Friday, February 24, 2012
It's a Bird, It's a Plane....It's a Plane Quilt
About three weeks ago, I was reading a quilting blog that I enjoy and the writer referenced a Flickr photo she had seen of a quilt that was displayed at the Tokyo International Quilt Show--all she wrote was '81 airplanes'. Immediately, I clicked and fell in love with this quilt. You see, we have an airplane lover in our house--actually, lover is not a strong enough word--perhaps obsessed or fixated gives a better picture of my son Isaac's fascination with airplanes. He was pointing out flying things in the sky long before he could talk or walk. Currently, at 8 years of age, he studies a 500 page book on classic military aircraft and is involved in an 'identify this airplane' game with his grandpa over e-mail.
So yes, I had to make this quilt. About 12 hours after first seeing the quilt from the Tokyo show I began sketching my own block. I decided upon a 9 inch block--and calculated I would have to make 63 blocks.
Here is my sketch that I cut up to make my templates--I glued the paper pieces to the cardboard so I could place my fabric pieces there until they were ready to be sewn---with 16 different pieces to each block and I was quite certain if I didn't organize it this way I would be mixing up pieces and frustrating myself.
I dug through all of my fabric scraps first--I wanted to use as many of those as possible--and then I went for solids and other prints that I had yardage of. I had so much fun putting the 63 blocks together. Each block took on average 30 minutes to cut out (by hand), sew, press, and trim. That is at least 31.5 hours of quilting. As I laid in bed last night I told my husband that I can't believe I finished this quilt top in less than 3 weeks. I thought it would take me months--it turns out that quilting gives me super-natural powers :)
And so here it is--Isaac's airplane quilt--with one piece of border missing--it's on order and should arrive next week. When I asked Isaac what he thought of it he said "Totally awesome." A high compliment as any mother of an 8 year old would tell you!
By the way, the border and tiny one inch squares separating the blocks is Yarn Dyed Essex Linen and Cotton blend fabric from Robert Kaufman Fabrics in Denim--it is a joy to work with and gives the quilt that boy feeling I was looking for. I found mine here.
So, my next step is finishing it off---I am in need of some advice---has anyone out there ever sent a quilt to the Amish to be hand-quilted? What kind of cost are we talking for a twin size quilt? I would like to try it--I have Googled it but I would like to have a personal recommendation if possible.
I am linking up to Amanda Jean's 'Finish it Up Friday'.
Have a great weekend--I will be dreaming up my next project......
at 6:23 AM