Dragonfly Dreams Becomes a Reality

Hey everyone! I’m back at it in the studio today after a nice weekend hanging out with my family and relaxing at home. I’ve been working on putting the final touches on projects I’m trying to wrap up, along with getting all my ducks in a row to start some new ones. It always feels so good to finish a project that I’ve put my blood, sweat, and tears into. There’s a huge sense of accomplishment and satisfaction (along with a bit of relief) when I’m finally able to send one of my quilts out into the world. As you know, no matter their size stitching projects can certainly be a lot of work… not to mention time-consuming! That’s why one of the biggest rewards of making a quilt is finally reaching that finishing stitch.

Out of everything I’ve been working on I’m especially proud of Dragonfly Dreams,” an ongoing project from one of my previous subscription wool boxes. I’ve been working on Dragonfly Dreams for quite some time now – just about two years to be exact (that’s 12 wool boxes)! It was designed based on an antique that Jess found at one of the antique quilt shows we attended together a few years ago. She saw the quilt first and immediately came to find me – full well knowing it would be love at first sight the minute I laid eyes on it. In hindsight, as soon as Jess so firmly insisted that I go take a look at the quilt, I should have known it would be coming home with me. Needless to say, I didn’t have to “look” very long before it was being packaged up.

If you know me at all you know that some of the things I am most passionate about in life are my antique quilts – especially when I find one that I know is special. I love to look at them and imagine their possibilities. By possibilities I’m referring to when I look at the design or pattern of something and think, how can I make this again but different…and better? I am well aware of the limited supplies stitchers had to work with back in the old days and I will never stop appreciating it. There were no fancy machines or computers. They used what little they had and still were still able to accomplish some amazing quilts.

I find so much joy and inspiration from these historic antique heirlooms that I’ve managed to accumulate over 800 of them in my personal collection. They not only get my creative juices flowing when I look at them, but I also simply just like to be around them. The antique I based Dragonfly Dreams on is very old. Its has a beautiful and unique design featuring a floral motif that is all embroidered with some garish colors of thread. As soon as I saw this old gem my imagination went wild, and the idea Dragonfly Dreams for was born. I knew I wanted to do something a lot like it because I love the outdoors and have a certain affection for flora and wildlife. What a perfect way to pay tribute to both nature, and to quilters of times past than with a remake of such a beautiful classic?

My love of flowers and garden creatures comes alive in the 49 blocks of Dragonfly Dreams.” The blocks are simple, straightforward, and all fun to stitch in their own way. Much like the original quilt, this version features an array of flowers with the addition of a winged critter here and there.

One of the things I like most about the antique version is the crazy stitching between the blocks. As you can see I kept the style going in Dragonfly Dreams.” Just how crazy you want to get with your embellishments is up to you. You can add a lot to your blocks, or just a little according to what you like. I know it looks like a lot of stitching and like it would take a lot of time, but I have news for you – it really doesn’t! In fact, if you’re looking for a great way to improve your embellishment skills, this project is a great choice. Trust me, you become super efficient after stitching the same thing over and over again a bazillion times…and the best part is, you’re done before you even know what happened!

Despite the similarities between the two quilts, you can see some obvious differences as well. Considering that we are blessed with so many more thread and wool varieties now than in years past, the doors to color and design choice are pretty much wide open in comparison. As you can see, I took from some of the original artist’s design and style, but I also added a lot of my own to really help the quilt come to life in a new way. In addition, modern technology and the talented machine quilters of today add another layer of awesomeness to this quilt that would never have been able to be accomplished years ago.Special thanks to Wendy Fuller, the amazing quilter who helped make this beautiful quilt the work of art it is today. I couldn’t have done it without her! After accomplishing something as different and unique as Dragonfly Dreams I am always brimming with satisfaction. Obviously, stitching a few blocks of a quilt at a time can create a beautiful work of art, but for me the real satisfaction is the connection I feel with the person who stitched the original. My quilts are my way of honoring them and their talents.

