Sometimes, a great idea is only as good as how well thought out it is- how to accomplish it and what it will actually entail. I get great ideas, foreseeing how to make them work is where I get into trouble.
My dear friend was diagnosed with ALS in August. Went to lunch in September, she drove. She is the one who chose the Blue Bargello. By October, she had to sell her car and had to be helped to her feet and supported walking. By November, she is in a wheelchair, unable to move or reposition herself sitting. And in a lot of wincing pain. She is one of the most creative people I have ever known. She can make anything- collage and jewelry her favorites. She was a fabulous elementary art teacher.
My heart was just breaking seeing her unable to do anything creative. I had this bright idea that I could take my kid/novelty boxes of cut 5" and 2.5" squares to her house, with a fleece I drew a grid on and she could layout, with help, quilts for her grandchildren. My thought was we could layout one quilt a week, I could sew it, bring it back and we could decide borders, take it home, quilt it and start another. Apparently the idea took ahold of her. Everyone who visited her helped her layout quilts and tape the blocks together, putting them in columns for webbing. When I returned after sewing the body of the first quilt to work on borders, I was given bags of seven quilt layouts. I should have asked how many grandchildren at the beginning.
After I started breathing again, I had to figure out how to get these sewn and quilted. Once the squares were sewn together as you can imagine, the quilts were a lot smaller. I figured out to add lattice to the column quilts and coping strips around the smaller squares to fit the 5" ones. I ordered Bills fabric (the only fabric I bought). I made a chart for the quilts and all the component steps and freaked out. I took some quilts to the November retreat and one dear friend, Carolyn, sewed one all squares one, and one columns components for the lattice strips one. I had all those backings to make also.
No matter how fast I sewed and figured how to do the borders and backs, I was far behind. I got the Bills quilt on the longarm, but no time to quilt it. I had a flash of brilliance and asked some friends who own a longarm business, Chasen Dreams, for help. They are incredibly generous quilters who quilt tons of kids quilts for camps, vets, and other community needs. They said they would help me out. I dropped 5 quilts with them on Friday. Today, I finished sewing quilt 7 top and backing. Now onto the longarm for quilt 1 and then all that binding for 7 quilts- omigosh- get panicky thinking about it. They are about 55 x 68 roughly.
|Quilt 1 in squares|
|Ready for the longarm, backing made|
|Quilt 2 needs lattice to separate columns. Instead of pins, they used tape to hold 4 patches together.|
|Quilt 2 all sewn with lattice and borders, gone to Chasen Dreams|