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50th Anniversary Wall Quilt

50th Anniversary Wall Quilt

Old 02-11-2016, 08:10 AM
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Default 50th Anniversary Wall Quilt

My parents 50th Anniversary is in June and I decided that since they dont want a party, I would take this opportunity to do an art quilt. So I decided to find a picture from their wedding and draw their portrait in colored pencil on fabric.

I found a picture I liked and cropped it close to their faces. I decided to stop trying to free hand everything, even though I can draw, trying to get the proportions right is quite difficult. So I went the easy route and bought a small projector. Within 10 minutes, I had mom and dad projected onto my 20x20 fabric square on the wall. I roughly sketched them in and 15 minutes later I was done and my proportions were correct.


I got out my colored pencils and went to work. I also knew that Id darken the background up a bit with inks or perhaps coffee and I wound up using inks. It came out with a nice sepia toned background making it look rather vintage.


After getting the colored pencil part done, my portrait was 18x18 and I wanted to make some blocks from the embroidery pattern Affair of the Heart by Aie Rossman. I purchased the pattern with every intention of making all 36 blocks and making a fancy colorful quilt with my fabric scraps and I still might. But I thought Id use those blocks since they are centered around a heart shape and frame the colored pencil portrait with the blocks. And since its for their 50th which is traditionally gold, I thought Id make the blocks in all creams, tans and of course gold. They turned out really nice.

But the blocks are either 6 finishing at 7 or 8 finishing at 9. So I decided to add 3 mitered border around the portrait making it 21x21. I shopped for fabrics and found a nice golden brown solid fabric and a whitish/tan marble with gold print.

But before I added the borders, I decided the area above mom was pretty empty and should be quilted. I liked the idea of a 50 in the corner but I also wanted the quilting to be subtle yet pretty. I also had no idea what other quilting design I would use. So after a few days, I thought about using the Ohio quilt block, which is pretty much a star pattern. So I got out the projector again and placed my 50, a large star and a small star. In the areas around the designs, I thought I'd just do some scrolling vines and leaves. I won't go into all the agony I went through in picking the thread I used but I'm sure you all understand my suffering. I went with a variegated cotton thread that is cream, tan and darker tan. I also used a cream colored silk thread, which matched the background. After I got the designs outlined, they just kinda blended in and it looked boring and blah, so I did a tight meander stitch in the large star and suddenly the thread really popped and I liked it so well I filled in the 50 and filled in the small star with the cream thread. And I have to admit, these pictures really don't do it justice.



After the quilting, I got back to the borders. I had this vision in my head of a darker solid around the portrait and then a lighter fabric around that. I found what I wanted and now I just had to figure out how to miter the corners. And like any normal person, I surfed YouTube and found several videos about how to make a mitered border and it didnt seem hard at all however, I had a great deal of trouble. I sewed and picked repeatedly until I want to scream but I finally, finally got it all to work out. This was definitely the hardest part for me. I can draw and paint but sewing is challenge.

Anyway, after I got the borders on, I auditioned the blocks I made around the portrait. It wasn't too hard to figure out since they all look fairly good. I did the best I could keeping everything straight but I'm pretty sure some things look wonky.




I also thought it would be nice for friends and family members to contribute a little to this wall hanging. So I asked everyone my parents know to send me a message for my parents. I don't have any yet, but I'll print the well wishings on fabric and hand stitch them to the back. I also found some other pictures of my parents (before/after marriage) that I thought I'd print out and put on the back as well.

The wall quilt is 36x36"
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Lisa0318 is offline  
Old 02-11-2016, 08:15 AM
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Wow! It's just beautiful. Your parents will be thrilled with this!
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:16 AM
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Wonderful! You are so creative! I'm sure they will enjoy it.
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:26 AM
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Wow, this is amazing. They will be so thrilled and honored.
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:35 AM
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Just beautiful! What a wonderful tribute!
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:43 AM
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Your quilt is amazing. Love your drawing, your color choices and the quilting. Priceless gift. Last June my parents had their 65th wedding anniversary and we asked everyone they knew to send a hand written letter of their favorite memories of mom and dad. They were put in a nice album that mom (dad passed in Sept.) keeps on the coffee table. We all love the letters and fun memories that it brings back.
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Old 02-11-2016, 08:45 AM
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amazing, a real treasure
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Old 02-11-2016, 09:01 AM
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What an amazing quilt! I'm sure your parents will be absolutely thrilled and treasure it!
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Old 02-11-2016, 09:03 AM
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You created a beautiful quilt
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Old 02-11-2016, 09:12 AM
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What a beautiful labor of love!! I love every detail and I know they will too. Family heirloom for sure!!!!
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