Monday, May 20, 2013

Erin's Quilt - WIP

Two years ago, our eldest granddaughter, Erin, asked, "Grandma, will you make me a graduation quilt?"  Now who could refuse a request like that!  

Even though I had two years' lead time, I was anxious to get started, so I looked at patterns and fabrics, and came up with a pattern by 3 Sisters for Moda that I thought would work.   (I know--a true artist would design an original pattern.  But I consider myself more of a craftsperson than a designer.  I'll experiment with original designs with scraps - or for quilt guild challenges.  But when I'm purchasing this much fabric for a special occasion quilt, I'd rather go with a sure thing.  So please don't judge.)

I loved the mix of applique, and the colorful pieced border.

I consulted with her mom, and she approved, so off I went to purchase fabric.  (My blogging friend, Duni, would approve of my choices, I'm sure!)  There were pretty small-scale floral prints in shades of pink, blue and green, an assortment of cream-colored background fabrics, and a soft blue tone-on-tone floral for the backing.  The florals were from the Aviary collection by 3 Sisters for Moda -- high quality 100% cottons.

And all those pretty fabrics sat in a box for awhile -- for QUITE awhile -- I had two years, right???

Several months later, I cut all the strips for stems and the pieced border.  Using our AccuQuilt GO! Baby, I cut the 358 freezer paper templates for the leaves, then ironed each template onto fabric.  I also created a template plastic guide for placing the leaves around each stem.

And then came a long, hot summer and a busy craft fair season, followed by a holiday Etsy rush, and then another tax season.  All that time passed in a BLUR-r-r-r-r!

So after tax season, I began some serious hand stitching -- needle turn applique. I completed the stems in a weekend, but I grossly underestimated how long it would take to stitch all 358 leaves!  I'm still not done, with graduation only three days away (and I have a custom Etsy order, a tight deadline free lance research project and a L-O-N-G drive to Colorado to complete in the meantime).  

SO-- I will give her a sneak preview -- along with my apology for being late - - and a card with some cash.   And Erin will have her finished quilt when she moves to Lincoln next Fall to attend the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  (One less thing to move from CO to NE.)

I quilt my big quilts by credit card.  I haven't attempted to quilt anything larger than a baby quilt or lap throw on my home machine. I am fortunate to have a talented quilt guild friend, Kris Vierra, who is an award-winning machine quilter.  She's been quilting for me since before she became famous, and she lives only a few blocks from me.  Her quilting can turn an ordinary quilt into something fabulous.  She has a long waiting list, but it will be well worth the wait!  I'll show you all the finished quilt sometime this Fall.

THEN, I'll need to begin working on a graduation quilt for Erin's brother, Daniel!  I have the pattern (much simpler -- no leaves or hand applique!), but I'll need to search for "guy fabrics" -- AFTER Erin's quilt is done!  I'll have less than a year to complete that one.

LeAnn aka pasqueflower


  1. I love the fabrics you chose -- and I can't imagine cutting out, much less appliqueing, 358 leaves! I'm sure Erin won't mind the wait!

  2. Whew! That's quite the project! My mother-in-law is a quilter, too, and she just started a design with a lot of hand-applique too. She's irritated that it's taking so long, haha. I bet your granddaughter will love it!

    1. Thanks, Paige! I can totally relate to your MIL's frustration.

  3. Her quilt is looking great! I know she'll be happy to wait for a handmade piece from Grandma :)

  4. WOW! Such an accomplishment! Awesome! I think I have that pattern, and it is not easy pattern! I'm not sure that I would try it! I can't wait to see the finished product!!!!

    1. Thank you, Linda. I will definitely share the finished quilt.

  5. Wow! This is so beautiful! I'm sure Erin will understand and will appreciate her quilt when she does receive it.

  6. This is a scrumptious quilt! You have such a great sense of combining various fabrics. What a skill.