Elizabeth @ Don’t Call Me Betsy is starting a new linky party on Fridays called Quilty Flashback Friday. Her kick off post and linky party are up on her site today, and she talks about one of the first large quilts she made: Quilty Flashback Friday: The One With My Castle Peeps Quilt.
Taking a stroll down memory lane, I want to share a quilt I made in 2009 with you today. Although I pieced my first quilt top in 1995 and made several quilts before this one, the creation of this flannel baby quilt marks the start of a period of time that really saw my interest and skills in quilting begin to rapidly increase.
My friends were expecting their first child, and I really wanted to make a quilt as a gift for them. They are really lovely people, and they enjoy astronomy as a hobby. They have made their own telescopes and live in a beautiful area that affords them dark, clear skies and lots of opportunity to star gaze. Thinking about them and introducing their child into their lives, I wanted to make a warm and snuggly quilt that they could wrap up their child in to keep warm when they were outside star gazing. Working with that thought in mind, I first selected a group of flannel fabrics.
In particular, I really liked the fabric with the puppy dog paw prints, because they are also the proud parents of a beautiful golden retriever. 🙂 Using Microsoft Paint, I then spent some time playing around to create a quilt top pattern and layout. I started with a screen shot of a baby quilt I found online and came up with an idea:
That I turned into my final design concept:
As this was the first quilt I had put together in some time, I recall that it took me almost a month to piece together the top. I recall being really excited about making up my own pattern and creating the first blocks. Especially because they turned out so well; it gave me a really big sense of accomplishment.
Along the way, I realized that I was going to have to consider what fabric to use for the quilt back, so the final fabric used in the quilt top was changed so that I could piece together a backing. Instead of the paw prints being the final border, I used more of the monkey print for the border instead.
Which left me plenty of material to make the backing.
While my photography at the time leaves a bit to be desired, I am just so thankful I have photographs of the quilt at all. Most of my earliest quilts are just memories with no photography to document them. I believe I just did some simple stitch in the ditch quilting with a bright yellow thread.
And last but not least, here is a photograph I took of the quilt just prior to packing it up to ship off. I was really excited about this quilt and it really catapulted me into years of creation that have brought a lot of peace, satisfaction, and joy into my life.