Saturday, August 18, 2012

It Takes a Village

It's that time again -- Amy has her fall edition of Blogger's Quilt Festival active for a week, starting today.  If ever you wanted to see an encyclopedia of quilt goodness, it's worth taking a stroll through all the submissions.

I am going to submit my "It Takes a Village" because of what it means to me.  I love this quilt.  I love the women it represents.  I love to quilt.  

Seriously -- take a minute and walk through the incredible quilts and stories over at Amy's Creative Side!

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I am a scrap hound.  I admit it.  I like it.  I profit from it!
I call this quilt "It Takes a Village" for a very special reason.  Only about 40% of this quilt is from my scraps.  The rest have come from my friends in the village where we lived outside Chicago.  It's all batiks and I haven't done much with batiks in the past few years.   A few of them, however, work mainly in batiks (to my advantage, I'd like to say) and aren't particularly fond of small scraps and using them up (to my advantage, I'd like to say!!!!!).

When we would get together to sew, it was always great fun to find a little baggie of snippets.  Some might be a bit too small to use but many could easily become 1.5" squares or greater.  And there was one particular trash basket at MacQuilts house that was always worth going through if I could get there before the cleaning lady.  My goodness, I've found some great scraps in there.  Tsk!  Tsk!

Even more touching for me have been the times that a package would show up at my door after we moved to Kentucky and there would be baggies of cute little batik goodness in there.  Hence, the name of this quilt.

I did lots of "cutting" for it but not in the usual sense.  I pulled out all my 1.5" squares, some 1.5" strips,  trimmed up all the donated scraps, and started sewing!  This has been such fun.  Between the fabric and the randomness of it, it really was "grab and go" sewing.

The quilt is modeled after Tonya Ricucci's "Lego" quilt that I found on her site about a year ago.  There are a number of posts where she talks about her process and that led to a plethora of similar quilts being made and enjoyed by other quilters.

Basically, these are 10.5" blocks that are set 6 x 6 so the quilt finishes at 60" square.  As I started to lay it out, I wasn't thrilled with the fairly apparent demarcation where all the blocks were coming together vertically, so I changed the setting a bit.  The first row is six 10" blocks.  The second row starts with a half block followed by five 10" blocks and ends with another half block.  That breaks it up a bit.  You can certainly still see the blocks when you look but it's a bit less obvious. The third row is six 10" blocks and so on.

As I laid the blocks out, I actually looked for places where the "logs" were the same fabric end-to-end -- or at least similar.  This is the first time in my quilting life that I wanted same fabrics touching!  That helped break the lines a bit more.  As you can see in the red piece here in the corner, there are two blocks there but the same fabric is a bit of a fooler unless you look closely.

So -- I love this quilt.  It's really not mine.  I made it but the fabric was from special people who are now in Chicago, Iowa, and the Bluegrass area of Kentucky.  My intention (once I get it labeled and washed) is that it goes to them.  It can travel among MacQuilts, CookingMama, Mom22SmartChix, MyNeicetheQuilter, LogCabinQuilter, and ShirasGram.  They can keep it as long as they want (years!) and then pass it on to the next one.  I certainly don't need it -- I've had my joy in looking at the fabric, playing with them, remembering the person that shared them, and often recalling the project they were used in.  Aren't quilting friends the best?

I would absolutely make this quilt again.  It's a great way to use those 1.5" strips of all sizes and walk down memory lane.  I hope you're finding time to be creative and remember those you enjoy sharing your quilting with!  Jan

52 comments:

JOY @ http://joysjotsshots.blogspot.com/ said...

I so love your blog and wonder how in the world you get so many quilts done? I've been cutting on a 7-shirt quilt for 3 evenings now. Hopefully start sewing today while I noticed you'll get 2 or 3 finished while I'm working on this one. I've been stalking your blog for a couple of months now and really enJOY it. I too am a scrap hog because folks think of me and want to know if I want their scraps and of course I can't refuse. Keep enJOYing quilting for fun.

Mary said...

What a great quilt and such a good story to go with it. Thanks for sharing the construction tips.

Pat said...

What a wonderful idea, and what a special quilt. May it travel with joy!

giddy99 said...

It's beautiful!

Michelle said...

I love it! Saw your link at Be Different Act Normal and had to click through to see if it was a Lego quilt. I'm making slow progress on my own.

Dora, the Quilter said...

It's an amazing quilt made all the more special because of the history of the fabrics and the future of the quilt.

One Minnesota Quilter said...

Fantastic quilt and story. :)

Judy

One Minnesota Quilter said...

Just looked through your Flicker photos. I think you have made most of the quilts I have on my list of quilts to do - we have the same taste!

Your quilts are beautiful. Love the scraps....my kind of quilts. :)

Judy

Sally Hamilton said...

Such a sweet and sentimental quilt. Lovely.

* said...

What a great idea. I love scrap quilts but seem to have a hard time doing them. This might be a good jump start for me. Thanks.

Country Threads said...

I've wanted to make one of these but have found myself wrapped up in other projects. Love yours!!

Nann said...

I've been working with batik scraps, too -- each is like a little jewel. Your quilt sparkles!

Slight correction: she's Tonya, not Donna....

Cheryl said...

Just when I'm ready to ditch my bins of scraps I run across a quilt that shows why I save them....this is a beautiful example of scrap quilting. Your story of how the scraps were acquired is warming...just as the quilt will be.

Teresaquilts said...

oh what fun, I saw another one in progress on Scraps and Threadtails and tried it too but mine wasn't looking as good as either of yours. She used all brights so I thinking I need to stick to a thyme or style to get the right look. very nice, thanks for sharing.

Etcetorize said...

Wow! What a beautiful quilt and wonderful story behind it. I absolutely love all those colours together. Thanks for sharing at Etcetorize this week!

scraphappy said...

