Monday, March 2, 2015

T-shirt Memory Quilt HJ

*long post
I was asked by a friend to make a quilt out the t-shirts, jerseys, sweatshirt, and bandana that were her sons. She lost her son several years ago and had saved these shirts hoping to have them turned into a quilt one day. 
I, of course, was more than happy to make the quilt for her.
Like most t-shirt quilt there were a few challenges. She told me what she wanted from the shirts and I tried to make as much of that happen as I could. I thought I might share some of the challenges I worked through in this quilt so that it might help some of you.
This shirt was a little baseball shirt from when he was a child. It had his number on the shoulder and she asked to preserve the number and to use the shirt front.
Normally when I work on a t-shirt quilt I cut off the neckline. This time with the number being so close to the neckline, shoulder, and sleeve I did not think I would have enough seam allowance if I cut around it.
What I decided to do was cut the shoulder seams off straight, cut the bottom of the shirt off, and glue the shoulders and neckline to the bottom of the shirt. 

Another challenge was using net jersey. I had never used a net jersey before. I did not want to directly put fusible interfacing on the jersey because it would fuse to the ironing board and might breakdown eventually and the batting come through.
I searched for answers on how to use this and found nothing! Wow!
I decided to glue the jersey around the edges, where it would probably be cut off, to a piece of plain fabric that matched in color. Then I ironed on the fusible to the plain fabric and put in some basting stiches. It worked great! The only thing I would have done differently is to put in more basting stiches. Net jerseys are very slippery and with the basting it made it easier to quilt.

There was this sweatshirt which had a front pocket. I thought it would be nice to save this pocket so that she could also put her hands in the pocket. On the bottom, the pocket was sewn into the waistband. I simply cut this off and left it alone on the bottom until it was sewed into the quilt which closed the bottom.

My favorite part is the little shirt he wore as a small child. She asked me to put this shirt in and I am sure that she did not think that I would put the entire shirt on the top uncut, but I thought it best to have this little shirt to show how little he was.
I talked with a friend who did something similar with her daughter's shirt about how she put the shirt on her quilt. She said that she cut the back off, glued it to another piece of fabric, and put a finish on the edge of the cut shirt.
I did something similar. I did not want to cut the back off, because I wanted to save the tag, and I did not want to somehow finish the raw edge where I hat cut the back off. Instead, I glued the back to a plain back of a different shirt and baste stitched it down. When I quilt this block, I quilted through all of the layers and broke a couple of needles. Perhaps if I do this again I will opt to cut the back off, but it worked very well this way.

The bandana was very easy. I treated it like a t-shirt and it worked great. It got an extra amount of quilting, which I loved.
Also, in the baseball jersey (in the bottom corner), I glued  a sleeve from a different shirt in the v neckline to keep the buttons, and to avoid sewing a bulky seam.  I quilted his initials there in the neck.
When I gave this quilt to my friend, she was overjoyed to have it. I was overjoyed that it brought her so much happiness.
We has fun trying to take pictures of this awesome quilt in the snow and wind. It did not work all that well, but we had fun.

Once again I used this black and white circle print fabric for the backing and binding. It is perfect for a quilt that is multicolored like a t-shirt quilt!
I enjoyed making this quilt for my friend and I know that she is greatly enjoying it.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

2015 quilty goals: February update

February has been a great month. As of the time of posting this, I have finished two quilts in the month of February. Yes, one just needed a binding, and it was not listed in the goals; however, I finished it! I finished a t-shirt quilt which I will post on Monday, I finished the batik on point quilt top ahead of schedule, and quilted one of my friend's tops which is now waiting on a facing.

Yes, I am still way busy, but when it snows or there is an ice storm in Alabama we sort of close everything down. So, I have been home several days and my busy schedule has been placed on hold. What is a quilter behind on her quilting goals to do when snowed in? You guessed it: quilt!

