I decided that yesterday was THE DAY to resurrect a project and push it to completion. You see, some tops --- I’m fine with them being “just tops” for a long time. A completed top has reached a stage where it is fine to rest a while. But then comes the time where the push to be a “REAL QUILT” niggles and naggles at me and I have to do it.
If you’ve followed me since the beginning you’ll remember how this quilt came to be. My friend Lucy lives in Haarlem, the Netherlands --- and we started doing these blocks together as a joint project, across the seas. We decided that we’d kit these up, and any time we cut a basket, we’d cut two identical ones--"One for you, one for me" and send them to each other – just the pieces --- so we could do our own sewing. It was SO FUN to have little envelopes of 10 baskets or so at a time arrive in the mail! This project had no deadline, and it was a good thing.
I think we started them before I went back to Massage Therapy school, but they quickly became my lunch time project. I’d applique the handles during my lunch at school, much to the interest of fellow students --- of course they already looked at me like I was the grannie of the group, I was 42 when school started – most of them were around 20! Boy, were those fun times. Can that really be that long ago already? I guess it can!
By the end of the school week I'd have a bunch of basket handles ready to go, and I'd assemble the blocks as Leaders & Enders in between other projects until I had all 180 baskets I needed to complete the quilt. When Lucy made her first visit to the US in 2004 or was it 2005? We spent part of our time sewing our baskets together at my house in between bouts of fabric shopping. Great memories!
In searching back-posts for more on this quilt ---I came across THIS POST stating where you can find a 4.5” block. It’s a place to start for you. I have no immediate plans to draft this up as a free blog pattern. There are many tiny basket patterns already out there, or you could use EQ to size any basket down to a size you want.
THIS POST was when I finally got the yucky original VERY BROWN border off, and put the wild piano key border in there. Oh, there is a picture of Oscar in that post. I miss him so much.
December 11, 2005!! YIKES!! That’s when I wrote this post –the original top was done but I hated the borders! Good call to remove those.
So let’s get this top turned into a quilt! And this is where we throw in something fun:
Sandi D gifted me with several yardage-long-lengths of fabrics that she had been given when I was in San Diego in January.
Was she just sharing the love, or was she finding an easy way to get rid of it? LOL!! See these Liberty Ladies?! Do you remember this fabric? It was actually a “Quilt For The Cure” ---Beehives are a sign of industry, wheat sheaves are a sign of prosperity. The cornucopia is a sign of abundance. Ladies with togas and spikey crowns and sheilds? Well….I’m not sure about those…… let’s look closer!
Uhoh! What’s that I see on her ANCHOR?! ((ANCHOR? What is the anchor supposed to symbolize?!))
HOLY MOLY! It’s another MILLENIUM FABRIC!! LOL!! Anno Domini MM = The Year 2000!
Uh. Yep. Selvage proves it!
There wasn’t enough yardage to use it for the WHOLE back, but there was enough to use it as a panel down the back center. I mean, seriously? Where else would I use this stuff?? It would be a hard one to match the print on too, if I were to sew two panels of it together…..do I really want to match seams on pointy-crown-wearing-ladies?! I’ve got some left, I can do the hanging sleeve in that too. As I think about it....Lady Liberty symbolizes so much of my life now that I've reached the magic age of 50! It's a good fit, don't you think?
The baskets are SMALL. And that made choosing a quilting pattern difficult. I originally thought I’d hand quilt this, but come on, who am I kidding? I chose a little tear drop pattern called Holly’s Hearts by Urban Elementz. Of course, I was so careful to make sure that the ladies heads were pointing the same direction on the BACK of the quilt as the basket handles were facing on the FRONT of the quilt, and forgot that the panto was going to stitch with the top of the pattern at the other end of the machine…Whooops! So now the hearts are upside down. Do I care? Not really. What is it they say? Done is better than perfect!!? I was SO not going to unstitch that quilting!
Two special blocks--- The first light pink one--that is the fabric that I made a dress from for DH’s and my 1st date in 1981. There are very few scraps of that left --- but I mean it when I say that when I got married my scraps came with me! The second pink basket – that’s the one that Lucy signed for me. She has one I signed for her in her quilt-to-be too.
The quilt came off the machine last night. Today’s job? Trimming it up, and choosing a binding. With baskets in this much variety, there are so many different ways that I can go. I’ve picked out a few choices here:
I do know that I do not want more BROWN in this. I’m all browned out! There are quite a few purple baskets in the center, as there are blue, red and green. But the one I’m leaning the most toward is the purple-y burgundy at the far right. It’s barely got a design on it – it’s black vines on burgundy. It’s warm, it’s deep, and it isn’t busy against the busy piano key border. And best of all? It’s NOT brown! :cD What do you think?
I’m headed back to the crazy-chiro office this afternoon! This means I get to put in more guesses to win that huge vase full of hersheys kisses and the candle ;c) Can’t wait! :cD