Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Michael's Office Quilt

Way back in the day when Michael was attending Concordia Seminary, I took a little class called Ecclesiastical Embroidery.  The idea was that you would learn how to do these fancy, hand-embroidered church symbols and then make a stole for your husband to wear when he was leading church services.  I showed up every week and enjoyed meeting with the other ladies. I also remember that I had no desire to actually make a stole.  That seemed like a lot of complicated sewing to me.   I remember asking the teacher, "What are we going to do with these squares when they're finished?" She said, "Nothing, they're just practice samples."  What!?  They were way too nice (in my opinion) to do nothing with them, not to mention the amount of work that it took to make them.

I remember one of the previous students came in with a simple banner that she had made with her samples squares.  It was to hang in her husband's office.  I was in awe.  I asked her how she knew how to make the banner and she said, "I just made it up."  What?!  I was blown away.  I had no idea that you could "just make up" a little banner, which was actually a miniature quilt.  I wanted to be her.  I wanted to have that skill.  I don't have a picture of her banner, but it looked something like this:

Dear lady who made the banner, I'm sorry I don't know your name, and I'm sorry that this little drawing does not give your little quilt the justice and credit it deserves.  It has been inspiring me for years.

Oh, how I longed to be quilter who just makes stuff up.

Fast forward 10 years later.  I was organizing my craft room and I unpacked those almost-finished squares.  Michael had just started his current job at our church and I knew that the time had come.  It was time to fulfill the quilty longing I felt when I was a newly married wife with zero sewing skills.

 Ta-da! I know how to quilt now.  Yay!

Here are my hand-embroidered "practice squares."

This phoenix is machine embroidered.  Michael has always loved the phoenix since its a symbol for resurrection. He always wanted a white stole with a phoenix on it to wear on Easter, but since he doesn't wear stoles for his current job, I thought I'd work it into the quilt instead.  (I'm still really happy that I never had to sew a stole.)

I also included some left over fabric from when Michael and I made some Advent paraments for our church in Saratoga.  (Now, before you guys are all like, "What!? Karen has the best husband ever! He does sewing projects with her."  This was our only joint sewing project, ever, and it was fun, but we don't sit around sewing together all the time.  However, I do have an awesome husband, just not a sewing one, which is okay.  I digress.)  Here are the paraments we made:

Here are the leftovers:

I also love this little leafy piece that I pilfered from my best friend Meghan's scrap bin.  It looks good with the little tree.

So that is the little quilt I made for Michael.  I think it really brightened up his office wall.

P.S.  For a baby who hasn't officially started crawling yet, she sure moved lickety-split across the floor to steal my drawing and photo-bomb my picture.  It was quite impressive, actually.

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