Monday, April 21, 2014

Nonnie's Quilt

Does anyone else have a hard time choosing fabrics and patterns for guys?

My dear great-uncle, Nonnie, turned 81 this past week, and I started thinking about a potential quilt for him many months ago, but my previous attempts at boy quilts have been sub-par at best.

Last year during garage-sale season I got it into my head that I would make a quilt out of old shirts. I thought a St. Louis 16 Patch with mens shirts might be my solution to the boy-quilt dilemma.

One night…concealed by mask and cape…I snuck into the closet belonging to Mr. Sexy Pants, and stole a couple of button-downs that haven't seen the light of day in probably a decade. (P.S. …do all other guys hang on to every article of clothing until eternity, and go postal when threatened with a trip to Goodwill? I swear there are t-shirts in his drawer that must have once clothed a porcupine, but Sexy Pants won't listen to reason when it comes to spring cleaning.)

Anyway, back to the quilt at hand:
St. Louis 16 Patch

I ended up adding one of my own shirts to the mix, and rounding out the rest with a trip to Goodwill. There were moments of doubt when I started piecing these together - I'm not going to lie to you. I was trying hard not to plan anything…just grab strips and sew them together. But there is always some point during this process when I lean back to stretch, take a look at what's going on in front of me, and think, "What the heck was I thinking? Ugh!" Does this happen to any of you? As luck would have it, this happened at a point I deemed too-late-to-turn-back-now, so I pushed onward.

I'm glad I did, because when I eventually pulled the quilt off of the frame and got the binding on, I couldn't help but smile. I don't know what it is about this one, but I really dig it. It's simple and all-boy. I'm also happy with the fact that these old shirts have found a new cozy purpose in life. No longer do they have to hang (forgotten forever) in dark closets, or cry out from a sea of thousands of other previously loved shirts at the Madison Goodwill for someone to please take them home.


Juki 2010Q & Grace FrameI got a call from Nonnie in Maine when he received his quilt on Saturday, and he was very pleased. I wish I could have been there to see him open it, but I know it will keep him cozy during his naps. :)

The quilt back is black yarn-dyed Essex Linen by Robert Kaufman, and the binding is from the freebie table that was generously sponsored by JoAnn Fabrics at Sew South! I quilted it on my Grace Frame & Juki 2010Q with a printed pantograph from the awesome Quilt CAD software by Grace.

Black & White Quilt Picture

Happy Quilting :)