Quilts are mighty special gifts, especially when they have been crafted and sewn with the love and care of a beloved grandma. They require a great amount of time, thought, and they are costly to boot. The fabric, the pattern, the backing, the binding, the quilting - it all costs something. And this quilt was worth waiting for.
Sometime after our wedding (nearly 10 years ago already!), Gramma Alice and I went for a day around Omaha, and our first stop was the one-time Sunshine Stitches. Gramma is always "needing" something or other from these fabric stores, and as soon as we walked in and saw this quilt on the back wall hanging for all to see I knew it was the one for me. Normally I am quite reserved in my praise for quilts because they are usually just a little too dated and country kitsch for my taste, but this one practically sang itself into our basket. Gramma knew, too, right away that it was the one she wanted to make us. Sold!
Health and other projects came up over the years, but finally the year came and Gramma determined to make it up. Boy, was I thrilled! She even allowed me to "meddle" :D I had the privilege of laying out the blocks, choosing the binding fabric (peach border and dark water colored leaves), the backing (simple cream muslin), and even the quilting designs.
One afternoon this past summer, we drove out to visit the great quilter Vicki Japp (firstname.lastname@example.org) in her studio and I got to know her a little better and the way she does things. It's fascinating to see another artist at work! Vicki is the best in the region, and we got to collaborate on the color of thread (silver in the dark, cream in the light) and design for each shape and motif. I searched the web for all sorts and finally culled it down to a simple feather pattern that incorporated leaves to keep it all cohesive.
the links for each design:
After Gramma got it back from Vicki, she sewed on the binding, and put on the sweet finishing touches (last photo). Gramma brought it for us to open at Christmas, and I was overwhelmed with thanks and awe that such a piece of art would adorn our bed. Because it is art. It's tactile and practical, but art nonetheless. This quilt is something I will cherish and pass down for generations and I'm so grateful to have a piece of my Gramma Alice tied up in this blanket of love.
Thank you, Gramma. You are a skilled artist, a loving grandmother, and a kindred spirit. I'm so thankful God gave you to me!
Dark, brooding gray and blue batiks mingled with warm, rusty tones.
Arranged the blocks so it would mimic an ombre effect, balanced by a bold little star in the corner. That space just felt empty without it.
By choosing a simple, solid porcelain hue, the back is as pretty as the front.
aren't those details just scrumptious?
"Made with much love, for
Heather and JD Hall
by grandma Alice Kahnk
I love you, Gramma.