Tuesday, June 17, 2014

my favourite mini quilt

Yesterday was my best friend Michele's 40th birthday!  I am sure she loves me sharing that with the world ;)  But hers is extra important to me- she survived a rare SCAD heart attack a few years ago, so after having had to face the possibility of losing her, I am all the more grateful to have such an amazing friend in my life.

For the big 4-0, she put in a request over 6 months ago- admiring the mini quilt I have at the cottage with and Emerson quote, she asked if I could make her something similar with a quote that has been a mantra of sorts for her since her heart attack:

"Do not let yesterday take up too much of today." 

For months I waited for my inspiration to strike.  How to make the quote and the fabric come together into something inspiring and beautiful.  It stumped me.  Then I got to thinking about life, and how we are all made up of these random experiences, some good and some bad, but how they all meld together to form us as a person.  How often it starts out one way and then takes on another path, a diversion.....about all the colours and textures that make up a life.  Kind of magical.

I set out without any end plan.  I just started piecing bits of neutrals together.  Got out some fabric paint and stamps.  Pieced some wonky letters in colours where I wanted impact.   Tried my hand at  some embroidery.  And slowly brought it all together. The more randomness I added, the more cohesive the piece started to look and the more I liked where it was going. And here is the end result!

The quilting included some new frontiers for me, and I went with the same carefree attitude I had with the piecing. I channelled my inner Krista Withers and started filling negative space with swirls, pebbles, lines.  The quilting is dense and the resulting texture is amazing.

Added sections of clamshells and waves and used touches of hand stitching to accent the stamped letters and to outline the pieced ones.

On the back, the London subway map fabric (to represent time she spent living in England). And some hanging sleeves with a birthday message :)  For the binding, I continued with the scrappy theme.

It was gifted yesterday, and Michele declared it was her favourite gift she received (which pretty much brought tears to my eyes).  Then we had a lovely afternoon at the spa....now I am HOPING this is indicative of life in our 40s?!?!

Happiest of birthdays, Michele xoxox


Jenn @ A Quarter Inch from the Edge said...

Such a wonderful birthday gift! I love just about anything with a quote, but am often stumped on how to make them into quilts. Great idea to stamp the words! Thanks for the inspiration!

Kelly O. said...

this is gorgeous!! what a labour of love!

Will Cook for Shoes said...

Simply amazing!!! What a beautiful gift, Kristie! Your talent is just incredible.

Kelsey said...

Wow Kristie this is incredible. Thank you for sharing the story and the results :)

agnes said...

Your embroidery is beautiful! What a wonderful gift for your friend.

Shay said...

All that quilting is stunning. I love this mini, and your friend is very lucky to have you for a friend!

Katy Cameron said...

Love this, smart lady getting her order in early!

Unknown said...

Wow. LOVE.IT!!!

Isisjem said...

What a great present. I love all the little details!

Michele said...

It truly is fabulous and I know that she will cherish it always.

Tally said...

I just discovered you blog this morning and have to post a comment subito :-)
This quilt is awsome! I will come back to look at the details and maybe take some inspiration for a work of my own.

Hi from Hamburg