Saturday, May 17, 2014

It's Time for the Blogger's Quilt Festival!

It's been a few years since I participated in the Blogger's Quilt Festival, and I want to include the baby quilt I made for Simon last year. As friends and family know, this was a labor of love from conception to completion.
For anyone who might be visiting, Simon is our first grandchild, and he was born at the end of 2013. We learned of his anticipated arrival when our daughter and son-in-law picked us up at the airport last May with a big sign that said "Welcome back, Grandma and Grandpa!" To say we were excited would be an understatement :)

Since we were only here four months, I knew I had to get busy quick! I spent the first few weeks collecting fabrics in the colorway Tina had chosen: aqua, lime green, gray, and white.
All the while I was thinking through the design. Kyle and Tina wanted a storybook theme for the nursery, but I just wasn't having any success coming up with any ideas. Then Tina mentioned she was going to do an alphabet wall, and that was just the inspiration I needed!
I mapped out my design on graph paper, choosing to do different sizes of blocks and a variety of fonts. Then I projected the design onto the wall and traced my design onto newsprint paper from a roll. I hand appliqu├ęd each letter to a contrasting background, and as I finished each block, I taped it over the master design on the wall. It was easy to see where it needed tweaking, so adjustments could be made.
Once the blocks were done and sewn together, I took the top to the fabric store and "auditioned" it with a number of prints to determine which would work best as the border. My artistic sister-in-law, Sharon, went with me and helped me choose not only the border fabric, but also pointed out how a thin black sashing between the lime green and border fabric would make the quilt "pop". She was so right! A friend with a longarm let me quilt it on that, but being a novice, I chose to do a simple meandering design.

Although Tina had seen the fabrics, she had no idea of the final design until I gave her the quilt at her baby shower. I loved the look on her face when she opened it up!
And a friend at the shower took this photo of us together with the quilt:
Tina's taking a weekly photo of Simon this first year, and she's using the quilt as the backdrop. Here is a collage of the photos she's taken so far:

Now I'm in the process of finishing a baby quilt for our second grandchild! Our son and his wife are expecting a daughter in August, so maybe next year I can share that quilt with you. They are decorating with a math and science theme, so this quilt is very different from Simon's. I sure do love making original, special quilts for my grandbabies!

Voting begins May 24th, but you can go any time between now and then and look at all the lovely quilts. There are eleven categories, from mini to large, art, applique, hand or machine quilted, modern, original (which is where I've entered mine), scrappy and ROYGBIV. So much creativity, you are sure to be inspired!


Kathy said...

Wonderful quilt! Love the story and the photos.

Audrey--Quilty Folk said...

Beautiful quilt! Very special.:)

Mari said...

I just love Simons quilt. The colors and the theme are wonderful!
I know it will be treasured and I can't wait to see what you come up with for the next one.

tirane93 said...

yes! this is an adorable quilt for a new arrival and the colors are super! the various fonts and sizes make this quilt SING the abcs!

Andrea @ Mouse in My Pocket said...

This is a beautiful quilt. Congratulations on both of your grandchildren.

quilted fabric art said...

Perfect idea to make the quilt match the letters on the wall! But then all grandmas are smart aren't they :-)
Nicely quilted as well.

CitricSugar said...

What a sweet little quilt! Pretty and educational! ;-)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful quilt! I love letters and your design and colours are adorable! Lovely story!

The Bug said...

I love it - as you know :) I really like the weekly pictures they're taking - so creative!