Sunday, 9 October 2011

Comfort and joy

I find that there is so much joy to be derived from making things for babies - as I sit on my sofa in my sewing and knitting corner I can be transported into a world of reverie, not only imagining into existence something cosy for the little newcomer but also re-imagining the past of my own big babies who have so recently deserted me.

An appley quilt

Sitting stitching, I find continuity in a world of change, and in the room where once I sat with my arms and hands full of baby and toddler and yearned for some time and space to think, I now sit in the quiet and stitch some comfort to enwrap another little soul marching into the future.


Today I finished this baby quilt and together with the satisfaction of completion, another thing ticked off the list, there was also something more. I had had a few uncertainties during the quilt's creation; I wasn't quite sure if it was going to work; I very nearly started unpicking, and even considered making something quite different entirely.


But as I looked at the quilt I suddenly realized that yes, this had worked: I had made a present that was full of joy as well as warmth. What I had in my head had come out in the stitches.


'It's a good job that the baby turned out to be a girl', said Princess Bunchy, 'it wouldn't have been quite right for a boy.'


Serendipity, perhaps, but I did try to make the mix of red and blue, and the mix of motifs ungendered. I wanted a quilt with plenty to look at, a quilt full of the potential for story with animals and plants and matryoshkas stumping through the magic woods.

Matryoshkas stumping through the woods

The squares are 5in finished size (5.5in cut) to accommodate a complete motif from the red and blue fabrics with the matryoshkas and dala horses in lacy squares - these were fussy cut, which was more time consuming, but the only way to deal with this sort of fabric, I think. (The fabrics all came from Fabric Rehab, but so long ago that I can't remember their names - apart from the apples I think they are Japanese ones.)

I did lay out all the squares before joining them because I have come to the conclusion that I am congenitally incapable of random piecing. Such is my love of order and almost symmetry that I can't leave such things to chance.


As with my last baby quilt, I did the binding by turning the backing to the front, and hand quilted in the ditch along the seam lines.


I have come to the conclusion that I really enjoy sitting and hand sewing like this - once again it is something that can be done sitting on the sofa in the evening whilst chatting, and I do like my sofa time. Machining for me is a daylight task, and if I started talking too much I would probably stitch myself to the quilt as an extra bonus.

The sofa is calling me, calling me . . .

Now I can wrap up my little bundle of comfort for the new little bundle of joy with a happy heart at the thought of sending my stitches out into the world - it has been a good weekend.

And next week I am going to tell tales of the most wonderful muffins and the vagaries of natural pest control - I am sure that you are beside yourself with excitement.

38 comments:

Simply H said...

What a lovely quilt Pomona - gorgeous fabrics and beautifully made. I am sure the intended baby will enjoy many a snuggly cuddle in their new quilt x

Jackie said...

It's a beautiful quilt and I'm sure it will be greatly treasured! I loved hearing of your thoughts while sitting and quilting.

Sarah - Red Gingham said...

Oh we are excited! Love your baby quilt very much. Such a beautiful gift for a new baby and so sweet that you filled it with memories of your little people. Enjoy your relax now on your welcoming sofa.

{Leila}Where the Orchids Grow said...

What a lovely baby quilt you made! I really like hand stitching on baby quilts, to me it adds to the heirloom feel of it all. Excellent job!

Lyn said...

What a beautiful quilt I am sure it will be treasured for many years.
xxx

Floss said...

What a fantastic quilt, Pomona. I know what you mean about enjoying the memories whilst making it. I haven't actually made a baby quilt since our own were little. The one we treasure was made by Ben's mum. She also lent us 'the' cot - every baby in the family has had it, in turn. We actually managed to space out the cousins so that it worked!

Good grief- the word verification is:

dedlysin

Serious stuff!

Second Chance Tan said...

wow - this is simply beautiful. I especially love the apples, they seem to fit really well with the other patterns.

Amg-Arts said...

Beautiful quilts!!

http://thislittlecottageofours.blogspot.com/

Amy said...

