I have been exposed to sewing most of my life. When I was little, my mom would sew things for me- halloween costumes, dresses, and little accessories. We would go to the fabric store together and I would help her pick out a pattern and choose my fabrics. She would let me cut out the thin tissue patterns while she assembled the projects. I had no real interest in actually sewing anything myself until high school.
After sewing on my mom’s Singer for a few years and getting increasingly frustrated with her front-loading bobbin, I asked for my own sewing machine for Christmas in 2009. It changed my life. It was a Brother sewing machine and it had a top-loading bobbin, which made my sewing life a million times easier. I remember the first project I made with that machine- a pair of lounge pants. My mom had jury duty the day I made them and she said that I wouldn’t be able to contact her if I needed help. Much to her surprise, she came home from jury duty to me wearing a finished pair of pants! The top-loading bobbin made all the difference.
As I gained more confidence in sewing, I decided to work on a quilt. My very first quilt still has a special place in my heart even though it is full of mistakes. My second quilt was quite large and to this day I still laugh at myself because of the crazy way I assembled it (it’s a simple patchwork quilt…but I cut all 500+ squares by hand with SCISSORS. WHAT.). But they are full of lessons and memories, and so I love them.
But this post isn’t about those quilts. It’s about my favorite quilt. Picking a favorite quilt is like picking a favorite child. It seems wrong. But there it is. I have a favorite. This quilt came about quickly and randomly (see this post for proof that most of my ideas happen this way). I was working at a local fabric shop at the time and a customer had come in to pick out some fabrics for her own quilt. I was so enamored with her fabric choices that I took a photo to use for inspiration.
So I got to thinking and one afternoon right at closing time, I bought a bunch of fabric. I had no idea what I was going to do besides a quilt- no pattern, no measurements, nothing. I don’t really recommend buying fabric in such a haphazard manner, but sometimes it works. I got really lucky. The next weekend I started sketching and figuring things out.
Once I figured out exactly what I wanted to do, I sketched out a design and then scaled it (don’t ask me how I did this…I have no idea…I remember using algebraic equations and all of a sudden feeling like 8th grade math actually applied to my life) to 50” by 60”. I sewed it up very quickly and then brought it to work with me where by boss very kindly photographed it and wrote about it on her blog :)
For the back, I just pieced something together. No plans, no drawings, just happened in the moment. It was like a puzzle.
As I was sewing the pieced binding on I saw that the back corner didn't get sewn into the front of the binding (oops), so I made this awesome patch. I really love the Nani Iro selvedge, so I made it a design feature of the quilt.
I wish I wrote down how much of each fabric I had bought…I wrote it down at one point at work because people were asking about it, but I no longer remember…I think I had 2 or 2.5 yds. of the Nani Iro, and a half yard each of the Kona and voiles?
So there you have it. A peek into my strangely organized yet chaotic process! I still adore this quilt, 2 years after making it, and it is the softest and best napping quilt ever!