Wednesday, November 23, 2011

More birthday gifts!

Sometimes a gift received from a loved one is what you need to make your birthday special. Even if it's not exactly what you've been wanting, it's the thought that counts. Other times being allowed to "gift" to yourself items you've had on your wish list is even better!  For me that item was fabric for my baby quilt. I've been planning this quilt for a few weeks now. And the time is about right to get started. All I needed was the fabric. 

Making a baby quilt is a little tradition that didn't start until I was pregnant with my fourth daughter, (O). In fact, it was my oldest daughter's Brownie troop that started it for me. As a group project they designed and made a friendship quilt for us. It was such a special gift, from the heart and homemade.

When I was pregnant with my fifth daughter we were homeschooling by that time and part of a homeschool group. My daughter (C) was in a Kindergarten Girls Group. Each month a different mother took a turn leading the group and doing a craft or activity. My month was up and I was racking my brain for ideas to do. Why not teach the class about quilting and design a friendship quilt for our newest expected baby? That's just what I did. I had never made a quilt before, so it was a learning process for me as well. Each girl got to design a nine square patch. I had pre-cut squares of fabric and a drew a "template" on a large sheet of paper. The girls each arranged their squares to their liking and pinned them to the paper. I then took the patches home, sewed them together exactly as the girls had laid them out, and embroidered their names on them.

This time around I do not have any groups to assit me in putting my quilt together. It will be entirely Mama-made.  Here are the quilt plans I have for baby #6. We don't know whether this little bundle of joy will be a girl or boy, so I wanted to keep the colors neutral. And I wanted to go outside the box from the usual pastel baby schemes. My color scheme was inspired by the colors of India and from nature. I am a Lay Missionary of Charity, and I have a monk friend who visited Calcutta. He shared his photo album with me. The beautiful colors awed me: the browns, with pops of yellow, oranges, reds. . . my greens and blues come from nature.

I spent over an hour in JoAnn Fabrics!  No kids, just me and my sketch, having a good time exploring the isles of fabric. That was a treat in itself. It was tough to narrow down my selections, there were so many wonderful colors and patterns. But money put a limit on how many I was allowed to come home with :) Here is what I  finally chose:

Let the quilting begin!