Category Archives: Keepsake Quilts

A wedding dress makes such a fabulous keepsake quilt

and I do love that I get to make so many of them 🙂

This particular transformation into a wedding dress keepsake quilt all started with a request to make one like one shown on someone else’s website.

I really don’t do copying, and especially with wedding dresses, where I think the design for each one has to be unique, to properly reflect the character of the dress, and preserve as much detail as possible. I truly don’t think there is a generic one-size-fits-all pattern that can be applied to every dress, so each one is a new design, and a new adventure for me.

It all starts with the dress …. this was a gorgeous flowing Maggie Sottero dress, with a lace overlay and a fabulous beaded bodice …..

wedding dress keepsake quilt

The first step is always to take everything apart …..

wedding dress keepsake quilt

And then it can all get put back together …. I’m using a scaled-up log cabin version here, making the most of the lace and beading ….. the tricky part in the design and figuring process is always figuring how much to deconstruct – in this case, it made sense to leave the interfacing in place beneath the satin and lace overlays, to help hold the weight and structure of the ruched and beaded central panel ….

wedding dress keepsake quilt

Removing the lace sections from the satin in the main part of the quilt means that I can arrange the beaded sections to best show them off – even though it does then mean that I have to spent a bit (*that may be underestimated!) of time resewing the beads ….. few things are worse than the rattle of falling beads when you move a quilt.

wedding dress keepsake quilt

The most lovely, delicate, silvery beading detail on the lace ….. it pretty much begged me to echo it in the quilting ….

wedding dress keepsake quilt

I’m using coats ‘seta reale’ thread for this …. it has such a lovely sheen on it, so it’s well worth the extra aggravation in my opinion 🙂

wedding dress keepsake quilt

No messing about with this – I use 505 basting spray, add a long basting stitch and secure critical points with safety pins. I do NOT want this slippery fabric moving around on me whilst I’m quilting, and these wedding dress quilts are heavy.

wedding dress keepsake quilt

A simple binding on this one ….. just 1/2 inch of satin, very plain, very effective.

wedding dress keepsake quilt

And done ….. I love the way it seems to just shimmer, and the variations in it from the different directions of the grain of the satin. So pretty ….. and very special. And away it goes home 🙂

A keepsake memory quilt for a little girl

After a couple of projects I was asked not to share, it’s lovely to be back, and with a gorgeous quilt (if I do say so myself 😉 ).

This time, a keepsake memory quilt for a little girl, made from her baby clothes ….. lots of fresh, pretty colours to work with ….

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

The beginning always feels like a herculean task …. for a twin (single) bed size of quilt, 208 4.5″ squares are needed ….. and when I’m dealing with sleepsuits in stretch jersey, that means that the vast majority of them need to be interfaced first ……

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

But we get there in the end, and then it’s a matter of arranging them all ….. this is the tricky part!  And this time I was asked for a random layout with no obvious pattern to it – which presents its own challenges. The simplest way, I’ve found, is to sort all the pieces into lights, darks, and mediums (pieces that could be light or dark, depending on positioning), and take it from there.

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

Not all pinks are equal, so not all pinks will sit happily next to each other, and with this quilt there were some strong contrast pieces , so it took a fair while to arrive at a happy balance. But once we got there, it went quite quickly …

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

I make the individual squares up into 12″ blocks, and then piece the blocks together … over time, I’ve found it’s the method that works best for me ….

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

Blocks and blocks …..

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

Until we have a complete quilt top …. and on to backing, batting and basting. I use a temporary fabric adhesive spray to hold everything together, and then run a basting line with the machine at 12″ intervals vertically and horizontally to hold everything in place before I start into the quilting …..

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

This time, an all over meandering stipple …. fairly large scale, because we wanted to end up with a fairly soft, puffy quilt ….

Baby clothes keepsake memory quilt

A simple foldover binding, and an edging of hot fuschia-pink ribbon, and we’re done.

Years and years of happy snuggles …..