Friday, July 20, 2012

A Memorable Summer

Another memory is made!  This truly has been the summer of memory quilts which includes t-shirt quilts and (formerly) bedding quilts.  I really like this idea.  My client used some very pretty bedding from Pottery Barn Kids when her kiddo was born.  Now that she's all grown up, she sent me the bumpers, crib skirt, and matching sheet to make into a quilt. 

I like incorporating little details like the piping and bows from the bumper.

It's soft and sweet and will be headed out to the big girl very soon!

This memory quilt I showed you a peek of last time.  It contains the large bear claw patch that I disassembled and tried to include without hurting the hand stitching.  A couple of Sunbonnet Sues, great-grandpa's baby clothes, and various items from both sides of baby's family make one awesome memory. 

I used high loft batting to make it extra "heirloomy" and soft after quilting 1/2' on each side of every seam.

A hand-embroidered label with a great Bible verse really touched me.

What an honor to be a part of family heirlooms!  I am so incredibly thankful for the opportunity to meet so many nice people and hear their stories.  God has brought so many new friends into my life and it's fascinating to watch Him show up in the most unusual places. 

Make some memories of your own this summer!  The little things are so important.

Monday, July 2, 2012


Wowee it's hot in here!  I love it, though.  I am a huge fan of all four God-given seasons in this part of the world.  I really do enjoy each and every day, no matter the weather here. 

This is the first year I've planted seeds in the garden.  We usually just put my FIL's leftover tomatoes and peppers in the ground.  But this year I'm very motivated for some reason...

It's been a few weeks now and I'm happy (and surprised!) that some seeds have actually sprouted and are really and truly growing! 

These hands have also been busy in the sewing room too.  My very creative client envisioned these eclectic colors and fabrics together.  It's so super amazing to me.  Orange, fuschia, aqua... so unique and so modern.

Because I'm expecting less than 10% of my seeds to grow into food this summer (I've learned low expectations are good), we've been hitting the pick-your-own farms like crazy.  We always love those activities anyway, but this year I've ventured into the canning and preserving world.

 Strawberry jam!  Yes, it's "only" freezer jam but dagummit I made it and stacked those lovely little jars in my freezer in less than an hour.  All during baby's morning nap.   Baby steps for me.  I've never really canned before, so this was a realistic first step.  Next year I'm jumping in completely.  Probably.

My goal this year was to get outside as much as possible.  Like all the time.  We live within walking distance to a Starbucks which has been a great motivater for the girls to learn about money.  The values of each coin, paper, and when it's gone... it's gone.  My oldest got about $8 from her Easter egg hunt and has been saving it all spring.  We taught her to tithe, save, and spend. 

Her younger sister, however, has decided her currency would be a little easier to accumulate.  PomPoms seem a lot easier to come by than shiny coins, so she tries to pay for her Starbucks cake pops with fluffy round balls.  It's great.  Anyway, she asked for a change purse and I happily obliged. 

I bought the purse frame at JoAnn for about $2.  The rest of the fabric and interfacing I had on hand (scraps).  I followed a tutorial (can't remember which one now) and had it done in a couple of hours.  

It's been a few weeks and she still hasn't lost it!  It's been filled with locust skin, acorns, pebbles, and some feathers, so I take that as a good sign she likes it.

Spring and Summer mean graduation which is good for tshirt quilts!  This one was so fun to make.  I love the colors and pattern.  It was such a unique creation and made for one of the nicest girls out there.  I used a high loft batting for the first time and was amazed at the super softness of the finished quilt.  It was hard to stop touching it.  I really loved the outcome. 

Tshirt quilt #2... another twin size quilt.  My friend here had a million gajillion shirts.  So many, infact, that I had to put some on the back.  It made for a very difficult FMQing but I was able to maneuver it and coax it into submission.  I used a gray Flea Market Fancy for the back, one of my all-time favorite prints.  I think it tied in the school colors well and added a little "girliness" to all the sporty shirts.

Currently I'm working in a wonderful memory quilt for an extraordinary client.  She's more like a dear friend that I've never met in person, but just one of those that I really connect with.  Five generations of garments are going to be included.  The quilt top is done and I'm so very excited to see it come together.

The patchwork squares are 5" each.  Then I came across this 8" old patchwork square in her stack.  Hmmm... I could not take the thought of hacking into this beautifully hand-sewn treasure from the baby's great-grandmother.   So I gently unpicked the stitches and made it into 4 mini blocks with some ivory sashing to bring it to 5".  Perfect.

More on this quilt as it comes together.  I'm so pleased with the progress and know that it will be well-loved by many people.  It is such an honor to make these special heirloom quilts.  Meeting people from all over the world and getting to know their stories is always such a blessing to me. 

From college graduates to new babies and expectant mothers (and grandmothers!), it is always a joy to connect with someone who loves quilts as much as I do and feels their power to link the past to the future. 

Enjoy these summer days.  My love and I have had some great times with the kiddies and especially alone with a little wine.  We could use a little rain but we sure do enjoy the sun.

Stay cool, my friends.