Monday, August 03, 2009

Sammy's Quilt

I was working on printing photos for a layout about Sammy's quilt in his baby book and I really wanted to show the quilt here as well. My mom made this beautiful quilt for Sammy before he was born. She and I designed the pattern together the September before Sammy was born. I drew things out in power point and emailed them to her while she drew things out longhand and had my dad take pictures and email them to me. It was a time of recovering health for my mom and the prospect of the project was a little daunting, but she really wanted to make this for Sammy so we persevered. The pattern is inspired by a fish design to go with the "Happy in the Pond" nursery Sammy would be moving into. Most people don't notice the fish, but if you look at the overall design, each block has two blue fish nose to nose and two green fish nose to nose. The blue are a solid triangle for a body, while the green have a pieced four-patch inset in to the body.

When Mom visited in October, we picked out the fabrics together. We had Zack along with us so we brought a small portable DVD player and let him watch a Sesame Street while we worked with the color choices. I couldn't believe how good he was! I really wanted Batik fabrics, which are made by wax-resist dyeing techniques native to Indonesia (and other countries). Our local shop had a great selection and we moved bolts around for well over an hour just picking out all our favorites. We chose all greens and blues. The Batiks have a characteristic look that I really love and are particularly appropriate to an underwater look.

After my mom got all the main top together, we chose a flying geese (those triangles in a row) border to go with it. I'm not sure why, but we both really love that pattern. I was hesitant because it was such a lot of piecing work, but it added so much to the overall design. The blue flying geese are all made from scraps left from the original fabric choices. She embroidered Sammy' name into a narrow border at the bottom edge of the quilt top, a really special touch.

She then had it machine quilted; Batiks are heavier than traditional quilting fabrics and very difficult to quilt through and my mom's still-recovering fingers were not up to that kind of abuse. Since my mom always does hand quilting (beautiful work), she had it done by a professional (which turned into a saga, but that's a story for another day!). Didn't the final quilting turn out beautiful? I really love how it connects the pattern, muting the patchwork to enhance the underwater look.


  1. Very cool! I haven't sewn with batiks yet, but I love how this one turned out.

  2. Mom does such amazing work! I should post a pic of NJ's quilt- better yet, you should post a bit on NJ's quilt since you designed it!!!

  3. rainylakechick - Thanks! I have a little stack for myself but haven't sewn anything either. Mom says she's never using them again so I'm really thankful to have this item!

    Julie - Oh, I'd love to show that! You don't mind? Thank you!