So what do you think? Is this your next big project on deck? Let me know in the comments if you plan to do this project or if you already have it proudly out on display. Don’t let its beauty fool you! It really is a fun and easy quilt – especially if you love to hand stitch and appreciate minimal piecing. Plus at 60″ x 60″, it’s not an overly huge quilt, yet still large enough to be functional. Annnnd just so you know, right now if you purchase the kit for Dragonfly Dreams the pattern is included in the kit price (you’re welcome)! 🙂 Note: Dragonfly Dreams is still a pre-order but as of today we anticipate that it should ship by March, 2023 which gives you plenty of time to get it done for spring or summer décor. You can get everything you need to get started on your own version of Dragonfly Dreams by clicking the button below!Like I mentioned above, Dragonfly Dreams was originally and ongoing project from one of my past Wool Box Subscription boxes. If you’re a fan of working with wool but haven’t yet checked these awesome boxes out, I highly recommend that you do before we fill completely up! Wool Boxes are released every other month and focus primarily on wool and stitchery. They contain as close as we can get to $100 worth of wool-based goodies, and are made up of all new projects that have not been previously released. Projects include at least one major project kit and pattern, a pattern for an ongoing project, novelties, and more! Our Wool Boxes consist mostly of Primitive Gatherings products and patterns, but we may also have guest designers and products as well in future boxes. I know you’re interested… Here are the details:

  • Projects are 40% OFF retail value!
  • PG Wool Boxes will be charged the 15th of the month and will be shipped after the billing cycle.
  • The price of each box will be $72 which includes shipping (international orders are required by customs to have protective shipping materials and will be charged at $83 per box including the cost of shipping).
  • Boxes will ship every other month starting in January. Subscriptions will continue until you email us and request to cancel.
  • PLEASE NOTE: when canceling your subscription, you will still receive the next box in the line up. After that box your subscription will be canceled.

Ready to sign up? It’s easy! All you have to do is click the link below to get started…These boxes really are a great deal when you consider how much you’re saving in the long run. If you’re still having doubts all you have to do is ask someone who’s taken the plunge before and they’ll tell you! The reviews truly speak for themselves.

Well everyone, I hope your day went well. Have you noticed the days are getting longer all of a sudden? As I’m sitting here wrapping things up for the evening I can’t help but notice how bright and sunny it still is outside. Amazing, since only a couple of short months ago (not even) it was just about fully dark by this time of day. Not to mention it’s been pretty dreary otherwise so it’s a nice change of scenery. Spring is definitely on the way folks! Not sure I’m ready to put away my skis for the season quite yet, but sometimes Mother Nature makes the choice for us… What can you do? Anyway, have a great evening and I will see you later this week. Until then, you have one assignment – stitch every day. No excuses! I know you can do it… See you soon! ~Lisa

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lisabongean

I live on a lake in beautiful Butte Des Morts, WI. I have three sons: Lance (forever 29), Luke 33, Jake 32, and two grand-babies, Little Man and O-Bug. I've been married to the love of my life Nick, since 1998 when we started our crazy adventure together! I am a quilter, rugger, and gardener. I also love to cook when I get the chance. Thanks for visiting and supporting Primitive Gathering Quilt Shop where I try to bring you the best Moda fabrics and wool projects anywhere!

52 thoughts on “Dragonfly Dreams Becomes a Reality

  1. I have all my DD blocks stitched and am just starting the “dreaded” part of sewing it together. Doing it in smaller chunks as part of the Wool Box made me commit to making it my first ever quilt. I probably would have been too afraid if it were presented to me as a whole project all at once! I’m interested in suggestions of how it could be quilted since this too is new to me. I can’t tell from online how yours was done. I belong to a local fiber group (mostly knitters) and the one quilter there told me there was no way a long armer would touch it and it would need to be hand quilted. I don’t buying that and am not going there! Any suggestions that you can post or cover in a video would be appreciated. I appreciate your creativity. keep it coming! Thank you.

  2. All the Dragonfly Dream blocks are complete and rows sewn together. Now to the embroidery between the blocks (actually still deciding if I rally want to do that). Anyone have an opinion on that?

    1. I was on the fence about that also—thought maybe it was tooooo busy. I did dive in and actually made my herringbone a little smaller, and tighter. It will b
      e beautiful either way.

