Friday, December 11, 2015

Marcy's Quintet, Kaleidoscope, and Jesus Loves Me Quilts

In mid-November, I finished three baby doll quilts for Operation Christmas Child. I get so much pleasure out of making these, imagining the little girls who will receive them and pretend to be mommies. 

This first one of five butterflies I have named Marcy's Quintet.  My husband is one of five kids (all boys) and their mother's name was Marcella. People close to her called her Marcy.

One night I just wanted to sew mindlessly for the thrill of the humming machine. No pattern, I started sewing brightly colored strips together. I used the popsicle fabric colors as a color palette. Once I finished making five random sets, it was time to make a template. Sure, I could've used the internet to download an image, but I can draw--or so I thought. I wasn't getting the look I wanted. So what do I do when I'm stuck? I call one of my resident artists.
 My son free-handed a butterfly template for me. He's so funny; it took him five seconds to draw one and then he tossed the pencil down and said, "Bam! Done!" 

 I machine appliqued the butterflies onto a blue-sky fabric background. I used echoing for the quilting with a few random hearts in the blank areas. I didn't want the quilting too dense because that will stiffen the quilt. Puffy and fluffy is how I like them. 

The second one, a bit smaller, is simply called "Jesus Loves Me."  Though the smallest, 
it gave me the most problems. I don't remember all of them, but the plaid fabric kept wanting to stretch, and I couldn't find a backing I loved. Yes, I know it's "just a doll quilt" and shouldn't matter, but it does. Every design decision is important to me. 

While trying to decide, I happened to see a contest on a quilting forum. 
The lady was giving away fabric bundles from her stash,  under one condition: that you really wanted or needed the fabric and would pay it forward. If your name was picked, it was yours. I took one look at the butterfly fabric with all the same colors as the front of the Jesus Love Me quilt, and entered my name. Winning was such a thrill! To have 
an immediate place to "pay it forward" felt like  a God thing. 

To quilt it, I did some meandering and also FMQ'ed (free motion quilted) some 
daisies . Far from perfect, but that's the point of these little quilts. They are my 
practice fields.

This string quilt was a lot of fun to make. But when it was finished, I had a hard time thinking of a name. Normally that's the easy part. So I posted it on Facebook and immediately had
several people say "Kaleidoscope." So, that's what it is.  I  did more meandering for this one .

                         I used a longish strip and made a label which I sewed into the binding.
                                         John 3:16 is the reference I always include on my labels.

 Ultimately the doll quilts went into shoeboxes as gifts through Operation Christmas Child. I bought Hispanic baby dolls from Discount School Supply.

Since I used the "track it" option with Samaritan's Purse, I'll be able to see where these three boxes end up. I can hardly wait.


Susan Kane said...

Oh, Zoanna! Those are darling!

Plaid is crazy to sew on! At least for me.

Those boxes for girls will be wonderful!

Zoanna said...

Thanks, Susan. Plaid is certainly a challenge for pattern matching, but I wasn't trying to match anything here. It's just that the fabric was old and didn't want to stay square. I almost ditched the whole thing, but I loved the colors and wasn't going to let the fabric win! Ha.

Ruth in California said...

Wow, what little girl wouldn't want to receive this on Christmas? The quilts are darling and whole presentation is so fun.

Lea @ CiCis Corner said...

Those quilts are going to make some little girls mighty happy. They are so, so pretty. You are experiencing the real joy of Christmas.