Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Five Weeks and Counting

Dear readers, as I write this, I am a whirlwind of quilt-making activity. My boys have five more (short! precious!) weeks of school before summer vacation starts, and I am doing everything I can to be productive before we slip into our summer schedule. I have three finishes to share with you in the next week or two, and then I’ll be starting something new. : )

My first finish is this, a throw-size quilt for my mother for her (belated) birthday/Mother’s Day. It might also cover last Christmas—I can’t remember. When it takes 20 to 40 hours to make a present for someone, I think it should count for multiple gift-giving holidays!


This quilt was a long time in the making. It wasn’t complicated—actually, the block design, by Patch the Giraffe, is straight-forward. What was difficult to work with was the fabric. I used a jelly roll of the Lady Mary collection from Andover’s Downton Abbey line. The fabrics themselves are lovely, but they don’t work well together as a collection. There is no clear focal fabric, no design to anchor the group. And although armed with a few dozen 2½-inch strips of these fabrics, I didn’t have enough variety to make an interesting quilt. My solution was to buy more fabric, almost exclusively from other Downton collections, to try to make it work.

I started working with the burgundy, dark blues, and tan from the original jelly roll.


I omitted a few fabrics with cream backgrounds because they didn’t create enough contrast with the Kona Snow I used. The cream background below is the exception. In addition to burgundy and dark blue dots, it contains some purple ones, which helped me expand my palette and add some different fabrics to the mix.


These traditional dots, surrounded by purple, are not from the Downton Abbey line. They’re sweet, though, and worked well with the other designs ...


The top needed a little something else, so I added a swath of pink in the border and bound the project in the purple dot.


The result may not be a “Michelle quilt,” but I think it’s a good stab at “a Mom quilt made by Michelle.”

The funny thing is, my mom is a quilter. I’ve made a handful of quilts for other quilters (like this one and this one). After all, who could appreciate the time and effort I put into a project more than another quilter?

What’s your take on making quilts for quilters? Have you given one of your creations to someone who could have made it for him- or herself?

Linking up to Let’s Bee Social, Needle and Thread Thursday, and Finish It Up Friday ...

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12 comments:

  1. I agree...only a quilter can truly understand the work that goes into a quilt. Your Mom will love her quilt and the fact that you took the time to make it for her. :) I have a DA jelly roll and charm packs that have been in my stash for a long time now. I look at them then put them back. Now I'm thinking maybe there's a reason I haven't used them. Thanks for sharing your experience with those prints, and Congrats on a finish!

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  2. My mom is also a quilter, as you recall, and it took me until last summer to make and gift a quilt to her! I bet your mom will appreciate the love and effort that went into this. :)

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  3. My take on making quilts for quilters is that THEY WILL LOVE IT! No matter what! I haven't been quilting that long and so far, I haven't had a spare minute to make one for myself. Every single quilt I've made and even the next four on the list are for someone else. I got so desperate to have one that I bought I quilt top from a friend intending to at least quilt it myself, but that never happened either and I am going to have to pay someone else to quilt it. I need something to snuggle under!!! Anyway, just speaking for myself, I would be absolutely thrilled to no end to have a quilt made by someone else even though I could make it myself.

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  4. A lovely quilt! I haven't looked closely at that particular range, thanks for sharing your findings. Oh and you did make it more interesting with that pink border!

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  5. you know I have not ever made a quilt for another quilter - I wish I would have made a quilt for my aunt who started to quilt after I did but she wouldn't enjoy it now as her memory is failing - she is 90 now and her Alzheimer's is getting pretty bad.

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  6. I made my mom a quilt before she started quilting. I actually quilted before she did, so that worked out for us! Not sure I would attempt it now, but I do make her small projects that I know she wouldn't make herself and I know she appreciates it. The quilt is great, your mom will think of you and know the love you put into it!

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  7. Yes, and received them, too. The thing is, we COULD make a quilt for ourselves, but how often DO we? That turned out lovely, in spite of fabric woes, and your mother is no doubt very pleased.

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  8. Oh, I know she will love and appreciate it!

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  9. I really like the quilt and I am sure your mother will love it. My kids only have 2 weeks left of school and my brain has not yet come to grips with that :)

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  10. My mom was a quilter but I gave her and daddy one for their 50th anniversary. I didn't know how much they enjoyed it until after they both passed away. They kept in their favorite place--their camper.
    There is no doubt in my mind that your mom will love this one. It's beautiful, plus she knows how much love went into it. Fabulous choice of fabrics. (It probably means even more knowing that you chose fabrics that she likes.)

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  11. Thanks for the quiltly love in this post. Back on Blogger! This past weekend has recharged my sewing battery :)

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