  3. I get the Wool boxes and love them! I haven’t started Dragonfly Dreams yet, but it is waiting for me! So many things to do! I’m trying very hard to follow through with your advice to “stitch every day”! Thanks for all you do!

  4. I like the antique quilt you based Dragonfly Dreams from, and love working on it! Have a few more blocks to do before I can start to put it together, but I have to say I truly love this one. And can’t wait to start working on Fresh Cut Garden in the current Wool Box Subscription! Thanks Lisa for sharing your creativity with all of us!

  5. The original is stunning. I’m always in awe of the effort involved without the tools, threads & fabrics we have access to today. Your Dragonfly Dreams is just as stunning!

  6. When I first saw Dragonfly Dreams in my Wool Box my first thought was here’s another one I am going to love! And I was right. Still working on the crazy stitches but the end is in sight. Determined to finish before starting Fresh Cut Garden. Your design talent brings so many of us stitchers so much joy. Thank you.

  7. Dragonfly Dreams and your antique quilt are both gorgeous!!! I am trying to work up the nerve to join the Wool Box……..I have never worked with wool and think this would be an awesome introduction. If I joined now, would I also get the January box?

    1. Hi Patty! When you place your order to join please let them know you’d like past boxes in the order comment section. They will charge you per pas order. If you have any questions, please give Joanne or Roz a call at 920-722-7233 and they will be able to help!!!

  8. I haven’t completed DD and now I have the great distraction of the new 24 month project! What a dilemma to have, I’m blessed.
    Thank you for preserving beautiful artifacts from the past while reimagining them so that we can leave beautiful quilts as our own legacy.
    BTW, I don’t think those thread colors are in the least bit garish, they’re just not neutral! Definitely not neutral. But lovely.

  9. I am on block 3 if Dragonfly. I already smile as I stitch because the motifs are so pretty and peaceful.

  10. I just love the wool boxes such a treat every other month. I haven’t started stitching Dragonfly Dreams but have a few blocks ready to be stitched. I have way to many projects in the process. Just a lovely quilt and what a stitchers challenge. Thank you

  11. Why don’t you hang all of your beloved antique quilts in the Gathering. You can call it: A stitch back in time. People would love to see the display.

  12. I’ve been in the Wool Box Club from the beginning. I’m just in awe with each and every box. They just keep getting better with gorgeous designs. Thank you for all your hard work.

  13. I’m finally starting Dragonfly Dreams when I go on quilt retreat in Washington next week. Looking forward to starting this project. Thanks for your inspiration and design.

  14. I have a lot of stitching ahead to finish my Dragonfly Dreams. Yours is truly a work of art!! The antique quilt is gorgeous! Such an inspiration from so long ago. It would be a dream to look back in time and observe these stitchers work their magic….and no fancy supplies!! Thank you Lisa and PG staff for your recreations and hard work! Take Care!

  15. I have 3 more blocks to finish, then I will stitch rows together & quilt it.
    The blocks were fun to do. Friends I have shown it to are amazed at all the stitching. Will be good to get this one finished & move onto Fresh cut flowers. Thanks for putting together the wool box 😊

  16. Some of my favorite quilts have come from the Wool Box subscription. Having been in the subscription box since day one, I always love seeing and getting the new patterns/kits first!
    My Dragonfly Dreams is in progress and I am very excited about the newest one, Fresh Cut Garden.
    So appreciate your talents, Lisa!

  17. Dragonfly dreams is incredible! Twilight garden is on deck for me, but I would love to do Dragonfly dreams as well.

  18. LOVE LOVE LOVE Dragonfly Dream!!!
    It’s as gorgeous as Twilight Garden!!
    I do want to make it 💕
    What an incredible design and an honour to the original maker.

  19. I loved reading about your journey finding the antique quilt that inspired Dragonfly Dreams, and especially enjoyed the photos of that antique quilt. You created an amazing project. Although I only have the last two wool boxes in that series, I have enough to create a smaller version. This post has inspired me. Thank you!

  20. I’m working on stitching my last 5 blocks. I’m so excited to be nearing the completion of this beautiful two year project. Thank you Lisa for your creativity.

