30/12/2013 § 2 Comments
A couple of months ago, I received an enquiry from a guy in London who wanted a Christmas quilt for his grandfather … “I’d like a bed quilt for my grandfather who is almost 90 years old”. What a wonderful idea for a unique present, I thought – yes, I could make a quilt for his grandfather.
I asked for some more details and gleaned a little more information about a very special farm that had once belonged to the old man’s family. I was told that …
“He reminisces with great fondness about his grandparents’ home – a farm in rural Wales, called Withy Hill. I don’t have a photo of the farm, but it’s up a rough road, surrounded by fields. His family worked hard on the land and must have lived a simple life in their stone cottage”
We had a chat and decided not to have an actual farmhouse on the quilt, the fabrics would work together to create the storytale of rural life – I had a free hand to choose. Yay! A visit to the amazing Country Threads Patchwork in Bath – we had a jaunt there for a couple of days in early December, as a bit of a pre-Christmas treat – and Jan’s fabrics, as always, held all the answers.
I chose a palette of soft russets, with some touches of olive green and blue (there was a duck pond at the farm) and my favourite white cotton for the patchwork top. Taupe fleece, sage polka dot for the border and a name label would all work together to create the quilt.
From the many quilts I have made this year, this will be one I’ll always remember. I too have descended from generations of farmers in Wales and I felt as though I was weaving some of my history into the quilt as I worked. The grandson was delighted when he received the quilt, as was his grandfather on Christmas Day …
“Thank you so much for my grandfather’s quilt. The colours are amazing, so subtle and superbly balanced. The key you provided gave me great insight into your thought processes when designing and creating this quilt. My grandfather was speechless and there was a tear in his eye when he saw the name label. This quilt means a lot to both of us.” Mr AU, London
I love making quilts, as you may have realised if you’re a regular reader! I particularly love creating special quilts, taking ideas and turning them into an heirloom patchwork.
I’m currently working on another special quilt – one for us at home this time. It’ll be the project that sees me from one year to the next. I think it’s going to be called ‘On a cold and frosty morning’ and will include my favourite Scandinavian colour palette!
24/02/2013 § 32 Comments
Traditional Scandinavian colours, and over 50 quilted hearts …
Songbird was my Valentine’s Day gift to my husband – made with love, for the one I love!
Songbird is a very special quilt. When I saw the signature fabric, I loved it straight away – flowers, pretty little birds and soft colours. I’m much into the Scandinavian influence at the moment and am quite obsessed with using pure white. When quilted, the patterns look like the purest snow! Songbird is backed with white flannelette so it’s very soft and snuggly.
The close-ups of the quilted blocks play tricks with me sometimes – do they with you? Instead of looking puffy, sometimes they look concave! They are definitely puffy! I quilted all the pure white blocks with a contour heart surrounded by free-motion quilted pebbles to remind us of our favourite holidays by the sea in Cornwall. All the white borders are the same but on the outside borders I quilted little hearts and ribbons in a band all the way around – almost 60 hearts in total!
Songbird will have to double up as all my happy:smiley post too, this week. I loved the time we spent in Cornwall, I loved walking the dogs on the beach at sunrise, I loved coming back home to a quacky welcome from Flora. I want to quilt long into the chilly nights then drift to sleep and dream of fabrics, new designs, future plans and warmth, beneath a quilt full of hearts! Long, long live love!
What have the Handmade Monday gang been up to this week? Pop over to see them at Wendy’s Handmade Monday No 105.
I’m also linking up to New to Me in 2013, as my free-motion quilted pebbles and contour hearts are both new quilting techniques.
Have a lovely week
PS just remembered that I wanted to say that I finished another, smaller Scandinavian design quilt last week. At least, it’s pieced but not quilted just yet. I was sidetracked by a cushion that I simply HAD to create. I’ll post some photos when the sun’s out and the quilting’s done!
27/01/2013 § 16 Comments
be sure to pack your Teddy Bear Blue quilt!
It’s all twinkly stars with gingham check, stripe and polka dot teddies tumbling around in every block.
I’ve used my favourite white flannelette as backing and a lightweight wadding in the middle. We want little people all snuggly, but not boiling over! The binding is a simple blue gingham which is just visible over on the left of the middle photo. I’ve just this minute finished the hand-stitching around the binding edge – phew! And all in time for the 101st Handmade Monday too.
Can’t resist one last (will we have more?) snow photo of the collies earlier in the week up at Farley Mount …
Enjoy your handmade week whatever’s on your needles, hook or cutting-out table.
I’m preparing a talk on Scandinavian quilting too. I have Trine Bakke’s Scandinavian Quilt Style book already – it’s one of my favourites, really inspiring and achievable projects; but if you know of any other interesting source materials, I’d love to hear – I need to impress! I’ll share all the details when I know more.
Have a lovely week.