Friday, 16 May 2014

scrappy string quilt

Scrappy String Quilt
This is a little string quilt that I made last year and haven't yet shared. A young couple we know were expecting their first baby last year and I really felt strongly about making them a quilt for their little one. I decided on a string quilt, as I had always wanted to make one and it also allowed the quilt to be a gift from my family to theirs. Every piece of fabric used in this baby quilt has a story that is part of my family. There is fabric that Grandma used to make skirts for the girls, fabric sent from Kate Spain (Zoe will tell you that I squealed when the package arrived and I won't deny it), fabric used for the cushions that adorn our couches, fabric that has been used to make birthday party bags, library bags, chair bags, bed quilts - lots of things that are part of our daily life and are special to us.

I know I could have wrapped up some other gorgeous baby item instead of making a quilt and it would have been just as lovingly received, but I didn't. You see, the grandmother of this baby has dementia. As a farmer's wife, and from what I know from others, she raised her five children - one of her daughters' is the mother of this baby - providently, patiently and lovingly. Home cooked meals, stories at bedtime, digging together in the vegie patch, caring for far away neighbours and lots of hugs. This is the kind of family that this young mother grew up in.

I imagine that if she were able to, the grandmother of this baby would have made a quilt in anticipation of such a precious arrival. Dementia has robbed her of the opportunity. It came suddenly and at a younger than expected age.

So, I made a quilt for this baby in honour of her grandmother.

I gathered up my chosen fabric scraps and rotary cut it into strips of various widths. I think the narrowest was 1.5" and the widest 3.5".

There are a few ways of making string blocks floating around the blogosphere and pinterest. I chose to use a foundation fabric, as I had a whole lot of white poly cotton from my mum's sewing cupboard that I thought would be great for this very thing. I cut it into 5" squares and started sewing my fabric strips to it. I wouldn't use poly cotton again. I found that it stretched and was a bit annoying. Cotton or nothing for me next time!

Once all the 5" white squares were covered and trimmed back to 5" I sewed them together.

As this quilt will probably be used as a blanket as well as floor mat, I backed it in flannel for softness. I used varying strips of purple, blue, green and red flannel that were in my stash. The binding is scrappy - one of my favourite parts of this quilt!

                                                                           I loved making this little quilt.
                                                       As I reflect on my many blessings I am truly grateful for every day.

Linking up to the Blogger's Quilt Festival hosted by Amy's Creative Side. Have a look at the amazing quilts and the stories behind them.


  1. its lovely Jeneta,well done.xx

  2. Such a lovely post....such a lovely quilt, Jeneta, with a lovely, lovely story. How very special that you stitched this beauty using fabric that has a loving story attached to each piece. One never knows what tomorrow will bring......we must grab each day with open arms and be thankful for each blessing.

  3. Jeneta, that is one happy quilt you've made! I love it and love knowing that it already has a history -- sewn together with all those beautiful memories and stories. It humbles me to be a small scrap in the string quilt of your life! Thank you for sharing your talents. xo

  4. Awwww, what a sad but wonderful story. You are the kindest and most generous person I know and I'm so lucky to have you as a friend. This young family was very lucky as well. What a gorgeous quilt - I'm sure you've shown it to me in various stages of production before, but what a wonderful end product. I'm inspired to make a scrappy string quilt sometime in the future as well. :-)

  5. This is such a beautiful and special quilt. The story is so moving, I'm happy you're there to make this beautiful gift.

  6. What a sweet story! I feel the same about poly-cotton- it kind of melts and shrinks when you iron it. Beautiful job!

  7. Wonderful,....may God bless you for your thoughtfulness in this gift.

  8. Love this story. You are such a giving gal. We are all time poor and your quilt is such a treasure.
    It is more beautiful than a "Prize Quilt" because of the love.

  9. I love this quilt...and the story that goes with it. What a very special thing to do for what sounds like a very special family. They're blessed to have you as a friend.

  10. A lovely story and a cosy quilt! Well done.

  11. Very cute and filled with meaning!

  12. Hi! Really beautiful quilt! Lovely pattern and so happy colours! Teje


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