Wednesday, May 5, 2021

A wonderful Memory Quilt

     This blog is not about a quilt I made, but one that my sister, Alison, made for my mom and dad years ago.  Today would have been my mother's 92nd birthday, and I thought it was appropriate to celebrate her by showing off this quilt.  

     Alison made it, I believe, for an anniversary, and it hung in their home for years.  She used lots of fun fabrics in various blues and yellows - a color scheme to which my mother was very partial.  She took old photos and copied them onto fabric, and created a wonky frame around each and then tied the quilt.  

     The pictures provide such a fun glimpse of the past.  There are pictures of my mom as a baby, as a child and as a young woman and then mother, along with pictures of her mother and father and grandmother, and of me and my sisters and our dad.  Really, my mom was quite the glamorous woman! 

     This picture ran on the front page of the local paper where my mom worked.  She looked so cute, but was wearing her sister's coat, without permission!  Busted!  

      We threw a big party for my mom for her 90th birthday, which she thoroughly enjoyed.  I am so glad we did so, because by the next birthday, she was gone.  She is sorely missed, but I am thankful for the long lifetime of memories.  

Take care,


Thursday, April 15, 2021

A "Wanda" quilt for Cousin Kathleen

     After seeing many beautiful finished "Wanda" quilts from the pattern by Gundrun Erla from her Stripology Mixology 2 book, I decided I needed to get the book and give this quilt a try.    I also knew  that this quilt would be gifted to my cousin, Kathleen, from Louisville, KY.  Kathleen is actually my mother's first cousin, but is closer in age to me.   She was like an out-of-town big sister to me.   I have wonderful memories of visiting her when I was in college, and having such a ball with her, her friends, and her brother!  When she was once visiting, she chaperoned a middle school sleep over of probably nearly a dozen girls.  With the gift of hindsight, and my own daughter's middle school years long past, I realize what a good sport Kathleen was!  
     I especially enjoy the making process when I know who is going to be the recipient of a quilt, because I tend to think of them as I work my way through the cutting, sewing and quilting process.  
     What is great about this pattern is that it uses 5-inch squares with very little waste.  I had a drawer full of 5-inch squares and pulled out all the ones in my chosen color scheme of purples and blues (with some pinks mixed in).  I supplemented with squares cut from some 5-inch strips and 10-inch pieces as well.      
     Some of the squares were sewn together blocks from some other project, so out came the seam ripper to give them another life. 

     The colors didn't photograph well on my design wall.  While most of the colors do have a muted tone (none are screamingly bright), the colors are clearer than it appears on the wall.  The pictures I took outside (above and below) are more accurate. 
     Since I was trying to use my existing fabric, I used various scraps for the sashing, combining those with some cloud fabric that I had that I never particularly liked until I cut it up for this quilt.  Suddenly it was the perfect fabric for the job!

    Unfortunately, the cloud fabric had been in my stash for many years, and I realized (after I created the sashing), that I didn't have enough to make a border.  I thought about using a solid, but nothing really worked for me, so I ended up ordering what looked like similar cloud fabric to use as a wider border.  The new fabric ended up being brighter than the sashing fabric, so I used a purple solid as a narrow border to separate the two similar, but different cloud fabrics.   This is a tweak to the original pattern, but I think it works just fine.   

     Betty was a big help when I was sewing on the narrow purple strip!  
     I wanted this quilt to be a soft and supple lap quilt for Kathleen, and so did some big loopy-loop quilting all over the top.    A blue Aurifil thread worked nicely for the job.

    I pieced together some bright pink and white floral for the back, and used the same blue ditsy floral print that I used for the tiny blocks in the sashing for the binding.  
     I am very happy with how this turned out.  I really like the topsy-turvy nature of the blocks.  It is a quilt that seems to be happy and have lots of energy.  I was so pleased to hear from Kathleen that she loves it!  

     I realize that I have recently made a number of Gundren quilts.  Maybe the long year at home looking at and admiring all the quilts from on-line quilters inspired me!   I will soon be posting about a Lexi quilt I made for my very soon to be daughter-in-law last June for her birthday  (I didn't get great photos before I gave it to her - so I hope to get some pictures during an upcoming visit), and a small Roxanne quilt I tried before embarking on a larger version which is underway. 
      I am enjoying this spring, and am so hopeful about this summer.  I am so glad that I had quilting as one of my creative outlets for this past year! 
Take care,