Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Keeping the Memory Alive- the top

A while ago now, I was asked a special favour from a friend of mine.  A friend of hers (that makes her a friend of a friend to me) brother had died unexpectedly at a young age (~30), and was looking to have a quilt created from some of his old hooded sweatshirts.  To be honest I both was totally honoured and scared to be trusted with such an important task.  In my previous quilts I've always used material that was easily replaceable, but this time I had to get it right the first time... not to mention if the recipient hated the design etc.  Not to mention trying to work with Sweatshirt material, eek!

But, I was happy to help her out, and accepted the challenge.  And then, I am ashamed to say I sat on it and sat on, it finding lots of excuses to not make those cuts into the sweatshirts and risk failure and an upset/unhappy recipient.

Finally, my mom took pitty on me and said she'd help me get started.  As two heads are better than one (and her brain being a much more experienced one), it was an offer I couldn't resist.  So while H was at work yesterday, us ladies knuckled down and got started.

After pulling out the 2 garbage bags of sweatshirts, I was paralyzed with fear and indecision..... how do I make this look nice, interesting, and aesthetically pleasing, while still use the logos and patterns of the sweatshirt?  We debated layout etc, but had a hard time visualizing it, so we went with the plan of cutting out the logos and graphics in as large pieces as possible, and then laying them out to get a better picture of what we were working with. 

After playing around we decided to incorporating the 5 black, 2 grey, 3 white, and 2 navy sweatshirts into stripes.  Several hours, coffees, and Timbits (a.k.a. doughnut holes for any of you non-Canadians) later, we had the plan, did some final trimming and adjusting, and then sewed the pieces together.  Now we have a quilt top that is ~52 x 57", which should be a perfect lap quilt.  So, note to self ... a dozen large sweatshirts is the bare minimum for a small quilt if you don't want a lot of "blank" fabric squares.

We were able to incorporate some fun features, which I'll save for a later post (due to my sad iPhone pics, since I bad blogger, forgot to bring my camera to the quilt party, duh!).  I think it turned out pretty great considering the anxiety just thinking about this thing was giving me.  I was worried about how the sweatshirt material would be for sewing as it is a bit stretchy, and the materials were of varying thicknesses, but it all went pretty smoothly.  I just took my time sewing the raw material, no interface or anything, and made sure I didn't stretch it out. 

Now comes the backing and then...... the quilting (dum dum duuuummmm)..... I can only that hope quilting through such a big "sandwich" goes as smoothly as the sewing of the top.  I think I might need you all to cross your fingers for me!

1 comment:

  1. I look forward to seeing the completed quilt. I started a t-shirt quilt back when I lived in Atlanta, and I remember how hard it was to actually cut into the shirts the first time. The quilt still sits in the bottom of one my bins of half-finished quilts, but it will be a special one when it's done...some day.


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