Saturday, February 21, 2015

First Finish of 2015: Star Wars Z

First finish of 2015! Although I really think it should be the last of 2014. If I had everything except the binding on it before 2015 arrived should I say it made in 2014 or 2015? I guess it doesn't matter because it is finished and I am just now talking about it.

Remember when I made that 2 and it looked more like a Z?

Well, I have a nephew with a Z name who LOVES Star Wars.
So, I used the Z in a Star Wars themed quilt that I made for him. Although at first I was going to make a huge pillow for him, his mom suggested I make a quilt instead.
I was making this for him for Christmas. We were going to celebrate the Saturday after Christmas this year, and I had everything but the binding on it when we I found that this part of my family had to go out of state directly after Christmas; the day before we were going to celebrate. It was kind of sudden...

They said that they would not be able to be back until around May, so I just did not finish it.
However, since I am putting the binding on the T-shirt Quilt that I am finishing, I thought I would put the already made binding on this one also.

It is one of my favorite quick quilts: a strip quilt, and it is quilted with my favorite wavy quilting.
It is the perfect kind of Star Wars overload and is just great. I know that he is going to love this!
This is a lap quilt which is the best size for a child and easy to take on the go.
Measurements: 40.5"x 50"

Saturday, January 31, 2015

2015 quilty goals: January update

2015 quilty goals

I really plan to get these quilty goals completed this year! Today is the last day of January, and how have I done so far in getting any of these goals finished?

Well, I am close to having the t-shirt quilt finished and I have started on the batik square on-point.

I feel like I am looking good especially since starting the week of the 12th and lasting through mid April I am and will be home at least ten hours less a week.

Soon I will have some quilt completions to show. 2015 is looking GOOD!

Friday, January 16, 2015

High School T-shirt Quilt

I have been working quietly on a huge t-shirt quilt.

It is the biggest quilt that I have ever made (93"x96"). There were times when I wondered what was wrong with me; why was I making such a big quilt?

In the end, as always, there is a love for making things and the thanks and love from the recipient.

As I quilted this quilt I thought of the person that would get this quilt and all of the memories that she held in these t-shirts. I hoped for the best future for her as I worked on her pleasant past. As I thought of these things, the size was not a problem and the quilt was finished quickly. It also helped that I made a decision to quilt four blocks a day until all 49 of them where finished.

First, I quilted a straight line from top to bottom on the piecing line, then I quilted each quilt block with free-motion quilting.

These are just a few:


I wanted to have a different quilting pattern for each quilt block, but it was getting difficult. Instead I used many similar patterns but tried to make them a little different in each one.

I was able to finish this quilt just in time for Christmas. It felt really good to make a decision, set a deadline, and make it happen. It feels even better to give a gift that is loved so much.

So, here is a full view of the quilt top before quilting:
Forgive the office supplies in the corner. Just keeping it real.

Monday, January 12, 2015


This will not be the first quilt of 2015, nor will it be the last for 2014.
I got a good bit behind blogging my quilts in 2014 and plan to catch up this month.

Also, I thought that I had already revealed this quilt, but I guess I just missed it.

Here is the gorgeous Serenity:
The back is a beautiful castle fabric that has what can only be thought of as princesses and a few frogs. I is the perfect fabric for this quilt in colors and for the fact that this little girl is called their little princess. I gave my friend a choice of fabrics and this is the one that we both chose.
Perfect? I think so.

The binding was a pink fabric that I had on hand. It just looked absolutely perfect with this quilt!

One last picture to show off the quilting. I think that the quilting shines on this quilt and really adds to the appeal of this quilt. It helps to liven the patchwork up a little. I think all in all this is a perfectly sweet little girl's quilt.
Maybe I should rename it Perfect Serenity. It would be a perfect name, right?

And we have a perfect-sweet little princess quilt and the only fabric bought was for the backing.
Love it!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2015 Challenges/ Resolutions

This past year I made a few quilty challenges/ resolutions:

2014 Challenges/ Resolutions

This is new for me and maybe a little late in the month to post. I do not make New Year's challenges or resolutions, although I usually have a few plans. This year I have plans, but I want to put them here so that I will feel more of a push to complete them.

