Saturday, September 23, 2017

Derrick's Memories ~~ finished!

Yes, finally! This tee-shirt memory quilt is a big one. The biggest I've made, I'm sure. Mom is an acquaintance who saved her only son's athletic shirts for all of his games, and apparently there were many, many games. This young man played soccer, football, basketball, karate and baseball. There were well over 40 shirts but we cut that down to about 35 because who needs a California king tee-shirt quilt? 

I used his last football jersey and his karate uniform as 3D designs. The karate shirt opens to show the logo on the back. I had to turn it around, but that was easy enough. 

The football jersey was a real struggle. Firstly, it's made of that athletic stretchy mesh that seems to stick to the needle. Secondly, he was pretty rough on it, and apparently the way to fix a tear is to sew from neck to hem, catching the rip along the way. 

There are three such fixes. Thirdly, the top of the shirt is stretched out of shape or maybe it's just shaped to go over those big pads. Either way, it does not lie flat. Instead it bunches up and piles up and does not cooperate in any way. 

What do I do when this happens? Don't fight it: make it one of the three-dimensional pieces. Well, okay, fight with it a little bit, but that was necessary to get the shirt to look right. I was aiming for a dropped-on-the-floor look. (It is a boy's shirt after all, and we all know that boys drop everything stinky on the floor.) Not too messy or bunched up because everything important needs to show. Hey girl, I figured it out! And it looks pretty good.

Know what one of the problems of working on such a big quilt is? The weight! This quilt is heavy. Of course, there are in some places four layers of fabric and batting. And let's remember that it's a huge quilt, 78 x 96. Mom said that her son is well over six feet tall, so she wanted it long.

Mostly, though, this quilt was lots of fun: I played while quilting it. A couple of shirts have "mustangs" on them, so I quilted horse-shoes. I quilted around all of the big letters and numbers individually so they would stand out. On one shirt I quilted in sports words. On another there are numbers, but not just any numbers. He had so many different numbers, I could quilt in his numbers, even 00 from his soccer jerseys. Plus circles, squares, loops and anything else I could think of.

Quilt Stats
Derrick's Memories
78" X 96"
Tee-shirts provided by mom
stash fabrics
puzzle setting

Then after all that sewing and quilting and binding, I took it out for a little photo session. The sun was just going down, but wow, it was hot. How do people work in this weather? After about three pics, I was done. Inside Adam and Richard held up the quilt for a few seconds (no, really, seconds) while I snapped four more. Two of those are so blurred that I deleted them, and one of the two remaining doesn't show the bottom. Not many left.  lol

 I still somehow found enough that I took during the process (to send to the client) that I could create a collage of the work in progress. A memory quilt finish that I am certain the family will love. 

Bloggers Quilt FestivalIt's time for the Bloggers' Quilt Festival at Amy's Creative Side, so I'll enter this post (just under the wire, I'm afraid), and also kick it about to all of my favorite haunts. Please go by Amy's to see all the beautiful quilts. My entry is #201! It will take a while to visit all of them. Last year I left the page open so when I had just a few minutes, I could pop over to see a few quilts. 

And at these fine Link Ups near you!


Karen S said...

This has turned into a wonderful memory quilt. You have been very creative with how you have used the shirts. I am stunned by how big it is!!

Kaja said...

Great finish! I especially like the 'just thrown on the floor' idea - very original. said...

You made a monster of a quilt, kudos for you for coming up with uninventive design plus then doing all the work of sewing it and quilting it. I know from past experiences that t-shirt quilts are heavy. Thanks for sharing, I need to rest now after reading this post.

The Joyful Quilter said...

I finished a Monster T Quilt earlier this year, but didn't think to enter it into the Blogger's Quilt Festival. You did a great job on yours!! 3-D blocks present particularly challenging design decisions.

Danette said...

Well done! I made one tshirt quilt. Don't know if I will try it again. It's an accomplishment for sure!

Preeti said...

Bet it feels great to conquer that beast. It is not an easy project. I have made one such quilt and have no desire to go that route again. Kudos to you for coming out on top of that quilt :-D

Sandy Panagos said...

What a great finish! I'm sure it will be treasured. The 3-D parts are interesting for sure! I'm working on my first T-shirt quilt and have a few Hawaiian shirts, gonna have to think about that.....

Vicki in MN said...

Love both your entries into the Festival, nice job on them:)

Tu-Na Quilts said...

What a fun quilt of memories!! I've yet to make a t-shirt quilt but my son cleaned out his closet and handed me lots of his participation shirts so I guess there's one in my future. I've heard they get heavy.

Pamela said...

Love to see all these memories sewn together and ready to be enjoyed as a quilt!