Sun 11 Oct 2009
I started learning to sew partly to make clothes for myself and partly because I loved the idea of making patchwork quilts. For some reason, that has never been clear in my muddled head, I always feared that quilt making was harder than dress making. So even though I have been to the Festival of Quilts three years running, making a quilt has been something that I have been building up to slowly.
Over a year ago, whilst my sister was still pregnant, I offered to make the baby a quilt for his first birthday. Almost exactly a year ago, after much fretting, I took the bull by the horns and bought a kit for a very cute robot quilt by the Eternal Maker. Then over the last year I have gathered momentum (and skills) towards making the quilt. In the meantime however I couldn’t help buying cute robot and space fabrics that I stumbled upon.
I have now realised that it is my love of fabrics that dictates what I sew and not that my sewing projects lead me to buy fabrics. My ever increasing fabric stash should have given me a hint about this, but ho-hum, never mind. As the date of my nephew’s birthday got closer I took out the quilt kit and the fabrics that I had added to it and realised that the original design couldn’t cope with my additions.
Happily my projects over the last year have increased my confidence about design and use of colour combinations, and the quilt kit gave me a great springboard. It took me a couple of evenings to work through the maths of the design, scribbling my plans in coloured pencils. Once the blocks were finished it took another few evenings rearranging the blocks on the living room floor (thank goodness I didn’t attempt his in my old, tiny flat). At first I worried that the green and the red in the blocks clashed too much with the blues. But I decided that as the red and green were echoed in the central squares of the blocks, the clashes made the quilt more interesting.
I used a 100% bamboo wadding (which shed something awful and so was a bit of a pain to work with) and I used star shapes to quilt. I worry that I didn’t quilt it enough but only time will tell. Unfortunately I don’t have a good picture showing the whole quilt but this will have to do for now.
To sign the quilt I decided to play with waste canvas and cross-stitch (which was fun but did send me a little cross-eyed for an evening or two).
And for the signature I wrote
Can’t get much more special than that I think. Before I’d added my nephew’s name I think R thought he had a chance in persuading me to let him keep the quilt. He is now, therefore, pestering me to make a quilt for our sofa.
All in all this quilt was a joy to make and I have a least two more designs bubbling away in my head.