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Thread: Creating quilts for other people

  1. #1
    Super Member Flying_V_Goddess's Avatar
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    When I went to my friend's party last week, we got to talking about her pregnacy and her due date happens to be like a week before her birthday so she's kind of worried that for her birthday everyone is going to get things for the baby, but not anything for her. So I want to get her something extra special. I figure "Why not a quilt?" Its gotta be creative, like Deni, and its gotta have her favorite color in it (deep red). But I can't seem to come up with anything.

    When you guys are creating a quilt for a specific person in mind how do you go about it or what inspires you to create something that would be perfect for them?

  2. #2
    Steve's Avatar
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    So far mine has been just the opposite. Create and know to whom it belongs. I've come up with a couple specific things in mind, but they are the most troubling. Plan as you will, the medium may beg to differ. :wink:

  3. #3
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    It has to be a combination of things they love and something that you can deal with for the duration of the time it takes to complete the project.

    Does the person like a certain color or theme? What is the décor of the room in which the quilt will reside? A beautiful Baltimore Album quilt would feel out of place in a Danish Modern room. Do the person’s tastes change frequently? Maybe a heavy dose of neutrals would still work when they repaint their room electric blue a month from now.

    What are they passionate about? Incorporating things that they love into a quilt is always a good idea. This could take the form of an appliqué (like butterflies) or symbolism (think of the old pattern names - Road to California for someone moving west). I’ve taken liberties with using music and freeform doodles in the quilting itself to further the quilt’s story.

    What is the timeframe? The most wonderful plans sometimes have to be simplified in order to conform to harsh reality. Maybe that wonderful appliqué in your head could be scaled back and surrounded by patchwork blocks. If you have known the person for a while, think of things that excite them. A modern art lover may love a simple Mondrian-inspired block pattern in solids. Beyond that, think of their masculine / feminine tastes and outlook in general. Quilts last a long time, so don’t tie yourself down to this season’s fashion or colors. I bet all the women out there with “big hair” pictures tucked away are saying “Amen” to that one.

    Also, no nice way to phrase this – do they like and respect quilts? I’ve made some that were gifts that were packed away and never used because they were “too pretty to use” and others that were worn threadbare as favorite blankies. There are plenty of threads here about quilts misused by those who just did not appreciate them. If I knew that they treated quilts like paper towels, I would make them a box of candy or cookies instead.



  4. #4
    Super Member Flying_V_Goddess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moonpi
    It has to be a combination of things they love and something that you can deal with for the duration of the time it takes to complete the project.

    Does the person like a certain color or theme? What is the décor of the room in which the quilt will reside? A beautiful Baltimore Album quilt would feel out of place in a Danish Modern room. Do the person’s tastes change frequently? Maybe a heavy dose of neutrals would still work when they repaint their room electric blue a month from now.

    What are they passionate about? Incorporating things that they love into a quilt is always a good idea. This could take the form of an appliqué (like butterflies) or symbolism (think of the old pattern names - Road to California for someone moving west). I’ve taken liberties with using music and freeform doodles in the quilting itself to further the quilt’s story.

    What is the timeframe? The most wonderful plans sometimes have to be simplified in order to conform to harsh reality. Maybe that wonderful appliqué in your head could be scaled back and surrounded by patchwork blocks. If you have known the person for a while, think of things that excite them. A modern art lover may love a simple Mondrian-inspired block pattern in solids. Beyond that, think of their masculine / feminine tastes and outlook in general. Quilts last a long time, so don’t tie yourself down to this season’s fashion or colors. I bet all the women out there with “big hair” pictures tucked away are saying “Amen” to that one.

    Also, no nice way to phrase this – do they like and respect quilts? I’ve made some that were gifts that were packed away and never used because they were “too pretty to use” and others that were worn threadbare as favorite blankies. There are plenty of threads here about quilts misused by those who just did not appreciate them. If I knew that they treated quilts like paper towels, I would make them a box of candy or cookies instead.
    She told me her favorite color is deep red (I asked her, not telling her I had a quilt in mind) so I want to incorporate that. Black would probably be another good option since she has a lot of it in her waredrobe. She really doesn't have a certain decor going on. Wood paneling, lots of candles, music posters, and a couple of framed Chris Cornell autographs come to mind...slightly chaotic.

    Well, she's really passionate about art, tattooes, and music so I'm not thinking a traditional quilt would work. Its gotta be bold and creative, but not crazy. I'm going to go for something that is pieced because I suck at applique (believe me, you wouldn't want my applique skills going into a quilt. lol). So I figure that what ever I come up with for her will be something I can stand looking at for however long it takes me to get it done.

    She's an artist herself so I doubt she wouldn't see the value in it and the work that was put into it. When I went to her house one time I slept with the denim quilt I made and she really thought it was awesome. Plus, if her fears of getting baby stuff for her birthday come true she'll probably appreaciate it even more. lol.

    Her birthday is in early September so I have plenty of time to think and make something.

  5. #5
    Super Member Barb M's Avatar
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    Well, if it was me, this is what i would do. i would make an irish chain in black, with a tan coloured background to the whole quilt. In between the irish chains, i would put paper pieced red roses, because red is her favourite colour, and red roses are for love, and you love your friend. In the border i would put golden stars, but not 8 point stars, 5 point friendship stars, because she is your friend, and because you want her to be able to wish upon a star for her special birthday wish. Then i would border it with black. Steve was asking in another thread how people create their quilts, this is how i create mine, i think of the person, what they mean to me, and how i can create those thoughts on fabric.

  6. #6
    Super Member zyxquilts's Avatar
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    The quilts I have made to give away incorporated their favorite colors and my favorites patterns. To me, giving a quilt is giving something of myself. I think, since you are artistic too, that your g/friend would appreciate ANY pattern you used in her quilt - as long as you didn't use baby fabric in it! lol If you aren't ready to do one of your new designs yet, you could take a cruise thru' www.quilterscache.com & see what strikes you. :D

  7. #7
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    How about some fabric like this?

    http://thefabricfairy.com/fabric_31/Alexander-Henry-Fabric.htm


  8. #8
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    The blank blocks of Irish chains would give you a space to use interesting designs. if you went with black backgrouns, patterned or batik red chains, and bright quilting in the blocks, it would be striking. You could take general shapes from classic tats - hearts, stars, even Celtic or tribal motifs.

    Done in the red or a varigated jeweltone quilting thread, it would really pop. I think the key will be finding the right red. take some black paper with a square cutout the same size as finished chain squares when you go shopping and audition a batch. You'll soon get a feel for the ones that will cut nicely, and those that would be swallowed up in the darkness.

    How is your hand embroidery? There are some rayon embroidery threads that just light up next to black.

  9. #9
    Super Member Quilting Aggi's Avatar
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    most of the time I tend to go towards their favourite colours or something they are interested in. For instance, I made a camping theme quilt for a couple friend as they love camping... They take it with them camping now and never leave it behind.

  10. #10
    Super Member vicki reno's Avatar
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    Moonpi suggestions are far more creative than anything I can think of. If you are like me, and don't enjoy paper piecing, and still want to use this idea, you could get a fabric maybe with large flowers in ti and not have to worry about piecing or applique. Just fussy cut the block centered around the flower.
    Or just cut the flower out and fuse it to your background. I can send you a pkg of fine fuse and a pressing sheet if that method interests you. All that you need to do after that is topstitch the piece to the background--just straight stitching.

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