From back: my uncle, great-great-grandmother sandwich between two distant cousins, my great-great-grandfather, my grandmother, and my great-grandmother.
I remember when I was younger, my mother had three or four elaborate (and deteriorating) quilts that were sewn together by her great grandmother. My great-great grandmother, Katie Reynolds, was of Indian heritage. I am unsure of which tribe because tracing my family’s history is, let’s just say, difficult. Many of my family members have never considered themselves the “faithful” type and with all the known (and unknown) aunts, uncles, mothers, brothers, fathers it is a little hard to trace ancestry.Back to the point, I remember these quilts as if I owned them myself. Each block was of a different fabric and motif. Some had cotton with brilliant reds, greens, and blues while others had a lesser quality fabric with gold and silver threading that caught in the sunlight. Each large enough to wrap yourself in twice and, occasionally when your feet got warm enough, each with holes big enough around the edges to stick your toes through. My grandma tells me that she made these quilts for each birth in the family i.e. my grandma got two for her two daughters and my mom got three for each of us. Sadly, these quilts deteriorated or got lost before I was old enough to patch them.
So in the spirit of my great-great grandmother, and with a little coaxing from post-holiday sales, I have decided to start on a quilt of my own. It took me a couple of days to draw up the design that I wanted, since I picked out the fabric before I created my design. I did some researching and decided that I should have a main patterned fabric, complimented with some other lesser patterned solid fabrics. I also bought a Jelly Roll of some solid colors just to add more variety and burst of color.
Then it took me another few days to find a graphing notebook and finding something simple enough that I thought I could attain. I figured keep the blocks a basic 10”x10”, then the rest of my measurements would be even and easy to keep in proportion. Also, I drew up a simple striped pattern to keep cutting, ironing, and sewing screw-ups to a minimum.Next, it was time to fill in my pattern with some color! This was probably the hardest part I have encountered so far and I have not even starting sewing yet. Who would have thought that the creative part of the process would be the part to trip me up. It sort of branches out into an array of crazy mirror image patterns>
After that, since my jelly roll strips were pre-cut, I had to figure out how much of each fabric I needed. I have only just begun to cut the black and purple, as you can see. I am taking my time with this project though, working only on weekends to keep from burning myself out too soon. All too often I tackle craft projects with the mindset I will have it completed in a night.
My dog and my source of income. The kid, not the quilt. I am a nanny. 🙂
As you have probably already guessed, this quilt did not get finished in a night,nor in a year even! I cut the fabric and set it aside fro a while, only to pick it back up right before I got married last year. I wanted to finish the quilt as a wedding gift for my beloved, and finish it I did! It looked something like I had imagined, but it is way more practical than I would’ve imagined. Since I finished this quilts during the winter months, I bought grey cotton flannel for the back, and the border is black flannel. I also doubled up the batting so this quilt is a lean, mean, warmth holding machine! And my husband loves it. My next quilt though, will NOT be on queen sized that’s for sure. Lesson learned. ❤