"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will."
Mahatma Gandhi

Monday, October 7, 2013

FOR PAUL

Every once in a while I toss out a "How to Make a Quilt" post.  Not because you all need them, but because I like to share how it is that I make a quilt and perhaps inspire and amuse along the way.  

The first step in my quilt making it to identify who my next project is going to.  This is important, and if you go through my blog, you will see that I give 95% of my quilts to friends and family as gifts.. of love.  

Once I know who the next quilt will envelope, I think of that person very seriously and do my best to match the quilt to the person.  The Green Paw, which I am sending off to the quilter soon, I made for my husband Dave.  I thought so long and hard about him and the quilt.  And, I got the match down just right--the green leaves of Western Pennsylvania, where he grew up, the traditional Bear's Paw, so familiar to him, and the contemporary touches to bridge that gap between the simple life growing up in Western PA to the spot where he landed, here with me in New England.  

Now that the paw is done, I am moving onto a new project.  I have identified the loved one
Our dear son, Paul.  
It was a year ago that I picked out the fabrics and design for Paul's quilt, and today I started laying out all those beautiful fabrics
The Blueberry Tonga Treats Collection, Timeless Treasures 
I chose these fabrics because they are Paul, with names such as Sage, Stone, Jungle, Sky, Earth, Moss, Maize.  As an avid outdoorsman, these are the colors and things he surrounds himself with, and now I can capture them all in a quilt for him.  

The quilt design is very similar to Kaffe Fassett's Diagonal Madness, which I previously made for dear friends John and Nancy.  This batik version is nothing like the original DM, which colors would not have suited Paul and who he is.  Instead, it's a quilt that captures his love of nature using the medium of fabric.  And, I hope it also shows him that I definitely get it, this love of all things outdoors, and that this means more to me than he will ever know.  
Thank you Poppy for holding the pattern in place for me.  
A few important steps I left out of this post:  

1.  Embrace your OCD
2.  Go out and buy the most expensive fabric you can find.  It's really good if you pick a discontinued line, because then you feel compelled to buy at least 1/3 too much in case of errors.  
3.  Take all that lovely fabric and cut it into all kinds of pieces.
4.  Sew it all back together using the most complicated graph on the face of the planet.  Make sure you are using a sewing machine that cost a million dollars.  
5.  Obsess over every seam, placement, thread, and take as long as you want.  Ripping out seams is an important step, even if there's nothing that needs ripping out, you should do it anyways.  Ripping out seams is not optional.  You must do it.  
6.  Once it's done, spend a bunch more money to have a long-armer sew a pattern over all of your lovely work.

And, then, my friends, share your love.  



Sunday, October 6, 2013

A MISTY SWEATER

I am finishing up a number of nearly done projects. Love that feeling, don't you?

One of my first finishes is a new sweater for Misty. As the cold New England weather slowly creeps in, the girl needed a nice new winter garment. I had knit the pieces over the summer so only had to assemble them. 

I knit this with a Cascade 100% washable wool yarn left over from some hat making. The pattern has hearts knit in between the ribs, a warm chest panel and snug turtleneck. Misty is very pleased!