Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Quilt That Started It All

Amy's Creative Side

This is my entry in The Bloggers' Quilt Festival. My second son was just a few months old when I innocently picked up this magazine at the drugstore!  Who knew what a monster was about to emerge.

I knew how to sew and always wanted to make a quilt, but most of the patterns looked overwhelming and besides, I didn't know a soul who quilted. There were no quiltshops around and J. C. Penney was the only source of fabric in town.

This small project appealed to me immediately!  I had plenty of gingham in my stash.  First I had to enlarge the pattern.  The instructions on applique were one paragraph suggesting that I sew on the seam allowance around each piece before turning it under.  Many dogs and cats bit the dust as I taught myself to applique.

By the time I got the top together, I discovered Quilters' Newsletter Magazine and from their catalog I ordered a disappearing chalk to mark it.
I worked late into the night marking the quilt only to discover the next morning the quilting lines had disappeared due to the humidity.  My husband laughed and said I'd never finish it!  Now I was really determined and I marked it again with a pencil.  The batting was the old unbonded variety that made the quilt soft and cuddly.

Four c-clamps and some wood I found in the garage provided a frame.  I wasn't looking forward to the quilting part but when I sat down and started stitching, something happened at that frame. It was a sense of peace and serenity that I had never experienced before.  Quilting grounded me in the moment, connected me to the past and handwork has been my refuge ever since.

I wish you that same sense of peace, serentity and connection to the past in whatever you do!



  1. What a lovely story and such a sweet quilt.

  2. That is a pretty sweet beginning!

  3. Oh I love cats ... and I love quilts ... so for sure, I do love quilts with cats on it ;-))

  4. Great story - love quilts that were our starters and why. And I have that magazine!

  5. How cute!

    Check out my blog if you can...

    Margaret Gunn

  6. Love seeing your 70's version of the gingham dog and the calico cat - very charming. The pattern was originally from about 1920. Thanks for visiting my entries.

  7. Adorable quilt, I especially love the gingham dogs! The story about disappearing markers made me laugh! I just did one recently where the lines were disappearing while I was sewing :D oh, Texas humidity lo!!

  8. Love it! It reminds me of quilts my grandmother made.

    1. For some reason (computer glitch) I was unable to comment on your blog. The quilt is gorgeous and the story brought tears to my eyes. We moved to Ohio and lived near Toledo for two years where I quilted with Mennonite women for the relief auction at Maumee. That was an experience I will never forget...they taught me a lot about life, hand quilting and the food was amazing too.

  9. This is just wonderful! I have two cat so anything with cats really appeals to me. Very beautiful!

  10. Wondeful!

    Best Wishes
    Kay in Scotland

  11. What a precious quilt and a sweet story. Thank you for sharing!

  12. Wonderful quilt and a lovely story,too. Love the cats.

  13. So lovely to read the story behind such a cute little quilt. I love it! Juliex

  14. I have always loved these quilts. I am a hand quilter, too. I am so much comfortable quilting by hand than by machine. I am glad you picked up that magazine that day.