Amy's 1997 Quilts
last update: March 27, 1999
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1998 Quilts can be found here
I began quilting in November 1996, thanks to the encouragement of Lucy Anne, the manager at Quilter's Garden -- a quiltshop in Toronto. Once I found my sewing machine, I was ready to begin.
"Hearts on the Mend", 5x7", February 1997
The first quilt I completed was a tiny little thing. Following a pattern bought at another Toronto-area quiltshop, I completed this one just in time for Valentine's Day 1997. I named it "Hearts on the Mend" because I had a devil of a time with the prairie points and they needed a bit of handwork to get them to stay put. Machine pieced, machine quilted.
"Mashpee Night", 18x18", March1997
This is the first project I began, but the second I finished. During the same vacation on Cape Cod where I found my sewing machine, I had also visited two quiltshops and began collecting fabric. This project was inspired by the backing fabric I bought at Scissor and Spool -- an Alexander Henry print by Nicole deLeon (I love her work!) in creams, earth tones, blues and greens of wonderful cool weather things -- mittens, sweaters, moose, cabins, pine cones, apple pies, etc. (You can see a snippet of the fabric running vertically on the outer right strip of the centre block.) So I decided to do a fall themed pillow. My enthusiasm was so great for this project that I wasn't watching where I was going on the way downstairs to iron the blocks and I broke my foot on the stairs. Despite the pain, I hobbled over to the ironing board and finished my ironing. Yup, quilting makes you crazy. Mashpee is town we stayed in on Cape Cod...and the blocks were designed to evoke the feeling of the Cape at night (hence the center square of deep, dark blue sky and golden stars), surrounded by the colours of fall. Machine pieced and quilted.
"Amy's Folly; or 'Seam Allowance? What Seam Allowance?' ", 54x72", April1997
My first full-sized quilt. I was scared to try a real block, so I thought a simple patchwork would be easier. I was wrong. This was a really hard project for a beginner -- 540 squares and all those corners to match up! I began piecing it in rows and after a seminar given by a student of Mary Ellen Hopkins, I was told it would be better to assemble the top in 2s and 4s. So I ripped out the rows I'd sewn together (nearly half the quilt) and started again. My 1/4" seam allowance was less than consistent, so some of the patches are more rectangular than square. But it's MINE, and I finished it! The border is stipple quilted (rather closely) and I signed my name and my husband's in the quilting. The corner blocks are simple half-square triangles. I love half square triangles. This quilt was made to specifcations: it had to go from under my husband's chin and be able to tuck under his toes while cuddled on the couch. And it does! Machine pieced and quilted. (While quilting this piece, I realized the limitations of a generic walking foot.) P.S. Yes, the rocking chair is HUGE.
Next up, a little quilt for my Mom. Made of 4 small log cabin blocks, featuring my first pieced border. It was made for my Mom for Mother's Day '97. The hanging stick came from my own corkscrew hazel tree in my garden...every year it sends up one straight shoot, and this year's was the perfect size for Mom's quilt!
"Newton's Internet Bunny Quilt", 24x24", August 1997
This quilt was the result of a swap I organized. 7 quilting members of "The Warren" e-mail list (devoted to discussing rabbits as pets) and one friend from another quilting list each made 8 blocks. The only stipulations were the size (8" finished) and that theyhad to have rabbit fabric somewhere in the block. Each of us got one block from every other participant, and this is the project I made as a result. I did make up another block in order to get 9 for this layout. My blocks are the top center block and the left block on the middle row. Newton is my rabbit and this quilt hangs over her cage, but high enough so she can't nibble it! I machine pieced this quilt, but hand-quilted it...and I liked hand quilting so much that I was hooked!
I put this little quilt together because I had been working on a project that was all neutral-coloured fabrics (still in progress) and I needed to see some colour! These colours are still my favourites: chartreuse, celadon, soft blue, purple and butter yellow. The border is a deep grey-green. I machine pieced this top in August, but saved it to take with me on a vacation in Vermont. I hand quilted the majority of it while in Weston and Stowe, VT. This was my first project in the Broken Dishes pattern...
I began this as a gift for someone, but became so fond of it that I couldn't give it away! Another Broken Dishes quilt, I just whipped up 4 blocks and was pretty reckless in my colour choices. Once they were assembled, I just decided what size the inner border was to be and popped it on. And when I finally went to choose a fabric for the outer border, I was astonished to see that this heart/check print fit EXACTLY to the size of the top, so that it looked as if I had planned it! True serendipity. Machine pieced, hand quilted.
This is the top for a miniature quilt (9 3/4 x 9 3/4"). I did a slightly larger version (5x5 blocks of the same size) which was donated to our guild's miniature quilt sale (proceeds went to charity). What a warm feeling, having someone buy a quilt you've made and take it home with them. Sigh.
When I asked my online quilting guild for name suggestions for this quilt, my secret pal named it "Midnight on the Turtle Dunes". Perfect name...so after donating the larger one to charity, I quilted up this one and sent it to her at the end of our year's secret exchange. Not only was she surprised -- it seems she'd come to my guild's quilt sale and *nearly* bought the larger version, not knowing there was another just like it waiting for her! Good thing she didn't!
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