes me want to do better and I learn from them x

    Liked by 1 person

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