Monday, February 19, 2007

Another Row by Row Quilt

Several of you asked about Row x Row Quilts so I thought I would show you one that guild members made for me. This is my most special quilt.

If you've never made one, this is how we did it. The coordinator grouped 5-7 of us in a group. Each person participating (the owner), starts with a box with 1 yard of focus fabric and 1 yard of background, and then leaves a note in the box expressing preferences, or theme, or a poem, a song, whatever, for inspiration to each person along the way. The owner makes one row to equal 42 1/2 inches wide, and at the next guild meeting, passes it to the next person on the list; at the same time, she receives a box from the previous person on the list. You make a row, hopefully related to the theme, adding fabric from your stash as needed. Timeliness is important, and each person is encouraged NOT TO BE LATE although life has a way of getting in the way!

At the end of the time period, the owner gets her box back with 5, 6, or 7 rows completed. No one tells during this time - all is secret. What excitement to open that box! Now, it's a bit of a challenge for the owner to put it together, in a cohesive manner. Usually, you add the sashing, or maybe another dark row, or light row, whatever the owner feels is needed, as necessary. Some of the rows will end up longer or shorter than 42 1/2 inches, even though we all try to be accurate. It's surprising that an odd conglomeration of rows and colors will end up so beautiful.

My theme on this quilt was "Farm Memories." (I was very lucky to have grown up on a farm, yet have a large city nearby!) I remember what each person said about the row they made and the quilt became very personal. I added a wide border on mine. Because I LOVED it, I decided it just HAD to be hand quilted (not yet quilted in this photo). What pleasure to handle it for 3-4 months for the finished product to appear, loving every step along the way! I may bore you with the story behind each row, but maybe you will read between the lines and hear how dear this quilt is to me.

Top row, by Alice. "Since you lived on a farm, you HAD to have a tractor." Alice put a John Deere tractor in her row -- I never told her my Dad rolled steel for International Harvester tractors!

Tree Row - I actually HAD these in my stash, and needed a place to put them. This represents the orchard and many trees I climbed as a girl.

Hen and Chickens - This was my starting row. Note the extra HST on each end to bring it up to size. My focus fabric was a sweet blue floral.

Paper pieced row, by Sydney. My barn, my house (with the lights on), trees, my walk to school (7 miles, through 9 feet of snow, of course!), and the church next to the school where I was supposed to be changing the hymn numbers, but occasionally played the organ. One time I played boogie-woogie on that humongous old fashioned pipe organ - holy smoke it was LOUD -- neighbors made sure I didn't do that again! I got in Trouble!

Windmill - with ME feeding the chickens, in the center, made by Sydney. And YES, I DID feed chickens. Sydney was a new quilter at that time, but she progressed rapidly.

Hole in the Barn Door - by Vickie - not sure if you can see the details, but in the center of each block is a fussy cut motif or picture, "Some of the things you probably saw looking out that barn door." My gosh, I practically grew up in that barn! How sweet is that!

Garden Walk, by Bonnie - for all my Mother's efforts at gardening on the farm.

An extra checkerboard row by me, just for fun.

Block is called, "Going to Chicago" - by Laura. But I came FROM Chicago, so she changed the direction of the block. Clever?

That's me on the left. 8-) Happy day thinking of those times.


Nellie's Needles said...

Thank you for sharing all this .. you're story in the quilt as well as how to approach making one. Wonderful!

Anonymous said...

Please share how you bound the table topper with the diamond shaped baby blocks. I cannot find out how to do the corners and have painted myself into a 60 degree diamond corner!!

Diana said...

Nice idea for a round robin and beautiful result. I can see why it is so special to you!

Shelina said...

This is a pretty quilt. I think it is great that people took the time to make each row really mean something. Everything is tied together so well.

Joyce said...

i love the quilt . Such a great idea for a round robin.

MARCIE said...

What a treasure! I love that you have such nice memories for each row and such nice friends to commorate them!

Melinda said...

I love your row by row quilt. Thank you so much for letting me know you posted it.

LuĂ­sa Silva said...

Lovely idea. Thank you for sharing your memories with us too.

Evelyn aka Starfishy said...

How nice to have such a personalized and treasured quilt.



Sweet P said...

You have one beautiful quilt with a great story to go with it. I have a Row x Row quilt that is ready for me to put together. I should dig it out and work on it.

hardenbrookgirl said...

Just now finding time to catch up on all the posts in the last week. It's certainly understandable why you love this quilt. What a treasure! It was delightful reading your memories - I especially loved hearing about playing the boogie woogie on the church organ!

SuBee said...

What a wonderful, thoughtful bunch of friends! I hope that whole story is on the label? It's super-duper!

YankeeQuilter said...

I so love the stories behind quilts...this is a great one.