Cheryll's Writing Journal

Musings, rants and ravings, plus gems of insight nobody wants to hear now that I've finally got them. Also neat stuff I found on the 'Net when I should have been updating this blog....

Monday, October 19, 2009

Three Quilts Complete...One to go...

Was clearing out my sewing stash and found a hand pieced quilt top that my mother had made from scraps of cotton left over from our toddler play clothes.

The rabbit feed used to come in cotton print sacking, about 1 yard/50 pound bag. She used the cloth to make shirts for my Dad and cute little outfits for my brother and I.

What better project than to divide it four ways and make heirloom quilted snuggles for my grandkids! Uh-huh, hold that thought, but then do a fast reality check and discover that I no longer HAVE any toddler-sized grandkids!

I inherited that quilt top and carried it around with me for 20 some years, always intending to do something with it; it's about number one on my Bucket List.

Now I know why she didn't ever finish it. The white pieces were from old recycled sheets, and are full of tiny rust stains and other marks that she probably couldn't see while she was piecing it all together.

She made the squares while doing night duty obstetrics, sitting in a darkened room, waiting for babies to be born.

However, such blemishes aren't an issue if what we want is something the kids can use right away and not have to worry about 'saving' a priceless antique. It's been saved too long as it is. In fact, some of the fabric is pretty fragile.

So, I carefully unpicked a seam down the middle, dividing the top into 2 lengths 4x7 squares each. Since they live in California, heavy batting and backing aren't necessary. I didn't want to buy more fabric, but none of the rest of my stuff seemed to go with this colorway. Fortunately, Target was having sale on their fleece blankets ($10!) so I bought a couple of those and used that for backing.

Then I tacked it all together using button quilting. :) Since the buttons can be sewed on by machine, it really saves the old fingers. That old cotton sheeting is really tough as leather!

All is not complete, however, since I have 3 grandchildren and only 2 quilts done, so for the baby (who, I have it on reliable authority, is now big enough to ride all the rides at Disneyland!) I needed to whip up another blanket.

I had some fleece remnants that were soft and bright, so cut them into squares with pinking shears, pieced them, and floated them onto a bigger piece of fleece, folding over the extra to make edge binding:

Then I tacked it together with button quilting, too. The buttons are vintage, as well as the fabrics, being from my button box, which contains inherited items from two grandmothers, mother, sister and mother-in-laws.
[Note how the buttons cleverly conceal any misaligned corners on this stretchy fabric that might be seen, otherwise...]

So, these three little quilts finished some projects on my bucket list, were fun to do, and will be perfect for tweens, because they can wrap up for movies on the floor with them, take them on sleep overs, or sit out on the deck in the sunshine to read a book. Well, in my household, at least, they would never be allowed to use 'good' blankets for those activities, LOL.

Meanwhile, I have finished the 9-point star patches begun in the mid 1970s and pieced the quilt top together.

It just needs a backing and filler, because it is for me and I live where WINTER happens... Maybe I'll go back to Target and see if their cotton sheet blankets are still on sale. If I float the top on woven cotton, with one of my washable wool blankets sandwiched between, and tack it firmly with lots of buttons........

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