Saturday, November 26, 2011

First Quilt

My grandmother quilted.  She made utility quilts out of anything she had.  Fabric used sometimes was cotton, but it was also made out of poly blends, silky rayon, or other fabrics that were available.  In the center, she used old blankets and cut them to size.  She tied them together with yarn and put them on the bed.  Over the years, I have had to repair mine a few times, but still like to look at it and lay under it because it makes me think of her.  One time, when I was about 12, I was able to help her make one.  I helped with the embroidery and with laying out the blocks.  I am sure she was more than happy to let me do the tying too!

My grandmother later suffered from dementia and she did not make much, if anything, after this quilt.  I cherish this and I believe it sparked a passion for quilts!

After my son was born in 2008, I needed something just for me.  I needed something that didn't have to do with being a mother.  I pulled out a tiny singer sewing machine I bought when I was married and started sewing.  It was a bit of an escape for a new SAHM.  I found a pattern online and used fabric my mother had left after making my son's baby quilt.

I did not know how to rotary cut.  I think I made cardboard templates and cut out each piece.  The pieces were wonky (as you could tell) but even then I had the flair for scrappy!  I wanted the quilt to be bigger so I added sashing from scraps.  I hand quilted fire hydrants in it.  The batting was part of an old flannel sheet.  This ended up being a gift for a friend who was having a baby.  After I was finished with this little quilt, I was so driven to make more and become better!

I think if it weren't for my grandmother, I wouldn't be the quilter I am today.  I am so thankful that I was able to know her the way I did, spending weeks in the summer with her.


  1. Lovely that you have great memories of sewing with your grandmother

  2. i think your first quilt is very nice. lots of good grandma memories for many quilters, i think.

  3. I love this story, and your first quilt. My first was scrappy as well, and our grandmothers sound VERY similar. I recently lost mine. :( I have a few of her old quilts that are tied, with flannel or blankets used for batting, and made out of any kind of scraps imaginable. I look forward to following your blog. Nice to *meet* you.

  4. Your first baby quilt is adorable! Nice colorway!

  5. Second time around! So new at commenting on blogs and blogs in particular. I had copied the above url address previously. Anyways, your first baby quilt is adorable and I love the colorway!

  6. Cute quilt. Like you, I learned with my grandmother, who also developed dementia. When she passed my aunts made special point to make sure I received the quilt she and I made together. I feel her with me whenever I sew.