Monday, January 25, 2016

Connie's Quilts...shame on me

Long, long ago a dear friend started making a quilt from her late husbands shirts.  Her progress was slow due to many unfortunate circumstances.  


It took her about 2 years to hand applique all the little shirts.


Her plan was to make several quilts for her and their children from his shirts.  Quite a job for a lady that had never made a quilt.  So after many discussions about how she thought she'd never get the job done I offered to help.  Oh boy did this man have a lot of shirts.


She trusted me to get the job done.  So I started planning for her quilt by drawing up an applique for the center of her quilt.   The plan has changed a little and there's 5 more quilts to make.  Oh boy,  I've got my work cut out for me.  One of the 5 quilts is already cut and ready to be pieced and another is in the designing stage.  Now to come up with a plan for the others. At this point I'm open to suggestions.  Over the next few weeks you'll be seeing more of these quilts.  I'm hoping to make them all before March.  Short deadline, huh?  I think it's doable if I keep the other quilts simply pieced and simply quilted.  Cheerleaders may be required!
  

I manage to get the wreath applique made and glued to the background fabric before losing interest(about 2 years ago)  The original background fabric we chose was way to dark and just not the right color.  This weekend I pulled a better fabric from my stash.  The little white flowers in the wreath kinda blend into the fabric but it staying as is.


I'll be doing invisible machine applique to stitch this down.  It will make this go along much faster.


 My favorite part of the quilt so far is these little love birds and tulips.


 This little basket is so darn cute I might just make a few for myself, in bright colors of course.


Designing quilts for me is more often than not a design as you go process.  The first plan for the shirt blocks was for them to be in a quilt all by themselves.  The quilt top was complete and I hated it, so I took it apart and let my imagination take over.   Now I'm obsessed with making these quilts even though it's WAY out of my comfort zone.  Quite the challenge.  So here's my plan so far.  I want to add their names and the date they were married.  The letters will be raw edge applique, much easier and faster.  She loves yellow and blue, so I'd like to add some more yellow and blue flowers somewhere.  The quilting will be simple because she's not a quilt it to death kinda gal.


Well I better get stitching, the clocks a ticking, wish me luck!

I'm linking up this post.  I've added all the blogs I link to in my blog list in the side bar.  The most current is at the top of the list, just click and go for inspiration galore.

~ Lea Anne ~
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35 comments:

  1. The design you are showing is perfect. Love all the little shirt blocks. Just the right accent for the center motif.

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  2. Love the baskets and shirts in the plaids. All made more special by the story of how this came about.

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  3. A beautiful, loving idea. Treasured heirlooms in the making!
    Standing back, the bottom point of the heart completely fades away. Red petals instead of white on those blue-centered flowers would bring it back. The space in the lower center of the quilt could benefit from more applique if you don't plan to "quilt it to death." The uneven balance between the upper and lower halves could be improved by moving the name to the lower half, or adding a center basket to the lower half.
    Love the plaid on-point triangles! Keep on quiltin'. Cwoosley12@yahoo.com

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  4. The little baskets and shirts are precious. What a wonderful way to use these shirts... very creative... and very nice way to remember this man.

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  5. Wow! That's beautiful! A lot of details. I've made 2 quilts from Dad's shirts so far. I thought I had a lot of shirts but they are quickly disappearing. Thank-you for sharing the idea.

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  6. Good luck with this big task. It will bring so much joy to the family, so whatever you create will be perfect!

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  7. Visiting from Design Wall Monday. Lovely idea for a good friend! I'm curious, what is your plan for the other quilts you need to make? Good luck on the project...it will mean so much to the family!

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  8. What a gift you are giving your friend. I, too, love the little baskets and shirt blocks. Your designs are always beautiful.

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  9. OMGosh, those shirts and baskets are the cutest I have ever seen. What a treasure in the making! Did she make enough shirts for the other quilts? If you have more I would add strings to make log cabin blocks with some of them and make plain log cabin blocks to fill into the quilt. I hope that made sense!! Good luck!

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  10. The disappearing nine patch looks good from shirts!

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  11. That is a huge undertaking. What a good friend you are. Rewards will come your way I am sure!

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  12. A great gift for the family. Churn dashes are great from shirts

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  13. Sounds like a big project but lots of fun. The baskets are cut but those little shirts are even cuter. Good luck! I'm sure you will do those shirts proud!

