August 31, 2011

Finally Finished

I finished adding the binding to the final baby clothes quilt.  This ended up being the 3rd of 3 that I kept for DD.  The others are a twin, a double, and this one a very generous full/queen.  I made so many others with her baby clothes many of them completely reversible such as this one is.  This feels like an end.  I'm actually glad to see it too.  Knits are such a picky fabric to use in quilts.  While it might be an end to the endless baby clothes quilts it's the beginning of the next chapter and I can finally close the book on everything I started three years ago.  I refused to part with any of DD's baby clothes and stored them away like a squirrel jealously guarding a winter's hoard.
Then my Dear Friend Heather told me about the conception of her son; we didn't know yet that she was having a boy.  That was a great day and I was so happy for her.  I still didn't want to share any of DD's old clothes but I thought, maybe if she was having a boy, which is ironic since some of DD's clothes came from her!  Lucky enough for my heartstrings she was indeed having a boy (who is now in Pre-K!) and that's when I first started allowing myself to pick things out of storage.  In fact Heather got every last stitch of neutral to boy I had.  Oh I did hold one back, you can see it in the heart in the bottom left corner of the above picture.  See the blue with darker blue stripes?  That was a footed sleeper, I bought it because my DH told me he was sure we were having a boy and I believed him.  We have a picture of me with that sleeper draped over my belly laughing.
And all of this got me to thinking.  My mother had quilted, my grandmother had sewn, why couldn't I make a quilt of these clothes?  So I did.  I took what the storage containers claimed to be dear goodness 52 gallons of clothes.  I spent at least two months first cutting out the seams and then stabilizing the knits.  Oh yes that's what I said.  I started with interfacing but that was a real ironing nightmare with all those clothes so I switched to the stabilizer and spray adhesive and then after piecing ripped it out of each quilt before quilting.  It was a real mess.  Yet that's where I started.  By that point I didn't know I'd found a passion that would allow me to explore every pent up bit of myself I'd ever boxed away.
My blog changed as I did.  Instead of just the odd mother who talked about her daughter and only sometimes mentioned any physical limitations.  I found this entirely new quilting world online.  Which is good because I've long since worn out the ear of any loved one that doesn't live with me.  Lucky for me DH and DD are still happy to listen most of the time.  Aren't you glad I still talk about my cats too?
Since I knew how hard it was to part with those darling baby clothes both of my larger baby clothes quilts bear a label proudly honoring the three moms who shared their beloved baby's clothes with me.  The quilting is feathers moving through sashing of the front between every block.  Mostly because I knew I had DD's quilts already tucked safely away, I knew I couldn't ruin anything and I thought it would make good practice.  Then the blocks are quilted with mostly double hearts, though there are some singles and a few triples to represent our family and the three wonderful women who shared more than just clothes.


Connie said...

Congrats on finishing all your baby clothes quilts! I can't believe you had 52 gallons of clothes! I wish I had my daughters baby clothes, I made a lot of them but between moves they were given away.

QuiltSue said...

That is just amazing - you now have 3 quilts of memories.

Vicki said...

Whatr a lovely way to preserve the memories and Tiny gives her seal of approval.

Heather Landry said...

Oh Liz! I'm over here teary eyed. I recognized some of those patterns even though the last time I saw them was 6 years ago! I'm so glad to have contributed to Jessica's wardrobe and your memories!! (And I did appreciate all of the neutral stuff for Mr. Brandon!) Your quilt is a work of art as always. Or should I say a work of HEART!