Sunday, January 25, 2015

Retiring the Christmas Quilts for Another Year, and what I'm reading these days

We'll make this storytime today, shall we?

This was the first Christmas quilt that I made.  The blocks came from the two guilds I still belong to:  Binbrook and Caledonia.   Get off the quilt you stupid mutt.

At the Binbrook Guild I garnered several blocks from a Tinner Exchange.  You put maybe a yard of fabric in a LARGE coffee can along with a half-assed request about what you want them to do (in my case I wanted 12" blocks for a Christmas quilt).  The cans get passed around through the gals that signed up for the Tinner program, and eventually you get your can back filled with blocks.  The blocks should all include the fabric you enclosed at the beginning, along with whatever fabrics the gals needed to make the block they chose for you.  I am especially treasuring this quilt THIS winter because the reindeer at the top center was made by a longarm friend who just passed away. 

The other blocks came from the Caledonia Guild where we ran a Birthday Club.  The signup sheet for a Birthday club includes your birthday and your colour request.  The completed list is given to all participants.  At the meeting held during your birthday month, all the participants give you a block in your colours.  And they sing.   :-) 

I put the quilt together using a Christmas border print, sashing the blocks to make them the same size (always a challenge when everyone seems to have a different definition of 12" block, hmm?).

Next up is the family Grinch Quilt.  I made four of these - for me, my brother, his son and his daughter.  We have always spent Christmas together but that can't happen any more due to distance.  (Hellooo...Singapore?) 
The Grinch blocks came from the panel that was out several years ago, and the pieced blocks all have some reference to family things.  I put a different dog on each quilt based on the recipient.  You can see that mine is a poodle, and if you look at the dog in the photo above you will see what I mean.  Most notable is the star block with a martini print in the center.  ha ha...  The backings all were made from fabrics that reflected something special about the recipient and I wrote a goofy poem for the labels.  I had so much fun making these.
Last but not least is the quilt made from a jelly roll that I bought on one of Diane's bus trips.  A jelly roll for $15.00?  I couldn't turn it down.  
One jelly roll is NOT enough to make a king size quilt though, so I supplemented with fabrics from my stash.  But then I got stuck on the border.  I was piecing this up at Margaret's during one of our spring retreats, and she went shopping in her basement for me.  She had EXACTLY enough of that wonderful red print for the borders. 

These quilts are not just fabric and batting.  They're memories that make me think of people and places and events in my life.  When they get washed and put away again for the rest of the year I'm always a bit nostalgic.  Sometimes these don't get put away until March, but this year they were out and loved for two months.
On to books.  I just finished Close Your Eyes.  Hold Hands.  by Chris Bohjalian.  I've never heard of him before but that book was GREAT.  So I've picked up another of his at the library.  The other author I'm really enjoying is Cecilia Ahern.  Most recently I read The Year I Met You and it was a very good story.
I don't like books with blood & guts & mayhem, even though I was riveted to the tv watching Breaking Bad and Sons of Anarchy.  When I read a book I like something that is story, not gory
The end.

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