So, plans/ challenges/ resolutions for 2014:

Crown Royal quilt-I have been promising a quilt for my husband made out of the bags that he has saved over more than a decade. I have been gathering inspiration on
Pinterest. So many possibilities and possibly more than one quilt with what I have. I hope to have it finished by December. That should be plenty of time.

Three "Finishing the Unfinished" quilt tops-as I have stated, I have three more quilt tops to finish for my friend. I plan to have these finished before mid May.
Also, I hope to make a series on my blog using this title. I have in the past finished quilt tops that others have made. I feel that there are many quilt tops that should be finished, and I plan to continue this.

I also currently have two baby quilts to make with varying completion dates.

That is really all the quilty goals I have planned this year. I am sure there will be a lot more quilt than these six, but this is a good start, right?

I have a really big non-quilt goal/plan for this summer-fall. Let's just hope it works out.
As I am sure you have noticed, I did not complete most of this. That is not to say that I haven't worked on any of it or even thought about it.
I worked on the Crown Royal quilt several times, but never got things rolling.
I finished one of the quilt tops for my friend and will get on that for the other two. I have backing fabric already; I just never worked any further on the other two. They are next on my list after I finish a t-shirt quilt that needs to be finished asap.
I did finish the two baby quilts and several more, as expected.
Most of all I wanted to complete the  last goal. I concentrated on it more that any thing, and it really took a lot of my time. It in many ways drained me. It is a BIG life goal that will continue to draw much of my attention.
So, what about challenges/ resolutions for 2015?
*t-shirt quilt (Check: Feb)
*finish friend's quilt tops (one quilted waiting on facing: Feb)
*Auburn Strip quilt
*Jewel Tone quilt
*Crown Royal quilt
*hound's-tooth quilt
*batik square on-point (top finished: Feb)
*BIG life goal

I have put these on my white board at home with dates. I plan to get most of these quilts finished before June and the Crown Royal quilt before August. With these written where I can see them, I am sure I will have  better success rate in 2015.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

2016 Finished

 I am in LOVE with this quilt. Be prepared for photo overload.
Go Tigers!
Look at the date quilted in the back! It looks so good! Also, this is black with white dot fabric. I am not sure why it looks grey, but I just had to show this picture.

I looked and looked for a fabric that I liked for the backing but could not find what I imagined. So, I looked in my stash for something else that would work. I found this black fabric with white dots and then added the white fabric and the white with black crisscross lines. It is not what I envisioned, but it is better.

I had planned to use the black fabric for the binding, but I used more than I thought I would in the quilt and did not have enough left for the binding. So, I used some of the other fabric that I had left over and I think that looks really wonderful also.
It was well received and treasured. Although this was made for a momma, she plans to use this for all sorts of graduation stuff next year. I am ecstatic that could make this happen for her. It seems that I am most excited that she plans to use this to keep warm at games.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Serenity Quilting

I really felt this quilt needed some extra quilting to give it some dimension.
So, I divided each block into four...

...then I got out my headphones and a cup to draw petals.

 Then I went to town sewing petals. This is about the best way for me to make these look good. I have to draw a sewing guide line.
All finished.
I really like how the quilting turned out. It really adds to the quilt.
Now to bind it.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Serenity's Quilt

I have a friend who has had six children. Although they were not trying for a girl, her first five children were all boys. They had decided after their fourth child that he would be their last. Then they had two more surprises and the last was their girl.

She is the first granddaughter for this family and everyone is excited. Of course since I have made baby quilts for all of her brother, I just had to make one for her.

Colors requested were: pink and purple. So, I pulled  pink and purple scraps and trimmed and squared them up. Do you not just love a little pile of trimmings?

After all of the trimming, squaring, and rearranging, I wound up with this.
I think it is kind of cute even though I think it is slightly boring, but I think I can pep it up with some awesome quilting and a super princess backing fabric.