Normally, I have work acquantainces, a professional relationship that once we go our seperate ways, we aren't likely to chat with each other again. Kate is more than that. She has become a work friend and confidant. Kate has helped me through personal issues on the job, has been a good ear when I'm babbling on about family and has been a wonderful cheerleader to my quilting (and fitness) efforts.
Kate is, in short, a wonderful person and I've long wanted to tell her how much she is appreciated. I hope I've done that by returning the favor of being a friend, as much as she's wanted me to be, but I also wanted her to have a tangible reminder and thus, the idea of creating a quilt for her was born.
For many months, I pondered what to make her. I thought it would be great to surprise her but I could never quite settle on colors or design. Instead, I asked her. I told her I wanted to make her a quilt and she let me know her color and style preferences. Then it was on!
One night, after a guild meeting, several guild members and I set about to find the perfect fabrics to compliment the pattern I chose, "Plaid Parade" by Jaybird Quilts. Cutting and piecing went together fairly quickly.
Then came the quilting. What to do, what to do? I initially thought to quilt in all the negative space but thankfully, common sense stepped in and reminded me I'd lose the specific kind of cuddly feel I wanted out of the minkee if I did that. Instead, I quilted diamond ropes in the white sashing of the blocks and just an orange peel type of curve in the colored squares.
Finally, I tried a new technique to label it. I took a leftover piece of binding and machine stitched "Handmade by" on one side and my name on the other. Then I sewed it into the binding. I like this method a lot. Simple and inexpensive.
So, here is Kate's Plaids. I hope she enjoys it and I truly hope she knows, how much she is appreciated every day, even when we haven't chatted in a while.
And Kate, if you are reading this. Thank you for being you.