When it gets extra cold in Houston (I know, I know: terms like "cold" are completely relative), I pull out our wedding quilt for an extra layer on our bed.
I love running my fingers over the fabric scraps that our friends and family mailed to us before our wedding (we asked for them on our wedding website and via e-mail). It includes pieces from: The Gates installation in Central Park, the set of Trading Spaces, my grandfather's Chief robe that was given to him when he worked in Africa, a t-shirt that was worn by my baby cousins and my brother twenty years ago, a tie our good friend wore his first year of teaching--just to name a few.
I love the symbolism of the weaving together of our friends and family to provide comfort and nurturing for a lifetime.
It reminds me of the Quilt Wrapping we did during our ceremony. Wrapped in the quilt, Matt and I signed our marriage into being.
It also reminds me of the many hours and days we spent making the squares together. And I loved checking the mail every day!
We had never made a quilt before, but we just decided to go for it. The quilts of Gee's Bend were a huge inspiration. They gave us permission to break free from all the stuffy rules and precision of traditional quilting.
Here's what we did:
- Decided how big to make the quilt (this was easy since we were actually making a duvet cover for a twin-sized down comforter we had at our house).
- Cut squares from muslin.
- To make each square, we started by sewing a small square to the center of the muslin. The color of the thread did not matter since it would be covered in the end.
- Next, we cut another piece that was the same length as the square in the center. We placed right side to right side and sewed across the edge (again to the muslin). Then we unfolded the fabric and ironed it flat.
- Then we cut a piece that was the length of the first piece and the second piece put together. Again, we placed right side to right side and sewed across the edge. Again we unfolded the fabric and ironed it flat.
- We continued until the entire square was full. We never used rulers to measure anything. We would just line it up and cut.
- We then sewed strips of denim to the squares to make the quilt top.
- To finish the project, we sewed a thrift store sheet to the back and added some buttons to close it at the bottom. Voila! In all, we only spent $8 (we bought the denim and muslin on sale).