None of the women in my family quilted. My grandmother was an amazing sewer/seamstress, but she did not quilt. Apparently my great-great-grandmother quilted (I have a hexagon quilt she made when my father was born on our bed right now), but I did not know she quilted until earlier this year. But, my childhood neighbor (nearly like an aunt to me) did quilt. I did not realize she did until I was an adult, and she made beautiful quilts for each of our daughters when they were born. Those quilts are still on their beds. Nita inspired me with her beautiful, artistic quilts. She also encouraged me to try an quilt, lending me books to read about it. But, I have been very slow to get into quilting, feeling it was a bit too overwhelming of a project to launch into – it seemed to take lots of planning, fabric, steps, and precision.
Then, just after Christmas, I was at a slight loss about what to sew next. There were a few projects I wanted to do, but I was without one of the machines I needed/wanted for the project (it is being repaired) and I didn’t really have the desire to fish out fabrics to experiment with for other projects. I really wanted to reduce the fabric stash I have, seemingly stuffed in every nook and cranny in my sewing rooms/mud room. I spied the fabric I bought last year to make a quilt for Hythe and decided to get to it. Last winter I decided to try to make quilts for the children. I made two very small knotted ones for Anne and Evva and thought I might try a real quilted quilt in a real bed-size for Hythe. Hythe sat with me last winter as I browsed fabric collections and helped pick out this one of blues and whites with little accents of red and orange. I ordered the fabric, washed and ironed it, but then set it aside to work on other projects.
So, it felt great to get it out, and I had an idea for a simple quilt of panels of these fabrics. I cut them into strips and cut them again, somewhat haphazardly, into rectangles. Then, I sewed them back into strips and sewed the strips together. And, instead of sewing I used my serger (new from just before Christmas). It was surprisingly quick and easy. I also used an old toddler demin shirt that had some Latin embroidery on it. I loved the embroidery and it worked well with the quilt. On one corner of the quilt, there is the front pocket from the shirt. I love working old clothes into quilts, and I especially love working little pockets in. It seems like a little secret.
I decided to back the quilt with a simple gray fabric and edge it with some brighter color. The orange of the binding coordinated and brought out the bits of orange in the quilted fabrics. This is the first quilt I have really quilted, and I was very happy with how it turned out. Hythe was too.
I finished hand sewing the binding down one night after the children had gone to bed, so I slipped the quilt over Hythe in his sleep. He woke up under it, was delighted, and has not let any other blankets on his bed since. I can tell he feels love through that quilt, and that is special. I overestimated the time and precision needed for quilting (at least for this type of quilt), and I really enjoyed making it. And, I really loved how wonderful it made Hythe feel to have this made for him.