  21. I am a beginning member of the Wool Box! Everlasting was the first 2 year project! Currently finishing Dragonfly Dreams–working on the outside border now—going a little dizzy with lazy dazy!!

  22. It is a beautiful quilt. I have been working on it for the last two years. I have to admit some of the blocks were a little intimidating to start. But once I started stitching the blocks I changed my mind. It’s amazing how the stitching brings them to life. Thank you for sharing this beautiful design.

  23. I just finished my 49th block, I really miss stitching on these every evening, but soon I’ll be stitching the embellishing. I ADORE this quilt and I will be excited to start Fresh Cut Garden. Thanks Lisa for such great works of art.

  24. Your quilts are always amazing, I myself will not be doing Dragonfly Dreams right now, concentrating on the new Flower Garden. I love doing the boxes each month and cannot wait till the 20th of each month. My only regret is wishing for the 20th is wishing away time also!! 🙂
    PG is an amazing place to follow….
    Carrie D

  25. I have all the beautiful dragonfly dreams blocks done and sewn together. Ready to start the herringbone stitches between my blocks. I am also working on the borders of Twilight Garden, Pumpkin Carving Contest and just finished block one of Fresh Cut Garden.

  26. I currently have the beautiful blocks of Dragonfly Dreams done and sewn together. Getting ready to start the herringbone stitches between the blocks. I go back and forth between quilts. I am also working on the borders of Twilight Garden, on row 5 of Pumpkin Carving Contest and just finished block one of Fresh Cut Garden.

  27. Working on finishing Twilight Garden right now. I have all the Dragonfly Dreams blocks put together ready to stitch. Definitely the next project on deck! (I try to keep up with the wool box project by assembling the blocks each time and hold them until I am ready to stitch the project!)

  28. I’m working on my dragon fly dreams! It is soooo beautiful. I’ve switched out one color and will put a block up in the PG box Facebook page soon. Thanks for the beautiful design! I do have one question – do you use frey chek? or similar? I have been using it but sometimes it makes it have a rough edge and just wondering if I need it?

    1. Hi Karen! In my opinion, the only time you really need is if you’re using loose-weave wool. I recommend never using it on dark-colored wools. We do sometimes use Fray Check when we put wool appliqué onto cotton. In this case, you would Fray Check the edges of your background to prevent fraying on the edges of the fabric while you’re handling it. I hope this helps! ~Lisa

  29. I’m just getting started on my dragonfly dreams! Such a beautiful project. Love all the embroidery. One question – do you use frey chek or similar on the wool prior to stitching?

  30. I’m just now putting the rows together on DD and doing the handstitching between them. I love this project and even though your antique one is similar and beautiful, yours is stunning. I have to think that 100 years from now, your quilt will be an antique. Who will have it? A family member I’m hoping. But, whoever ends up with it, I’m sure it will be cherished. My father-in-law passed last year, and we have been cleaning and going through things. I found two beautiful old quilts – both handstitched and quilted by hand. No labels on either to say who made them and it’s a shame not to know if it’s a distant relative.

  31. Dragonfly Dreams is a beautiful quilt but if I was able to do it (unfortunately it doesn’t fit into my time frame) I would be tempted to use colored threads as seen in the original. 800 antique quilts, wow. I agree with another comment it would be exciting to see your collection. A book showing the original & your interpretation with your thoughts would be more than a coffee table book but inspire fellow quilters.

  32. I love this quilt. I will not be doing this right now however. I have started the Fresh Cut Gardens and am also in the Quilt box. I have really overcommitted myself but it brings me great joy. I love seeing everyones posts and updates!

  33. I don’t have these time to participate in the wool boxes every other month. But I can’t tell you how much I appreciate and enjoy the summertime Christmas box and the gift box around Christmas. They are always full of beautiful projects that keep me busy. Thank you for your beautiful designs!

  34. Dragonfly Dreams is beautiful! You should be proud of the design and finishing all the stitching!

  35. I love the pictures of both the antique and new dragonfly quilts. I am anxiously awaiting the pattern so i can make one of my own.

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