Ok, so I finally finished my magnum opus quilt. It was such a process and the end results were so great! My sister was blown away by it and the experience of seeing her open it was awesome!
I hope to be able to take some really good pictures of it with good lighting and staging at some point, but I was so excited to share it, you are stuck with the Christmas morning pictures. They really are quite touching despite the fact that we're in our sweats and without makeup.
I've been working on this quilt intermittently for over a year but I've been working on it solidly every free minute I've had since the first week of November. I really can't believe it's done! You know how when you have a really big project or event happening you can feel a huge void after it's done? I'm definitely feeling the void but it's a good void, I have time now to do so many other things I want to do!
I was up until 2:45 in the morning on Christmas eve finishing the label. I didn't actually get it completed but I got it to a point I was happy with so I could present it to her. It's just pinned on in this picture.
A week and a half ago while I was getting ready to do the quilting I started second guessing myself and wondering if she wouldn't like it. When she read the label and started bawling even before she saw the quilt I was reassured that she would love it.
It started out being a t-shirt quilt and grew into a very personalized memory quilt. It's made of her old t-shirts, vintage fabrics that belonged to my grandmother, fabrics that she picked out before she left for her trip to Italy, fabrics that my mom and I picked out, and other special fabrics that I collected while I was working on it.
Both of us were crying here.
We had to take it in another room so we could spread it out. She spent thirty minutes just laying on the floor finding all of the stuff in it.
It's kind of hard to photograph the quilting but this is it for now. I'll get better pictures at a later date. It looks like wood grain. It struck me as the easiest way to quilt it because I was able to work in smaller areas rather than the whole thing at once. It falls somewhere between a queen size and king size so manhandling it through the sewing machine was enough to keep me from making another large quilt for a while.
This block was all about my sisters trip to Italy. She lived in Florence so it's all about that city. The names of some of her favorite places are embroidered on it.
This is the chapel from one of our favorite places to vacation. We've been going there since we were kids. I took a photograph the last time I was there and used it to built this block. I had never done anything like this before so it was an interesting experience, it's all appliqued. It's a pretty amazing block if I do say so myself. I'm pretty proud of it.
This is the cottage that my sister lives in. Unlike the one above this one is actually a paper-pieced design. Also the first one I've done.
If you know her, it's no secret that my sister loves loves loves Led Zeppelin. I couldn't find a LZ t-shirt I wanted to use so I learned how to embroider. I'd guess that not many, if any people have embroidered the symbols of LZ before.
This is called collage quilting. I sort of love it and wish I had been able to do more of it on the quilt. I simply ran out of time.
Lyrics of her favorite LZ song...
This is the label before it was finished. I forgot to take a new pic once it was done. I added some little embellishments and the name of the quilt as well as one more line at the bottom.
Cheesy pic of us posing with the quilt just before Christmas Day dinner. The dog even got into the picture!
This was funny, so many of the quilt bloggers I follow photograph their quilts so creatively. They hang them off of barns and old fences and they look so awesome! This was my first attempt, which didn't turn out so wonderfully. It was muddy outside and windy and it could have started raining at any moment. It was a bit awkward but oh well. I do plan on doing some better photography of it in the future.
So, that's it. What do you think? I'm pretty proud of it, and I'm kind of glad it's in the family. If I didn't ever get to see it again I might be sad!