I have trouble seeing the block divisions in the finished quilt. It looks quite random to me. Imagine how difficult the construction would have been if it really was all put together in one big piece. Like a never ending border of torture! (Sorry -- I have a border phobia)

Love the finished quilt, and the story that goes with it.

Quilter Kathy said...

This is so amazing! I have studied it and couldn't figure out how you did the layout, so you did a great job! Thanks for explaining it...I learned something today!

Nicole@Show Off Friday said...

That looks wonderful! I quilt for fun too, but not as much as I would like to.

Connie said...

What a beautiful quilt and how neat to have batiks from so many different people in it. How neat that you'll be sharing this quilt with them! Thanks for sharing.
Freemotion at the River Linky Party Tuesday

Cyn ;-) said...

Perfect! What a wonderful and moving story about your quilting friends. I think they will be thrilled to 'keep' your quilt for a time. Super idea!

Crystelle Boutique said...

FUN!!! That is EXACTLY the right word for it!!! Love it!!!
You are one crafty girl....

Carolyn said...

Beautiful quilt! I love batiks and all the tiny pieces.

Esther Aliu said...

Fabulous!

I have one of these 'million pieces' scrap quilts on my WIP list and seeing yours makes me wish I'd started already.

It's looking great and I love the story behind it too...using fabrics from friends is such a lovely idea....if only I could handle a little extra in my stash!

Emily said...

AH-MAZE-ING!!! WOW, I am super impressed, my quilting skill are minimal, so this is impressive to me! I came over from the JAQ link up. Would like to invite you over to my craft/recipe party going on now. I've been hosting recipes for over a year and crafts for just a few weeks, so we are gathering momentum, would love to have you a part of it! http://www.nap-timecreations.com/2012/08/five-layer-oreo-dessert-and-tasteful.html

Glenda said...

Fabulous quilt almost makes me want to start one my self now but it will have to go on my wish list. Lovely lovely story to go with it. There must be hundreds of hours in that quilt. Cheers Glenda

Bunny said...

What a wonderful scrappy quilt. Gorgeous.

Allison said...

what a fabulous quilt! not being familiar with this pattern myself, I can't pick out the blocks at all - you did a great job of blending it all together. thanks for sharing the story behind this special quilt :)

fallingforpieces said...

I'm a total scrap hound, too! The quilt is great!

Anne said...

Oh I love how all those little scraps came together. How wonderful that they came from so many sources too.

Rebecca said...

Beautiful scrap quilt! Thanks for linking up with WIP Wednesday.

Peter said...

A fabulous scrappy quilt! I really like it.

Kati from Kati's Quilting said...

Wow, what a neat idea, I love the way it looks! It's so kind of you to share the quilt with your friends unconditionally. Thanks for sharing such a nice work!

Jill said...

WOW WOW WOW!! This is just amazing! I'm going to show it off on my facebook page!


Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
Hope you have a fabulous weekend!
Jill @ Creating my way to Success
http://www.jembellish.blogspot.com/

Aubrie S said...

You did a fantastic job of camouflaging those blocks! It's such a beautiful story and such a great way to be in touch with your friends. It's inspiration as my scrap pile slowly starts to develop...

Lynden Blossom said...

Lovely1 and a great re-purposing project! ;-}
Lynden
http://aneleganttouch-lynden.blogspot.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/An-Elegant-Touch-/162889457132788

KatieQ said...

I love that the scraps in your quilt have their roots in friendship. It turned out beautiful. It's a great idea to share it among your quilty friends.

Mary said...

Love it!

Jen @ frazzled 5 said...

Wow this is adorable. Such a fun quilt!
New Follower
Hugs, Jen @ frazzled5

Kim said...

Delightful.......I really must finish mine :0)

Happy sewing

Tonya Ricucci said...

LOVE it! woohoo, it is fabulous!!! I did not see how you put it together until I read further on - thought you'd done long rows. but no, very very clever. I love that you used so many fabrics from friends - that's actually the part I love the most about my quilt too. hurrah!

Jenny said...

What a wonderful quilt with so may memories of friends and times.
Great work on disguising the blocks you really have to look.
Cheers Jenny

Ginny said...

What a great story behind the quilt-makes it so special!

Sarah Craig said...

What a great quilt and a great way to gift it!!! Whoop whoop!!

Amys Crafty Shenanigans said...

Thank you for linking up to [Amy's] Crafty Shenanigans for TGIFF -- www.craftyshenanigans.blogspot.co.uk -- it is an amazing quilt!!!

Becolorful said...

love this and the history behind it makes it all that more special. It truly did take a village. :D Thanks for sharing on BeColorful.
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Melissa Corry said...

That is amazing!!!

Etcetorize said...

Love your quilt and the story so much that I'll be featuring it at tonight's Make it Great party. I hope you'll stop by to grab a featured button from the sidebar and link up again!

Alycia said...

Thats a great idea - and it turned out so beautiful. Now when you snuggle under it you can remember all your friends!

Kadie said...

What a wonderful idea! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Link It Up Thursday.

Judy D in WA said...

I love this made with batiks. I also love the story of your quilt. You've inspired me to do something with all my batik scraps...lots that were gifted to me from friends. Now I am pressing and cutting. Thanks!

Mary @ Sea Quilts said...

Thanks for inspiring me to hit the scrap bucket again. I don't know why scrap quilts are SO satisfying ... but they are.

Thanks for the peek ~
Mary

Lisa Olsen Gaston said...

Oh my! Just reading this on a chilly fall morning in my sunroom, excited about my turn with this beautiful quilt! Wonder if I will be in this sunroom, or a new one by the time it is my turn. You are the best. Friend, quilter, blogger, inspirer...my scrapbasketsssss exist because of you!