Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Perfectly Imperfect Quilt

One of the bloggers that I follow, over at Inditutes, recently wrote a post about a family quilt that needed mending. It was a beautiful post that made me think of the "quilt" that I started making for Emma a few years ago. 

Now, I put quilt in quotes because, well, when I think of quilts, I think beautiful works of art with tiny squares in intricate patterns, perfectly stitched. My quilt is more haphazard, and well, less than perfect. 

Emma's quilt is made up of bits of our lives. 

As I look at this picture, I realize that there are actually 3 blankets on this bed that I made - makes me happy to provide for my family this way :)

When Emma was 14 months old, she got Rotavirus, which hit in the middle of a flight from Iowa to AZ (Emma, Icky and I had just spent a few months in Iowa with my in-laws while Jared was deployed and were headed home). We landed in Phoenix, where we were suppose to spend a few days with my mom, who lives in Phoenix, and my 2 sisters and nephews, who had flown in to visit. Emma and I ended up spending 3 days in the hospital. This was her gown. A scary time, but it reminds me how strong she was and still is.

 This is Emma's art. When we first started playing with freezer paper stenciling, Emma drew this. The green star above it came from a shirt and says "My Aunt Loves Me" in little gems. She received it from her Auntie Sara, but it applies for all 3 of her Aunts :)

This is the shirt that Emma wore in the hospital when she was born. I held on too it for years knowing I wanted to do something special with it. For a while it was a doll/ stuffy shirt, but I like it on the quilt better.

A lot of the items on here have no particular story, just that when we purge Emma's closet, she gets the option of donating the item or getting it on her quilt. She has a love for all things equine.

This little butterfly was once part of a very cute shirt. The polka dot fabric behind it came from a horse shirt that she loved.

This piece use to be a t-shirt. Emma's very first friends were two boys named Michael and Gavin. We met them (and their moms Judy and Erin) through the breastfeeding support group offered by the hospital where Emma was born. We spent a great deal of time with Judy, Michael, Erin, and Gavin. This shirt was from Gavin's second birthday.

Just a much loved shirt.

This was a fun shirt, worn at a stage when she was getting into everything. We have pictures of her wearing this shirt on the day we bought Jared's Jeep and she got the nickname Cool Breeze. A fun day and cool pictures.

This plaid square is from a shirt of Boppa's. I had made a dress for her out of one of Boppa's shirts (that she only wore once or twice). It was a fun dress, and it is fun to have a piece of Boppa on here as well.

This is a needle felted horse made by Emma.

The back of the quilt is just plain yellow. The fabric itself is in good shape, but my less than stellar sewing has left it all puckered. I think, with all the stitches and such, that it looks a little like the farmland here in Iowa. 

The middle layer of the quilt is a ratty, thread bare blanket that is full of holes. I am not even sure how it managed to survive long enough to make it into Emma's quilt. Once upon a time it had a beautiful pink satin binding, special powers of keeping away the scaries, and the ability to keep a person warm or cool, depending on what was needed. I have had this blanket since I was born, and I have loved it well. I hope that, despite the holes and such, that it will continue to keep away the scaries, provide warmth, and fill Emma with the knowledge that she is loved.

I was showing this quilt to a friend yesterday and I said to her, "It really isn't perfect, but-" when Emma interrupted me to emphatically state, "It is perfect!"

Thanks, Emma. I love you too :)