Wednesday, July 10, 2013

a gift of love

My best friend Sara is having a baby.  I've never been this close to someone who is with child, so I have learned a lot. As she finishes up her 2nd trimester, I wanted to give her something special. I am writing this in June when details are still fresh on my mind.  I made a list of goals prior to summer starting and a sweet friend of mine, Dona agreed to help me learn how to quilt by making a baby Hannah Jane a quilt.  Can you imagine my excitement?!!?  I was thrilled and immediately went shopping for fabric.   Sara and I talk on a daily basis, so keeping this surprise from her was so hard. Originally, I was going to wait until her baby shower to give her the quilt.  I couldn't wait and I knew she'd be grateful for this surprise.  

L-to-R, T-to-B all the fabric came in the mail, i sewed my first row together, our final decision on quilt layout, cutting squares, my new sewing machine, Faye quilting a bird, Dona making sure the seams were aligned, the bird stitched, me and the LAST STITCH!!
Dona came over one day last week and we made the quilt top.  I'm so in love with this quilt already. You wouldn't believe how long we discussed where each square needed to go (and of course, I wanted to make sure the birds and numbers were right side up!!!) Next week, we are going to quilt it by hand.

Quilt top is finished!  (yes, i'm wearing clothes!)

Setting up the quilt frame required these clamps and we had to make sure we pulled the fabric tightly. We put the quilt into the frame by safety pinning it all the way around. Then we laid the batting down and secured the quilt top with safety pins all the way around the perimeter.

At first, the thimble was my foe, but then we learned to how to become friends.  I finally got the hang of quilting...although that first square took me 2 hours!!  The end of the day drew near and Dona and her mom had done 3 times as many squares as I had.  I was the slow poke!

I returned the next week and got right to work.  It proved to going much more quickly which I was grateful for.  We finished up the top row of squares and the quilt was ready to bound.  Dona was gracious to teach me how to do a blind stitch and then rip it out when I was doing it wrong.  LOL  I got it eventually.

Sorry for the poor quality, but this shows you the whole quilt!  

We finished and I asked Dona if she would embroider a tag for me to put on the quilt.  Its nice to have talented friends.

Overall, I loved making this quilt.  Quilting is addictive.  It was made with so much love.  That baby girl isn't even here yet and she is so loved, Sara.  I loved learning this new skill and enjoyed my time with my friends.    I couldn't have done this without you, Done and Faye.  Y'all are amazing and such talented ladies.  Thank you for welcoming me into your home and helping with this gift of love.  

One of my favorite surprises ever