Tuesday, December 27, 2016

A T-shirt Christmas

Amid the multitude of Christmas activities and events in our household the sewing room and dining room table were in T-shirt quilt mode.  And the quilting elf finished with time to spare.  By two days before Christmas the dining room was ready for family gatherings again.

DS had dropped off a tub this fall and sweetly asked if I could make a quilt from his lovely bride's old t-shirts.  Of course!  Then the bomb...queen size please???   (Sigh)  I've made a lap size and a couple twin size, but never tried to wrestle one that big through my machine.  Well, here goes...  It turned out beautifully!

92 inch square t-shirt quilt
(Please ignore where I've digitally covered the blocks with her name to respect her privacy.)
There weren't quite enough shirts, so I added one of my own that was a Parent's shirt from one of their college activities.  It fit right in!  Can you see it?  The gold in the lower left.  A border of 6.5 inch squares cut from the extra t-shirt material helped make it large enough for their bed.  The backing is light gray no-pill fleece.  It should be cozy warm even without batting.

The most adorable shirt was one from her childhood. She was the flower girl for a cousin's wedding. The shirt says "Flower Girl  One step ahead of the bride."  So cute!  (It's the pink flower one near the center.)

A couple new tricks were used this time, and they really worked!
First, I pressed the seams open.  Later, my first stabilizing quilting was to use the walking foot to quilt 1/2 inch on each side of the seams.  The blocks were then mostly quilted with vertical, horizontal or diagonal straight lines using blue masking tape to keep my lines straight.  Super easy.
Second,  I used the Publisher program on my computer to make squares that I could play around with and determine the layout.  This helped me decide how long each of the blocks needed to be to make it all fit.  It was SO much easier than using paper and pen to do the math.  Blocks of all the same width made up a 80-inch row, then the rows went together.  The blocks don't match across and aren't intended to do so.  The borders were added last.  I didn't try to make the border blocks come out perfectly even either.  Just lopped the last block in the border off to fit.
Third, I pieced the fleece backing with a triple zig-zag stitch by just overlapping the two edges.  Nearly invisible!  So glad that worked.

With t-shirts on my mind, and considering they're expecting their first child, a baby T-shirt quilt quickly came together from my stack of Minnesota shirts.  They want a Minnesota theme to the baby's room.  I barely had enough shirts, but it worked.
Minnesota Baby 2016  36x40 inches.  Fleece backing.

And... just when you think you're all  ready to start digging in to finish up some UFO's during a cold Minnesota January....   DD arrives two days before Christmas and asks... "Can you please make us a really heavy and warm denim/flannel quilt?  Um....Queen size?   Here's two bags of old jeans."  Let's see.  Didn't I swear that the lap size one I made a few years ago would be the LAST denim quilt EVER???  That would be the one before I caved in and made the 60x72-inch quilt last May when DS asked for one for his birthday.  I wrote about it here.  Well, ok, just one more.... But why do they keep getting bigger?  LOL  Off we went to JoAnn's to get flannel.  And it was 60% off!

Looks like there's more quilting ahead in the New Year.  Hope your New Year is filled with quilty warmth and cheer!

1 comment:

  1. Those are some fun memorable quilts. The first jean quilt I made was queen size. It was super heavy and became a housewarming gift for my sister.