Recently I was asked by Candice Fraser if I could make a quilt from her mother's clothes. Candice has recently lost her mother, and she wanted to be able to cuddle up with her memories. Such a great idea, how could I say 'no'?
There were, however, one or 2 obstacles. The biggest of these being the small number of cotton garments and the large number of polyester items. There were also some rayon options. So we decided to put the polys aside and work with the rest. Fortunately, it seems Candice's mum had quite a coordinated wardrobe. I cut a lot of pieces into 6.5 inch squares. Of course, as soon as I moved the rayons they had wriggliest sides imaginable. Piecing them was like piecing jelly worms. I still have not found a spray that will stabilise rayons, but I have tried a few.
Some extra squares were needed - enter the ever versatile 9 Patch. A sudden idea to put a lopsided diagonal through the quilt top, and things started to come together.
We had decided on a cotton backing fabric, and a quilting design that reflected her mother's love of sewing. Candice wanted a wool/poly mix batting for cosiness and washability. As several of the fabrics were less than robust, I chose Matilda's which has a scrim base for added stability.
Quilted with Eggplant coloured thread and bound with the last of the black and white cotton shirt, it is now with Candice, and I could just about bet she is snuggled on the sofa under the quilt as I write this.
As a final touch, I took the pocket from the shirt and stitched it on the back. I thought if it was my mum, I would probably write her notes and put them in the pocket.
It was so nice to be able to help Candice keep her memories.