I've been sewing since 1966 and quilting since 1983. Yep, I am that darn old! My entire sewing and quilting body of work is like a quilt - there are creations that really didn't work out that well, others that were okay and some that I simply adored but overall they make a nice whole with which I am very happy. Some quilts, however, really stand out. I know, I am not being modest here but every once in a while I make something that I don't find fault with, I don't see the mistake every time I look at it, I just revel in it and enjoy it. I am actually working on having that kind of pleasure from everything I sew but it's a process. I was recently reminded of one of my very favorite quilts when I was going through books.
In my new role as Grandma, I want to be prepared to read quilt books, you never know when suddenly one will need to be read. I am not a rat pack but luckily I did keep most of the Children's quilt books I bought my own girls and have been purchasing the ones I foolishly got rid of. (Note to self: never get rid of any quilt related items ever again, continue to hoard.) I found that I had TWO copies of the Quiltmaker's Gift, yippee! I put one in my "read to Zara" pile and kept the other one with my quilting books. Of course I leafed thought it, it is such a delightful story but not one I will read to her soon. This led to my looking at the book which shows how to make quilts from the book.
I had plans on making the whole book, well, at least 2 or 3 but I actually only made one. My oldest daughter, Emily, spied the patter book when she was a sophomore in college and announced that she had found her college graduation quilt. I started it that year, first collecting fabrics and then piecing by machine. I made it extra big because I wanted it to be big enough to completely cover a twin or double bed or be used on a Queen sized bed with a dust ruffle. I finished the piecing by her Junior year. At that point I was hand quilting everything or getting them machine quilted up at Top Shelf Quilts, my beloved local quilt store. She graduated the following year in May and well, the quilt was not done. I was maybe a bit defensive, hey, you are still living here, it doesn't need to be quilted. But I tried to speed up, deciding that I would finish it by Christmas. Or not. She made plans to move into an apartment in February and I began to quilt like a crazy maniac and phew, I made it! I was so excited that we even got her a double bed to put it on. Here is the finished quilt and I absolutely love it. If I made any mistakes, I don't see them. I just see the happiness of her graduating from college and me finishing this quilt. ( FYI -The pattern is robbing Peter to Pay Paul, page 112 of the book. I changed the border blocks.)
The picture, by the way, was taken yesterday, almost ten years after I finished the quilt. The ironic thing is that while I planned for its use on a twin, double or queen sized bed, Emily bought...wait for it...a king sized bed about 18 months after I finished it so the quilt is in really good shape. The quilt was safely stored here for quite a while. Finally, it got a place! It was on the twin sized bed in their guest room once she and her husband moved into a house but that room is now Zara's room. I didn't like the picture I had originally taken of the quilt so I borrowed it and had my husband hold it up for a new one. He said, wow, this is a really nice quilt. Who is it for? It took all my self control to say "Emily" and return it to her. I have quilt envy of her quilt and I made it! This is how I will NEVER run out of projects to make.