Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Inside the Quilter's Studio #1: Linda's Single Girl for Her Married Girl

Today's post comes to us from Linda, who blogs at I Finally Have Time. This is the story of a quilt to commemorate her daughter's wedding.
"First look"
First Look
My daughter got married to a most wonderful man on October 15, 2011. As many modern couples do these days, they had pictures taken before the ceremony and so the first time he saw her in her wedding gown, they were outside instead of in the church. This wedding was on a beautiful fall day. The ceremony was in the afternoon.  The reception hall was decorated (by friends and family) with fall flowers and candles. We made napkins by serging the edges of fabric to add some other fun fall color to the tables.


The reception hall was a park building that had large glass windows and a stone fireplace. It felt magical, as though we were outside. When the party was over, we collected all the fabric napkins with the idea that I would make the happy couple a quilt out of them. (Yes, I washed them first!) Here they are:
All 150 of them!
All 150 of them!
 I've had these for a year and a half now and have been trying to decide what the perfect quilt pattern would be for this couple using these colors. I've made several other items out of them - notebook covers and zippered pouches for family or friends who helped with the wedding.
Notebook for my mother-in-law.
Notebook for my mother-in-law.
My daughter has made her own beautiful fall colored quilt out of other fabrics since she got married.
Isn't it pretty?
 I've decided to make a "snuggle on the couch together" quilt. The pattern I have picked is the Single Girl Quilt by Denyse Schmidt. I would call it a modern version of the traditional wedding ring quilt. 

 I assume that it is called "Single Girl" because the rings do not interconnect. However, as I look at the Single Girl Quilts that others have made and posted on Flickr or Pinterest, I can see that plenty of people make them up as wedding quilts. The quilting can add that interlocking component. 
Blocks laid out on my rug. Middle two blocks not done yet.
Blocks laid out on my rug.
The center two blocks are the opposite colors of the outside blocks. I love the thought of this. The middle blocks symbolize Lindsey's and Brian's wedding rings and they will be surrounded by circles that symbolize their families and their friends. Circles surrounded by circles. 

It seemed to take me forever to make those center two blocks. I strip pieced the fabrics and then laid them all out in order to make sure that I cut them right to get the alternating striped pattern that I wanted.

I was very careful to pick up each one and orient it the right way when I cut it so that it would form this pattern when I sewed it together. I did this meticulously for all 8 blocks and then I took them to the ironing board to press them, and guess what?

I felt so stupid! How did I not realize that I could have just simply laid them all out in the same direction and I would get the same pattern?
It was a breeze to sew the 12 large circle blocks together once these middle two were together. I’m really happy with the result. Here is how it looks laid out on my queen size bed – it’s only meant to be a lap quilt, but a big one!

Next is making up the back. I’ve decided to simply sew the napkin squares together.  Circles on the front and squares on the back.

I will have to put a border around these as they are smaller than the blocks on the front. I’m in the process of trying to wash the cotton batting I am going to use to eliminate shrinkage when the finished quilt is washed. Most of the time I love that “crinkly” look when a quilt is washed for the first time. However, with this quilt having such a large design, I think it might be better if it lays more flat. If the batting survives the washing and drying process, I guess we’ll see.

It was a remarkable day and the two families have blended together perfectly. If we lived closer together (we’re in DC and they are in IL), I’m sure we would be good friends. As it is, we have great fun when we do get together.


  1. I love seeing pictures from the wedding and the set table to go with seeing the fabrics from the napkins turn into a gorgeous quilt. Thanks for sharing your quilt story!

  2. A beautiful story and a beautiful quilt. Thanks so much for sharing, Linda.