Monday 9 January 2012

Monday Memories 7

I am finding this series quite a good exercise in recalling events and in general what was going on in my life, other than quilting.
It would seem that I was a busy quilter from 2000 thro' 2002 and I was thinking about that this morning.
In January of 2000 I gave up my job with our local council as my family were scheduled to move to Cyprus for a year or so. My husband had been working overseas on short term contracts and this one seemed like it would suit all of us. Favourite daughter would leave school in May and take a year out with us. Favourite son was going to go to an International school and do the Baccalaureate instead of Highers.........lots to do and organise. How could I be quilting too?
At the11th hour, the plan fell thro'.......Jenny got a place at Uni and Stu went back to school.
Sometimes life does that - no regrets.

In 2001 Allan & I had our first trip to the US, and Stu came along too. Jenny went off elsewhere with teenage friends (eek!)
How I remember the excitement of going to the Land of the Quilt - I would experience real quilt shops, and I did. Our trip took us from Washington down thro' Virginia and back up. I visited a teeny wee shop in a place called Occoquan, saw quilts in Williamsburg, visited the Harrisonburg Quilt museum, went to a Mennonite quilt store and of course, discovered the delights of Walmart. (We did other stuff too, like see a baby black bear, and have a car crash!)
I bought an Americana "cheater" panel called Sweet Land of Liberty, by Sandy Gervais, and this was to be the inspiration for this week's Monday Memory.
I once heard, or read, that we(quilters) all have one good quilt in us - this is mine. Look closely and you'll see points chopped off and skinny filler strips to bring a block to size.........don't care, it's my favourite.
The pattern for this quilt was published in British P & Q in the January of 2002 - it was a monthly thing, a few blocks at a time, and I decided it would be a good way to learn different techniques. I didn't like using templates but some of those blocks had to be done that way. Oh boy, it was a challenge. I collected Americana fabrics, mainly online from the US and I followed what I think was the best piece of advice given in the magazine, and that was to keep darker value fabrics for star points.By doing just that I think it makes those stars really stand out.
The quilt was QAYG using two different width of strips to join each block - althought this meant the actual quilting was really straightforward, I found the joining so laborious and haven't given this method another thought, until just recently........
 The quilt was designed by Gwenfai Rees Griffiths and the eagle-eyed among you will spot that it became my inspiration for my Mystery Quilt.
So, what did I do with the cheater panel? I cut it up and used it on the back
I named my quilt "Sweet Land of Liberty" (original, huh?) and as well as being a reminder of our American holiday, it also serves as a reminder of the unforgettable events of September 2001.
In March 2004, my quilt, along with lots of other "Houston Stars" was feaured in the P & Q Magazine.
So is it all downhill from here?? Check back next week and see.........
Breaking news - The Peeps quilt is ready for binding, and the Pips blocks are all made, but you will have to wait a wee while longer to see those.


  1. Great story about how your quilt came about. It must be so cool to build up a quilt collection over the years that really commemorate what was going on in your life and the fabric choices that influenced you at the time. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Great tale, love the aside about a car crash!!
    Super quilt; can't wait to see the Peeps and Pips x

  3. Aww, love that story, well, except the crash! Looking forward to the Peeps and Pips!

  4. Isn`t it funny how we love the quilt full of imperfections? Great story Sheila - hope you are well.

  5. Wow, I love that quilt! And yes, i see some of the Mystery Quilt blocks in there and some we did not get to do. I still think you have another mystery quilt in you Sheila, how about in the fall? Thanks for the story!

  6. What a lovely story and a quilt to treasure.I wish I'd made the mystery quilt.

  7. Love your American quilt S! Reminds me a bit of the civil war one I'm working on. Lots of lovely blocks there, and memories too. Jxo

  8. Love the quilt but laughed at the 'one good quilt' bit. You've got so many good quilts in you it is amazing. And I love how you chopped up the panel and used it in the back.

  9. I love this quilt, and loved it when it's popped up in previous blog posts too. That's a great story to go with it. I'm sure you have many many more gorgeous quilts in you.

  10. love your quilt. coincidentally my first trip to america was also 2001 (we stood on the top of the twin towers about 3 weeks prior). And it was on that trip where I first discovered the joys of quilting!

  11. Love the quilt and the story behind it!

  12. Am sure your best quilt is ahead of you yet! But that is one great quilt without a doubt!

  13. Love your quilt and the story surrounding it! I love the colour combination, i think reds, navy and white are one of my all time favourite combos.

    P.S. Did you survive the crazy weather up here???



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