Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Blanketed in love


I really don't make as many things for Dylan as I do for Tilly. I find it harder to make clothes for a 9 year old boy, I can't really sew cool t-shirts and hoodies and the trousers he likes to wear have dozens of pockets. Dresses are mostly simple to sew and the fabric choices are so much fun.


Yes, my poor boy misses out somewhat on the sewing front. However, he does possess the highest number of knitted socks in the household and he certainly is a pleasure to knit socks for. That boy really appreciates his handknitted socks, I've discovered him sweating in a pair during the height of summer and he often wears them to bed. He wouldn't dream of a sleep over or Cub camp without his knitted socks. Dylan says that he knows handmade things are special because they are made with love. I know, he really says that. He is such a gorgeous boy, so kind and considerate, thoughtful and loving. When he says things like that my heart feels like it will burst, so full of love that it gives me that sort of ache that comes from loving so much.


So I guess the fact that it has taken me such a very long time to make him this quilt makes me a pretty shocking kind of mother! I've lost count of the number of times this quilt has been put aside in favour of a liberty print or some pink corduroy. What a fickle sewer I am. I sort of alw
ays knew how I wanted his quilt to be but as usual I procrastinated like crazy. The fabrics were gathered but I couldn't bring myself to commit to cutting. Finally the cutting was don and the piecing of the blocks was quick enough. Dylan enjoyed working with me on putting together the layout, he gave it a lot of thought, he carefully moved pieces, stood back to examine and then moved the blocks again. It was fun to work together, I was eager to see him wrapped in this quilt. I quickly sewed the blocks together and then I could not choose a backing so again the momentum waned and it went back in the basket and sat there for weeks. Months in fact.



Eventually I spotted a suitable backing and enthusiasm gathered once more. The backing attached and it was time to begin the hand quilting. That was a job of fits and starts, Dylan watched patiently but anxiously, I think he was worried that I would put it do
wn again. Finally it was quilted and there was just the need for binding. This time I forced myself not to procrastinate, not to be distracted. I chose quickly and finally the quilt was done. I was glad to be finished with it, glad to no longer feel guilty about it and so, so cross with myself for not finishing it sooner because truly, the gratitude of my gorgeous boy is just unbeatable. He loves this quilt, every night he tells me how warm it keeps him, because of course it is made with love and that is a very warming thing.

I need to make more things for my beautiful boy because to see how happy it makes him just fills me up with that incredible feeling, the one that hurts a little, the feeling that reminds you how precious and fragile our lives are, you know that feeling don't you? The one that keeps us all going, the one that makes us want to care for our loved ones, either with a kiss or a love note, baking a cake, beans on toast, a handmade gift. It doesn't matter how small or how big the gesture but just make sure they know you love them.


I used a log cabin block and a variety of fabrics gathered over time including some of The Technical Advisor's shirts (old shirts I hasten to add, or rather they are now!). I continue to be hugely inspired by the beautiful examples in Asa Wettre's book, Old Swedish Quilts I'm afraid I cannot find a better link than that, it seems rather expensive, I think I may have found my copy on Ebay.

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