The Friendship Garden Quilt

Warning: this post is photo intensive!

036Let me introduce you to The Friendship Garden Quilt!

017 It comes by its name honestly, because it started out life as a bee block!

018I am part of a Flickr group quilting bee with 5 other ladies. We call ourselves We Bee Canadian. We each make 2 blocks for the month’s Queen Bee.

031When it was my month to pick a block (a couple of years ago!), I asked everyone to please make me two bow tie blocks using garden-themed fabric.

008Because we were all pretty much beginners, nobody’s 1/4″ seams were very good and the blocks didn’t square up very well. There were an awful lot of mismatched seams.

007Then I had an idea!

025I decided to cover some of the wonky seams with English paper pieced rosettes. Perfect! Before you knew it, I had hand-appliqued a flower in every single blank square, wonky or not!

033Because a garden should be an absolute riot of colour, don’t you agree?

011I used a bed sheet on the back. I think it would qualify as a vintage sheet. I remember having sheets like this on my bed in the 70s.

027The quilt is hand quilted in circles.

034I don’t think I’ll try to do hand quilting through a bed sheet again. I actually bent needles and had to use pliers to pull the needle through the layers. Ouch!

035Mr. C. did a marvelous job behind the scenes, don’t you think?

022I used black for the binding to set off the colours. Oh, how I love this quilt! It is so cheerful and bright and sunny! A bit of summer in the depths of winter.

010I hope it will be as loved in its new home as it is in mine 🙂

029These photos were taken at the sweet little Notch Hill Community Hall and Church on the only sunny day in January.

Linking up with the binding blitz at Julie Quilts and Lets Bee Social at SewFreshQuilts.

A Wedding Quilt for Pam

In 2012, Jenny at In Color Order hosted a block of the month party. Every month she posted a quilt square made of 1/2 triangle squares. Every month I made the block and stuck it away in a box.

034At the end of the year, I had 12 blocks, one for every month.

016Pam was always interested in the monthly blocks, and oooo’d and ahhhh’d over them as the stack grew. She really loved the batik colours. So I decided early on that this quilt would be hers someday. However, I am a slow quilter, and so I emphasize the “someday!”

019At the end of the year, I assembled my 12 blocks and decided that it wasn’t quite big enough. So I made three more for a 3×5 grid. Long and skinny. Perfect for the back of a couch or a good snuggle while watching a movie.

015This sampler quilt is also perfect for Pam because I think it reflects her personality. She loves trying new things. She will appreciate the fact that every block is different and yet created from the same foundation (triangle squares).

037In the beginning, I thought the quilt would look good with a green inner border. But I hated it and ripped it right off. Then the quilt top went into a box to be finished someday (did I emphasize “someday” enough?). Here it is with the original green border. Ick!

024 (2)The quilt languished while Mr. C and I put our retirement in order, sold our house and moved to the Shuswap.

026Then Pam got engaged! I realized I had the perfect wedding gift, just waiting in the wings. Out it came and I took it to my local quilt shop to choose the border, batting and backing. That’s always fun…the entire shop gets involved!

027I spent the next several months doing the hand quilting.

039My hands have been bothering me as I’ve developed arthritis, especially in my poor swollen thumb. So this quilt is done in large stitches rather than the tiny ones I had been trying to perfect.

038But you know what? I really like the large stitches. They aren’t big enough to be toenail grabbers, just big enough to not bother my hands as much. I made use of Mr. C’s Leatherman to pull the needle through until he bought me my very own jewelry-maker’s needle nose pliers. 🙂

022This quilt is special for another reason…

036It marked my journey through menopausal depression (blogged here) – I started it the same month I was diagnosed. During that time, I leaned heavily on a small group of friends – especially my buddy-bud Pam.

035Pam and would walk Millennium Trail every single week, almost without fail. She listened and helped me to re-phrase the negative self-talk into positive. When the quilt was finished, I was happy and healthy again 🙂

024So Pam, this one’s for you, with all my love and thankfulness for your friendship now and always!

017 Congratulations on your marriage! I wish for you a lifetime of wonder and joy with your sweetie, John! ♥


075Quilty hugs, always!

linking in with:
Slow Sunday Stitching

Lily’s Quilts Fresh Sewing Day and Small Blog Meet