Category Archives: Tailor quilt

Hand Stitched to the finish


The Tailor Quilt 1 is finished, I am happy!  Its been a long road, and finishing is so satisfying.  I look back and say “what was so hard about it?”  I’m learning….. take one step at a time….make a start with a general idea, do something, then look, do someting else…keep going until satisfied.     I’ve stitched myself onto a new path to follow that involves reverse applique, hand stitching, (literally, sort of, no blood involved), and meaning.  I will immediately start on Tailor Quilt 2. 

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Tailor quilt coming along


Now that I have allowed myself to keep going on it.


I did some “unstitching” on a very large section that was hand quilted.

This was necessary as the whole thing was starting to bubble up as a result of my stitching. 


I’ve also embroidered words, and some images to help tell the story……

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Then, that voice popped up again, “what are you doing, this is not going well, what were you thinking?”.

So there it hung on the wall…I had planned to rip it apart, go back to square one. 

But then I listened to my own inner grumblings and to some good experienced friends and artists (thanks baguettes), and realized that I just needed to keep going.

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I’ll reserve judgment until I am complete.  And if it doesn’t measure up…..


I’ll try again and improve the next one. 


I hate it when someone else judges what I am doing before completing it,

you’ve been there……

the soup that is not seasoned yet….

the patch of dirt with nothing planted in it yet….


So why do this to myself.


My vow….

Do not require perfection.

Finish, then just move on, do it better next time.……




Its all about the journey.


There is no finish line.


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Hand stitches


Back working on tailor’s quilt.  Just to refresh  your memory, I received a wool quilt from Jeff’s family.  His great grandfather was a tailor, and his greatgrandmother made this quilt from the wool suiting samples, over 100 years ago.   I decided to give it a new life by cutting it apart and making something new as it has been used, mended and worn out over the years.  While cutting it apart, I discovered a greasy handprint in a corner  What could have happened?  Was it used as a drop cloth?  Was someone hurriedly moving it to keep it from being stepped on, runover, or saving it from a spark?  This cloth has definitely seen many hands, and I have a record of one of them. 


Tailor’s quilt progress


Earlier this summer I introduced you to the wool Tailor’s quilt.  After procrastinating for all these months, I took a deep breath and cut into the quilt.  I cut about a 1/6th section out of it at a corner, that makes it a workable size of 24″ x30″.  Then cut the front and back apart giving me two pieces of patchwork. 

  I’ve chosen the upper one to work on.  Predominently golds, greens and a few purples thrown in.  The patchwork was interesting from the back, the seams were so raveled but the fabric was fresher looking in color and texture.  I was tempted to turn things upside down and make the backside the front. 

But what changed my mind was this stain:

When I looked more closely at it, and then placed my hand over it, its identity was known….a long fingered hand reaching reaching out from the past.  Hmmmm, must somehow make a connection.

Tailor’s quilt


My dear mominlaw, Elaine, gave me a piece of family history.  Her grandfather was a tailor.  He made men’s suits.  Being a frugal family, nothing could go to waste…including the woolen salesman’s samples of fabrics.  So, the tailor’s wife, Elaine’s grandmother, made a quilt of these samples.  Over the years, its been used, mended, darned and patched.  I love this about this quilt.  But with all the patching and wear, I don’t think anyone will treasure it for itself, and display it, or actually use it.  So I’ve made a decision to cut it up and use the patchworked fabric for the background of a quilt(s) that I will gift to family members.  Really don’t know where this project will go, but I want to get it started.  This is definitely a long term project, and one without any patterns or planned final outcomes.  Today, I gently washed  about 100 years of soil out of the quilt:

And hung it to dry:

Now I must make decisions on cutting it apart….this is difficult and scary, and very final.