Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Henry's Quilt

I was really thrilled to make a quilt for my sister and her baby, Henry. I have made a number of quilts in the past, but for me personally, this was probably the most important quilt I've made.  If you paid any attention at all to my previous posts, you could figure out that Henry was born about a month after my baby was due to be born.  This was a time of truly mixed emotion for me, and probably still is to be quite honest.  I am so very thankful and feel so very blessed to have quilting in my life.  It allowed me to pour all the love that I have for my sister and for Henry into the quilt, when I was having such trouble expressing it in other areas. 

Did you have to stop reading for a moment and find a kleenex?  Me too.  Man, between this and the Harry Potter finale, I might never have a dry eye again.

Let's move on to the fun stuff, the quilt.  Yay! 

When I lived in Saratoga I made this fun quilt for myself.  I bought the kit for it at the San Diego quilt show and it was one of the first "real" quilts that I ever made.  I had such fun putting it together and I loved how it looked when it was finished.  I love all the randomness of the blocks.  Ever since then, I have always wanted to take a part of the pattern and make it into a baby quilt.  When I heard that baby Menz was on the way I knew he would be the perfect recipient. 

Emily did a lot of cute things putting together Henry's nursery.  With the help of my mom she made the bed skirt, curtains, rocking chair covers, and pillows (for the chair, not the crib).  Most of the fabric she used had been given to her by her mother-in-law, after she'd made a dress for Emily's niece.   I asked her to send me all the extra fabric.  (P.S.  Another thing I love about quilts is that the fabric itself often holds so many stories.)

When if finally arrived, I was so excited I started the quilt the very next day.  Luckily, I had the day off from work so I could spend the whole day working on it. Mr. Paws of course felt the need to help me with it, nothing new there.

I actually finished piecing the top that night.  I figured I was making good time since I wasn't leaving for Michigan for about 3 more weeks.  Sadly, my mom called a few days later with the news that my uncle had died.  (It's really sad folks, but I've used up my sad quota for this post already so I'm not going to expound.)  Anyhoo, instead of 3 weeks I now had 2 days to finish the quilt.  Lucky for me I work at a sewing store.  So, after working with a quilter all day, I threw Henry's quilt on Bella (our long arm quilter) and did the quilting, connecting the pieced top with the batting and backing.  The backing was a sweet piece of ticking fabric that my friend Debby gave me that had belonged to her grandmother.  I took the newly quilted quilt it to Bible study that night so I could work on pulling out all the basting stitches.  I was very tickled to see that my friend Dan was wearing a shirt made of the same exact fabric as the backing.  I have no idea why but it made me really happy.

Two days later, I sat in the airport, sewing on the binding as I waited for my flight.  (I'm so glad TSA didn't confiscate my needle.)  I finally finished it when I was in Michigan and here is is: 

I love it!  Here's a closer view of some of the blocks.

I love this piece from a striped shirt.  I found it in a scrap bin from Mama Said Sew.  I really like including unexpected pieces of fabric into quilts. 

Here is some fabric from The Sewing Circle (best job ever) and some leftover from the original pink quilt.

The little flowered piece in the nine patch was also from a fabric swap at Mama Said Sew.  I probably wouldn't normally have included that design in a boy's quilt, but finding this fabric was a super great score.  My mom had made Emily and me a baby dress and doll bedding from this same material.  It seemed fitting to include it in Henry's quilt.

This plaid piece was from my (great) Grandma Goggy's stash.  I thought it was so cool to incorporate some of her fabric. 

My friend Glenda from work was awesome enough to machine embroider a label for the back for me.

Here is Henry's already cute, pre-quilt nursery.  

Here it is after.  

I love it!

And here is the proud quilt owner himself.  Now, who wouldn't want to make a quilt for this cute little guy.  One sweet quilt = lots of love to Henry from his Auntie Karen.


  1. "Man, between this and the Harry Potter finale, I might never have a dry eye again." - Uh, YES. The quilt is BEAUTIFUL! I so love it, and it's even more beautiful because of the stories that tie it in with other people. You are right about the fabric - it really does tell a story! Okay, now I have quilt fever....let's make me one!

  2. Andrew and I just read your post. We both feel honored that we've received such a loving gift from you. As we saw the posting of the "before" and "after" pics, he commented, "The quilt really does just make the nursery." I agree! Thanks again!

  3. What a beautiful quilt. WOW! I want to quilt like you now. Can we plan a quilting evening?