I've changed the way I think about quilts that I make to donate or give away. I've been reading some threads on Facebook recently regarding charity quilts and the thought that we sometimes give away the stuff we don't like to charity. Charity gets our left overs. One conversation was on giving "charity" quilts to wounded veterans or other worthy organizations and "it's ok if it's not perfect, just give it to charity". Charity quilts somehow have a negative connotation.
So, I've decided rather than using the term "charity quilts", I'm going to start using the term "Gifting Quilts". I make a lot of quilts each year that I give away. Some I plan ahead of time and choose a pattern and fabric that I hope the "giftee" will like. Some quilts I don't plan ahead. I sometimes like to try a new pattern or technique, colours, or quilting design and I know that I'll probably eventually give the quilt away.....I just don't know who to yet. Some quilts I sew make use of my leftover fabrics - my scraps,
These scrap quilts don't have any less value that the quilts where I purchase fabrics and sew with a recipient in mind. These fabrics costs money when I originally purchased them. There is often a lot of time involved when I make these quilts as well as a lot of thought and planning to use up as much as I can. I like to think that I am being a very resourceful quilter by using what I have to make something beautiful.
I have set myself a challenge for the year 2017. I want to finish one project each week....that's a total of 52 quilted projects this year. I have no need for 52 quilts in my house, so I will be finishing projects and "gifting" them throughout the year. I also have a lot of UFOs (unfinished objects) or projects that I would really like to finish this year. I have a dream of starting 2018 with nothing to do!!!!!
I have been combing both of these goals this year by working on UFOs and meeting my challenge goals for 2017.
This Black and Gold 9-Patch quilt is an example of meeting these needs.
I recently became aware of a friend of a friend who is fighting cancer. I felt lead recently to make a quilt for her. I asked her friend what her favorite colors are....black, gray and gold. I remembered a project box was labeled "black blocks" and pulled it out to find 23 Black tone-one-tone 9-patch blocks. I arranged them on the floor and there were 20 blocks that looked good together. I found some gold fabric left over from the backing of a recently finished quilt. The quilt was easily completed and I loaded and quilted it (on my Handi Quilter Avante) this past week.
I love how the gold thread (Wonderfil Specialty Thread, Master Quilter #15) really shows the feathers in each block and I was able to move from one block to the other by quilting continuous curves in the sashing. The stitching in the sashing and border only shows on the back of the quilt.
I machine sew the binding to the back of the quilt and bring to the front and stitch it down with a decorative stitch.
Although this quilt has made use of my "leftovers", I put the time and effort and my skills into this quilt to make it the best it could be. I don't believe that "charity" projects should be 2nd rate or not our best work. While I stitched and quilted, I thought about the lady who would receive this quilt. I prayed that her days would be peaceful as she faces her uncertain future.
This quilt has now been gifted and my prayer is that the giftee will know she is loved and the quilt will provide comfort to her.