Thursday, July 13, 2017

sixteen | a quilt for Hanah

Almost a year ago a friend from church, Kim, asked me if I would be willing to make a quilt for her daughter's sixteenth birthday. She had purchased an Amish quilt before her daughter was even born, but her daughter loved the quilt and it had grown worn and threadbare. Kim had the idea of giving Hanah a new quilt made with sixteen blocks to represent each of her sixteen years and also her sixteen closest family members. It would be queen size and completely custom so I was a little hesitant at first because of the size and scope of the project, but ultimately I decided I was up to the challenge. First I visited their home so I could see Hanah's original quilt, and I took photos as a reference for style and color because Kim wanted the feel of the new quilt to be similar to that of the old one. Then Kim provided me with ideas and inspiration for family member, leaving it to me to interpret them into quilt blocks. I began by choosing a rough color palette, leaning heavily on Carolyn Friedlander and Cotton + Steel (mostly basics and gingham) fabrics for their wide range of colors. Then I sketched the dimensions of the quilt, deciding on a traditional layout with sashing, cornerstones, and very wide borders, thus keeping the sixteen blocks on top of the bed so all would be visible rather than draped over the sides. Some blocks were easy to make - the inspiration was straightforward and I knew right away how I wanted to translate the concept into a quilt block. Others were more difficult and I struggled with the best way to convey the idea, but I spent lots of time thinking and eventually came up with blocks for everyone. I'm very happy with the quilt and I'm proud (and relieved!) to say that Kim, Hanah, and family are too.   
[I've included a few links at the bottom to credit my sources for a few of the blocks.] 









Navy Seal machine embroidery

funky candy fabric & treasure jars pattern (note: I enlarged the block size)

heart quilt block

Amelia block (the airplane) from the book Dear Quilty by Mary Fons & softball fabric

awesome banana fabric

police car block (pillow size) from Busy City by Shea Henderson

I can't forget the back! Kim requested that the back have a paw print to represent their dog Shaggy and I embroidered the reference for Hanah's life verse, Jeremiah 29:11.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

sister love | a quilt for Mykenzie

I've wanted to make this quilt for ages but didn't have the perfect recipient in mind... until my friend Jaclyn told me she was pregnant. Then I knew I had to make this for Big Sister. Mykenzie has been praying for a baby for a long time and I know she's going to love this baby with a big love. Her favorite color is fuschia and I knew Jaclyn loved the Rifle Paper Co. floral print so that with the Cotton + Steel fruit dots gold stripe made the perfect pair. The back is a fun Suzy Ultman print that I bought on #thegreatfabricdestash a while ago. I quilted simple straight lines, not too many because I wanted to keep it soft, and bound it in the fuschia. Finn volunteered to help me take pictures again, and he requested that his hand be in one of the close ups :D Also please excuse the laundry basket, Ninja Turtle puzzle pieces, and everything else in my living room! 

golden girl | a quilt for Baby Correia

A friend of mine is expecting her second baby girl and of course I wanted to make her a quilt. Her family has a golden retriever named Simba and they LOVE him so I looked around for some cute doggo fabric and found the perfect one on spoonflower by petfriendly. I highly recommend checking them out if you need any cute dog fabric! They have lots of different breeds and colors. In hindsight I wish I had ordered the goldens in something other than pink but I didn't realize it was available in other colors. The pink is pretty, but I would have preferred something a little less busy. Anyway, I ordered a yard on Kona cotton and after debating a few different quilt patterns I decided to go the whole cloth route so I wouldn't chop up the pups. My boys love their minky quilts the best (they're the snuggliest) so I backed this one in minky dot, quilted it with free motion hearts, and bound it in a vintage looking floral. It was a quick project but I think it's perfect! Meredith teared up when I gave it to her so I'd say it's a success :) Finn likes to help me take quilt pictures lately, so here he is, plus a few detail shots...

Monday, May 29, 2017

pretty patchwork | a quilt for Nola

Sometimes it's difficult for me to articulate why I feel compelled to make quilts for certain people. Recently I posted Rory's birth story on my blog and linked to it on instagram and on facebook. My friend's sister (who I've never met) commented, thanking me for sharing my story. It was similar in some ways to the birth of her daughter, her first child, who's only a month or so older than Rory. I had left her a voicemail in the days leading up to her due date at my friend's request because she was scheduled to be induced and looking for encouragement. She's still accepting her birth experience, working through it and processing the details. So I did what any quilter does when someone needs a bit of comfort - I started making this quilt for her daughter on Sunday night and I mailed it to them today. We'll probably never meet (they live in PA and I'm in RI), but I wanted to do something for her. Growing and birthing a baby and being born as a mother yourself can be challenging, and I guess this quilt is my way of saying I understand and it matters and I'm here. I hope Sara, Frank, and little Nola accept it in the spirit in which it is given. 

P.S. Rounded corners are so sweet (and easy!), I don't know why I don't do them more often.

cloudy skies | a quilt for Luke

One of my friends from high school recently gave birth to her second baby and my friend Ari and I made a quilt for him. We knew his nursery was gray, white, and yellow and there was a vague cloud theme going on, and we knew we wanted to keep it classic and simple. Ari had the idea to make a herringbone quilt so we got to work making half square triangles, and I found the perfect teal cloud fabric for the back. I quilted it with simple straight lines and bound it in a mustardy yellow. I was about to say simple quilts are always the best, but then I realized crazy quilts are sometimes the best. Either way, I love the simplicity of this one and most of all I loved working on it with Ari. We hope Luke loves it too!
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