Friday 7 February 2014

All hail the boozy quilt

I've made a couple of quilts recently, as gifts. I thought it would be lovely. Because it's so satisfying and soul-affirming and soaringly-full-of-wonderfulness to make quilts as gifts for people.

Flossie Teacakes says that "Making a quilt with a particular person in mind always feels like spending time with them". I don't know really that I subscribe to that view. Unless we're talking about feeling as if you're trapped in a small room with that special person, who isn't talking to you at all but instead throwing bits of their chosen fabric randomly about the floor.

And so it was with Eldest's quilt, which was made roughly to Amy Butler's Gypsy Caravan free quilt pattern. I find it, in retrospect, utterly unsurprising that there are so few completed versions of this quilt pattern to look at online. In its efforts to be oh-so-random, it manages to be far too simple at the same time as requiring almost every piece to be cut to a slightly different size. Eldest is happy, but I wish I'd chosen something a little more detailed for her; I wish that the need for speed hadn't taken over quite so much. Mind you, you don't want a birthday quilt six months after your birthday, either.

One thing my daughter and my mother-in-law seemed to have in common was a choice of incredibly bright fabric that made my eyes go all wobbly. Here is the second gift: based on the snowball pattern by Cluck Cluck Sew. The picture below does not do a bit of justice to the scariness of the full fabric choice - Mr Coffee described the quilt, seen as a whole, as 'fighty'.

The process made me realise - I'm not really a machine piecer. I don't really enjoy cutting up stacks of little squares and ironing loads of tiny seams. Much as I love giving something handmade, I found the process of making-to-order quite stressful and - crucially - something that could only be done whilst sober. It took me well over a year to hand sew my Liberty star quilt, and I enjoyed every minute of it. And many - really, honestly, very many - of those minutes were enjoyed with wine.

Dry January is long gone. I'm ready to get to grips with my next boozy quilt.


  1. Oh, get away with you, they are super, especially the first one and they are done! Unlike several here.

  2. They're wonderful, definitely worth all the sobriety. I hardly ever use my machine, most of my quilts are made by hand, it's slow and easy and far less dangerous if your attention wanders. It's also why there is hardly ever a new quilt to be seen on my blog. Hope you have a good weekend CL.

  3. I like the whizz whizz, whirr whirr of machine piecing. But hand quilting with a glass of wine would come a close second.

  4. Great quilts, I suspect my daughter would love all the bright pink in your eldest's quilt too.

  5. You have made some lovely quilts there, m'dear, well done. I shall never make one even though I tried hand-piecing way back in the seventies. I still have that attempt but it will never be finished, or go on show...

  6. mr coffee does have a way with words!

    I have seen what you can do when you've been drinking wine and quilting, it is incredible. why do anything else?

    1. You see, this is all the encouragement I need :-)


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