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  14. Wow! A lot of work, but these quilts will be so loved! Those little shirts are adorable. We'll be cheering you along! Thanks for linking to MCM.

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  15. I'm really in love with the little shirts, how cute are they? I think I've never seen something like that before... very good idea!

    5 quilts from now to March is a lot of work (I would be proud of myself if I make 5 quilts in the entire year), but I'm sure you'll get them and they will be loved. Have fun! We are here to encourage you.

    Greetings from Spain.

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  16. this is such a big project you have taken on for a dear friend. Amazing her late husband had so many shirts! The little shirts and the centre block are lovely

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  17. love this and you are such a good friend for taking on this project. your heart may need one to 3 more leaves pointing down for the bottom point to show up more. love this! you GO girl!

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  18. You are so sweet and amazingly brave! I love the shirt pillows that people make from a loved ones shirts usually with a short poem. Your project is so much bigger. My suggestions ... Can you pair a solid shirt with a complementary patterned shirt to make a 9 patch? Or several 9 patches. Maybe some 'braided' strips to frame an applique center. It would help build the quilt fast, then the center would be personalized for each person. You could also use strips from the shirt to make piano key borders. Good luck and please keep us posted. This is an exciting project :)

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  19. It's a big job, but you can do it! You are a good friend!

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  20. I love the design you came up with. Those baskets and little shirts are adorable. Perhaps some of the little shirts and 9 patch blocks.

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  21. Your heart applique brings this to life. Will her name go on the bottom, and wedding date inside the heart? Maybe just a few of the smaller red flowers on vines, vertically, between the baskets? You could get carried away with the vines and flowers, but I sense you need to complete this and move on! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Your friend will be overjoyed with your work-you have a huge heart!

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  22. I can't believe you! This quilt, a shirt of shirts is inspired and now times 5???
    What if some of them are much simpler? You are quite a maker, I am as always, very impressed.
    Luck be with you, LeeAnna

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  23. THe quilt is fabulous. You are doing such a great job. As for the others have you thought about the Log Cabin. The one block can be set in so many ways to give different effects and it's a quick and easy block to make up xx

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  25. WOW! Your design is beautiful! What a wonderful way to remember her husband (and those little shirts are so cute!!). A friend of mine is making a memory quilt from her nephew's shirts using Gudrun Erla's "Strip Stacks" pattern. I think her "Strip to be Square" would also be a good simple patten to use the shirts with. Good luck with your challenge. These quilts will mean a lot to the family. I hope you will get to present them in person and see the joy on their faces. I'll be cheering for you! :o)

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  26. Lea Anne,
    How darling!! You are one thoughtful friend (and I bet you wish there were FIVE of you about now) - !!!!! I know how she and the family will LOVE the quilts. Peaceful sewing.

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  27. You are doing a good job and it's looking great. I loved the close up of that little shirt - it is so cute :)

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  28. This is such a beautiful work in progress. And those tiny shirt blocks are so worthy of a finish! The applique you have designed are gorgeous and I can't wait to see this come together! I agree.... Raw edged is the way to go!

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  29. Those little shirts are just too darn cute and I love the little basket made of plaid. Good luck with this mammoth undertaking.

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  30. Great start - and cute blocks, though time consuming! When I used my late FiL's shirts to make four double quilts (as a start point - I found that I had enough fabric to go on and make several more) I made pieced blocks to a standard size (I think that I chose 8 1/2"). Bento box, square in a square, 3d bowtie, flying geese, pinwheels, stars and whatever else I could think of. I made a cross between a medallion quilt and a 'sew a row' laying out the blocks until I was happy with how they looked. Good luck with your endeavours - it's a great thing that you are doing!

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  31. What a wonderful labor of love, will be such a comfort.

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  32. Wow what a beautiful quilt! I love the flowery applique mixed with the plaids and tiny shirts!

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  33. This is a beautiful and wonderful idea that will be treasured for many years to come. Keep up the great work, and I think you can finished all by the deadline you have created for yourself. I can not wait to see what you will do for the other quilts!

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  34. Beautifully done! Love all those little shirts, very cute.

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  35. I was hoping you would share how to make the little shirts?? Please??

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