Your quilt is beautiful. I just love your fabric selections. And hand quilted, well, that just shows extra love I think!

taylorsoutback said...

What a happy quilt for a happy occasion...I like how you compared making it to having your hands busy with earlier babies...so many special reasons to make quilts!!!

millefeuilles said...

Pomona, the baby quilt is beautiful. Yes, that plague of a question - 'is this going to work?' does come along in the middle of a project but often when one stands back the WHOLE is so very satisfactory.

And thank you for remembering how when looking after toddlers one hankers after time to think: I am right in the middle of that heady, hair pulling time and I shall remind myself to savour more still these precious toddler years.

andrea creates said...

what a great quilt!i love all of the prints you've chosen :)
have a lovely weekend...

Belinda @ Wild Acre said...

I think I would burst into tears if I received that amazing quilt, it is perfect, cosy and joyful, lucky wee one who snuggles in it!

silverpebble said...

I am! Tell me of the muffins.

That baby quilt is divine.

Carol said...

Really lovely quilt, one which I am sure will be treasured for many years.
Carol xx

VintageVicki said...

Lucky baby - its gorgeous :)

Mousy Brown said...

Beautiful! A triumph Pomona :D

Hen said...

It's lovely, what a great gift.
Hen x

Little Blue Mouse said...

What a beautiful quilt, such lovely fabrics.

greenrabbitdesigns said...

It is so beautiful and I'm sure it will be treasured always.
Years pass by so quickly, don't they!
Vivienne x

**Anne** said...

Such a beautiful quilt for a baby, one that will long be enjoyed I'm sure. The fabrics used are so lovely.
Anne xx

Faith Hope Cherrytea said...

how deliteful! and what a happy baby that will be =)

Shocking Hocking said...

it's a lovely quilt - and i'm sure it'll be well loved. cheers

Frances said...

Oh did you say pest control? I cannot wait!

Meanwhile, let me tell you how much I like that baby quilt. It has just a surprising combination of patterns and scale, and just works perfectely all together. Bravo!

I also love doing a bit of handwork in the evening...when I am not too tired to keep up with the plot of the project. Some projects are definitely daylight designations.

Best wishes!

Mrs. Micawber said...

Isn't it wonderful when what is in your head comes out in your stitches?

What a sweet quilt, and so cheerful. I can see it years from now, frayed with love. I appreciate your desire to choose the block layout; I too lack the random gene.

Hand stitching is so satisfying.

dragonfly said...

I need all the pest control tips you can offer. I wait with bated breath. I'm talking Ratty here...

Menopausalmusing said...

That is the most beautiful of handcrafted gifts......... waiting to read your pest control tips......

driftwood said...

oh it's truly gorgeous and stitched with love xxx

Lisa said...

What a beautiful gift you've made. And how comfy does your sofa look?!
Lisa x

Karen L R said...

such a lucky baby! i love the fabrics, and appreciate the time that went into the fussy cutting...but it was worth it!

Nicky said...

Lovely quilt ! I am sure it will be appreciated!

Thanks for the Organic Places to Stay book - it arrived safely! Will now need to find an excuse to go away for the weekend!

Helen Philipps said...

Your quilt is really beautiful, Pomona. I love the unusual fabrics and the fussy cutting is perfect to make the little squares work so well. It's a charming design for a baby too. I love to hand sew quietly too, such a peaceful thoughtful way to create something with a timelessness to it.
Enjoy your week.
Helen x

Lynne (Lily's Quilts) said...

It really is a very wonderful and beautiful quilt and I love that you plan your random just like I do!

Katy Cameron said...

Oooh, lovely quilt, love all the reds in it

GardenofDaisies said...

The quilt is gorgeous!!! Love the little swedish Dala horses and apples! I think any baby would love the bright colors of that quilt.. both boys and girls.

Rowan said...

That's such a lovely quilt, making things for small people is something I enjoy too although knitting is my craft rather than quilting.

e.giraffe said...

Really love your quilt - fantastic colours.

Barbara said...

A great present and stitched with so much love I am sure.

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