Quilts for Sale

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Itching to Stitch

Matthew's college quilt - 1999
Here it is draped over my new cutting table.

The replaced triangle is marked with a pin.

The aqua fabric next to the red pin came from a shirt Matthew wore in third grade. It has appeared in several quilts.

I've been itching to stitch and find I become anxious and unsettled without a project. Since completing two full-size quilts this year I've been in limbo. Having spent such long periods working on them, I haven't really thought about "what's next?" Just in the knick of time, the kids came to my rescue! Two quilts I'd stitched for our son Matthew were in need of repair.

His going away to college quilt, a twin-sized hidden stars design, had somehow lost a piece of fabric. That was a fun and easy fix. After taking out a bit of the machine quilting to give easier access to the seam allowances, I replaced some of the batting and stitched a replacement fabric using a reverse applique' technique. All that remains is to fill in the machine quilting and do minor repair on the binding. It felt good to sit and sew for just a few minutes.

I really enjoyed looking at all the fabrics used too. It is not quite a charm quilt (where no fabric is used more than once) but I tried my best. At one point I resorted to cutting up the ironing. Used in the piece were vintage and Japanese fabrics, repurposed shirts, aprons and linens, bark cloth, hand-dyes as well as quilting cottons.

The second quilt will be a bit more complicated. The shoo-fly design is the second quilt I ever made and was created when Matthew was three.

I stitched the date - 1982 - in the border.

Being a 'newbie' quilter, I merely brought the backing fabric to the front and stitched it down. This fraying shows why a double binding is so important in extending the life of a quilt.

The second problem is a hole which goes all the way through to the back. It looks as if the quilt caught on something.

A good sized piece of the original calico was pulled from the 'donate' box at the last minute this summer. I remember thinking, "You may need that one day." Who knew?

Although this quilt was never exhibited, it did have a hanging sleeve. Removed, it provided enough of the original muslin for the repair. I've been thinking about the best restoration method and will remove and replace one triangle and a section of sashing. I'll also add a new binding - properly done this time!

Note: I was amazed at how little fading there has been on this quilt despite several washings and repeated use. The dyes in textiles made in North Carolina nearly 30 years ago were far superior to those used overseas today, IMHO.


Kay Koeper Sorensen said...

I like your new header photo.
A perfect way to start a new year.

I too have my son's college quilts upstairs and it needs a new backing. I've beeen procrastinating about it for 3 or 4 years now!

Patty Cramer said...

Hey Dear Sister,

I just LOVE the new header and I see my sweet friend Kay from Wisconsin and Florida has beat me to the punch!!

Happy New Year World!!

I love you!!!!

Ellen Guerrant said...

Hi Kay and Patty - I love it when people leave comments on my blog. You two are the best at it. Thanks for your encouraging words.
Happy New Year!

Love you, pattycakes. Ellen.