Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Wedding present cushion

My eldest nephew is getting married in London on Saturday.  This is the one I am committed to making a quilt for as a present.  However, I made it very clear that it would be some months before they see it (after all I also have Zelah's quilt half made and heard last week that she has now gone into a proper bed!).  So I have made them a cushion as a sample/promise that they will get it.

In the end I went back to the Churn Dash block I had tried in June.  The churns will be yellow and the backgrounds greens and blues.  They do not want yellow greens which is fine by me but makes it virtually impossible to choose fabric on-line so collecting the fabrics is taking some time.  Making the cushion front was quite easy but it ended up a very non-standard size which meant I had to make the cushion pad myself rather than buying one.  This taxed my brain somewhat as I did not want the cushion cover gaping at the back.  It now has two buttons fastened by loops.  I was really relieved when I finished it yesterday.  However, it also means I need to carry it to London and pass it over to a member of the family on Sunday as I thought posting it would be very awkward and probably cost rather a lot because of the pricing based on size.

My husband keeps asking me what the origin of the Churn Dash block is.  It is not easy to find out.  The only place I have found a reference to it is in America's Glorious Quilts by Dennis Duke and Deborah Harding (1987) where it is listed in a group of blocks inspired by trades.  So there you are - some dairy maid/farmer.  Since milking was such a female task I like to think this block is feminist!

In addition to making the quilt, I have had to make myself a top to wear to this wedding.  With hindsight I should never have decided to try and put together an outfit using clothes I already had.  It would have been quicker and easier to start from scratch but down here we never wear formal clothes so it felt like a waste of money.  Making the top really took me back to my teenage years when I made absolutely everything.  It wasn't a difficult job but the fabric is a rather slippery satin type polyester which I had no experience of using. Fortunately the man in our local embroidery/sewing shop was really knowledgeable and told me to use TearAway in the seams.  This meant I had no problems at all but the whole exercise did feel rather nostalgic.

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