Friday, 13 January 2012

Fit for a Queen

Sew Mama Sew has been running a Sewing Reflections + Predictions series for 2011 and 2012 and posed a number of questions to its readers regarding personal views of accomplishments and things to come. When I read the question, what did you make that you're most proud of? I decided to delurk and participate. 

only a small piece of the beautiful mess i made on floor for four months
The thing I'm most proud of making in 2011 is most certainly my mom's quilt. I began it in August. From then on, it took up most of my free time. In fact, I had to shift things around to make time for the quilt - everyone around me was privy to its progress, which, in retrospect, may have made me a boring conversationalist. The planning, the color, the fabric, the design...then on to the piecing, the piles of unfinished blocks on the guest room floor, nagging my husband to stop stepping on them, stitch ripping, assembly...then on to the quilt sandwich, and...gasp...hand quilting (my first time ever)...the nights of watching The Wire and and stabbing myself with the needle for dividing my attention...all of this going on until the night before my flight back to the US on Christmas Eve eve when I was hurriedly going between packing and hand stitching the binding on.

four blocks pieced together, draped over a curtain rod in my sewing room
It was worth it.

hand-quilting is surprisingly very relaxing and i loved this part, possibly the most

my 3-yr-old took this photo!
I didn't even have time to wrap the quilt. Instead, I waited for a quiet moment away from all of the other gift opening on Christmas morning - and I did it in a room away from everyone else. The moment my mom saw the bundle of folded fabric, her lower lip dipped down into a deep frown and she began to cry. "You made me a quilt!" I had folded the quilt so that the top couldn't be seen right away - all she cold see was the yellow backing - but her happiness at whatever it might have on the other side wasn't important. She instantly recognized the effort for what it was and we were both crying before the quilt was even unfolded.

This was the most satisfying gift I've ever given - a gift where both the giver and the receiver felt the maximum pleasure possible. All of my worries about the color not being quite what I thought her style was, about the size and her bed, about the design, about whether she would appreciate it in the way I thought only another quilter could....all of that was nonsense. For every visitor we've had since Christmas, the quilt has come out. She finds ways of bringing into conversation. It makes me feel so good that my quilt was received in the same way it was created: with love.

finished! queen sized quilt with a 10.5" drop

So this is what I'm proudest of having made in 2011. I'd be delighted to have another such story by the end of 2012.

close up of the hand-quilting - i used size 8 embroidery cotton

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