Fabric Quilt Journal

My year-long project for 2018 was based on a book, 52 Tuesdays, by Sandy Gilreath. I loved the idea of making weekly hexagon blocks to represent memories of special people, places, things, or events. The author was very generous with her idea and encouraged the readers to create their own quilt journal. There were 52 Fridays in 2018, so that is the name of my quilt. I also kept a hard copy journal of the process and the memory of each block. It was a learning process for me. I used this as an opportunity to practice quilting skills and learn new skills. My first block was the very first time I thread sketched a piece. I also dabbled in fabric paint, crayons, and pencils. It was a great way to use scraps. If I were to do it differently, I would not complete each hexagon with backing. Sewing the completed hexagons together did not work out for me. I took it to my friend, Jeana, who decided the best thing to do would be to longarm the quilt. She did a great job. She returned it to me a few months ago, but I have been doing other projects…binding is not my favorite thing to do. I needed to complete this project before I continued working on other projects. I spent the afternoon looking at each block and remembering  2018. The stories represented by each block definitely made me smile today.

Block #49~Friday, December 7

Today, I am catching up with making the blocks for my fabric quilt journal. I had the ideas, and drawn my designs, but I am just now able to get them done.
During this first week of December, I found myself surrounded with the sounds and sights of Christmas. My sewing studio is decked out with Christmas decorations. I have been listening to Christmas music while I’ve been working on gift projects and quilts. On one occasion, I visited a mall. This is where I saw children lined up to see Santa. This brought back a special Christmas memory from my childhood.
The Santa kiosk at the mall was festive, but no way compared to the visit to Santa of my youth.
Joske’s was a premiere department store in San Antonio from 1888-1987. My childhood home was in downtown San Antonio. near Joske’s. In the 50’s and 60’s, downtown San Antonio played a central part of my life. As a child, I could not wait for Joske’s to set up the huge Santa on top of the building. I also loved visiting the special Fantasy Land that Joske’s created in the store during the season. My mother and my aunt would pile my cousins, my older sister, and me into the 1952 Chevy and take us to see Santa. I have a photo of me with Santa, that is from 1954. The special memory of this visit came to mind this week, so I included it as Block #49.

Block #49~ Friday, December 7
Christmas Memory-Santa and Me
Background: Holly Christmas fabric; brocade backing
Technique: Photo printed on fabric; strip patched

Block #50~ Friday, December 14
Karate Kid
My son sent me a photo of my grandson on his first night at karate class.
It made my week!
The smile on his face speaks volumes.
I printed the photo on fabric, and framed it with polka-dot fabric.

I can not believe that there are only two more Fridays remaining in the year!

Block #48~Great Blue Heron~Friday, November 30

The Meemaws spent the last weekend in November visiting Rockport, Texas. The purpose for our trip was to take the Whooping Crane and Coastal Birding tour and just have fun.  We were able to spot 25 different species of birds. Watching a family of three Whooping Cranes defend their one mile territory from intruding Whooping Cranes was absolutely amazing. My most favorite bird, however, was the Great Blue Heron. I ran across some individual Herons in different locations and was able to get up close.

These photos were taken in the early afternoon.

This photo was taken in the early morning. It is my favorite.

The Great Blue Heron was the trip’s hit for me, so I included it in my fabric quilt journal. I am late in making the hexagon block because I am finishing off Christmas projects.

Block #48~Friday, November 30
Great Blue Heron
Background: Cotton linen; marbled beige backing
Technique: Applique, thread-sketching, FMQ

Block # 45~ Friday, November 9

Autumn weather hit home this week. I enjoyed my cup of coffee and the brisk weather out on the side porch. As I would sip on my coffee, a crow would perch on the highest limb of one of the trees. This crow would caw to me every morning.
It is said that when a crow caws at you he is telling you to be bolder, braver, and brazen in your self-expression.
Something to contemplate.
I enjoyed the crow’s visits so much, that I couldn’t pass up these adorable crows I found at a store.
These crows are now perched on the work table in my studio, and I can hear them cawing at me.

(I made this cloth pumpkin last year.)

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Block #45~Friday, November 9
Be Bold
Background: 100% cotton, feather print
Technique:
Applique

Block # 44~Friday, November 2

The block for this week is all about two fur babies, Marley and Richard Parker. They were my closest and dearest companions for over a week.
Marley is a geriatric dog that is still going strong, in spite of some maladies. It was great to see her frisky and playful as we sat outside and enjoyed the fall weather. As I spent time on my sewing machine, Marley would lay right behind my chair keeping me company.
Richard Parker is an adorable cat with plenty of personality. He would leap onto my sewing machine whenever he thought I had spent too much time not giving him the attention he deserves. He would jump on my lap whenever I sat to watch movies.
Both of these fur babies are great listeners. They would listen to me chat for hours on end.
Marley and Richard Parker…truly, unconditional love at its best.
 

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Block #44 Friday, November 2
Fur Babies
Background: 100% cotton floral; grey backing
Technique: Applique

Block # 43~ Friday, October 26

It was a whirlwind, emotional wedding weekend. I am taking a few days to put my feet up, sip on my coffee, and reflect on the blessings in my life. Then, I will be off to house and pet sit while the honeymooners are on their cruise. This will give me the opportunity to take my sewing lessons at the store from which I bought my sewing machine. I will also catch up with friends in the area. It will be my retreat.

Block #43~Friday, October 26
Pause to Reflect
Background: Fabric remnants from a bird quilt that has yet to be quilted.
Technique: Applique

Block #40~ October 5

Autumn is slowly making its appearance in my part of Texas. The days are still warm, but there is a breeze. This week, I had a very special autumn evening. My son, Ed, and his wife, Shenika, came to Austin for a business trip. Since they live in a city that is further than I feel comfortable driving, I do not get to see them as much as I would like.  The block for this week commemorates this special visit.
Shenika made me two ghost mug rugs and a Halloween wreath. The wreath is hanging on the door to my studio. It reads: The Witch is In.

Wreath

Block #40 ~October 5
The Witch is In
Background: 
I used the strips that were leftover from the Halloween place mats that I made.
The background is a remnant of the candy corn fabric that was used in making the place mats.
Technique:  My new sewing machine has a foot for stitch-in-the-ditch, so I got to try it out.
Applique

Block #38~ Friday, September 21

The block for my journal is all about special memories about sewing, friends, and my Tia Isidra.
This past week, my friend, Francine, set up a special sewing class for me and two of my friends.
Francine is the owner of Las Colchas. My friends and I were given special attention and guidance, as we attempted to make clothes for ourselves. As we were sewing, we shared stories about how we got interested in making our own clothes. One of my friends had a mother who made all of her clothes for her. Another friend, weaves her own fabric, and is now interested in making clothing. We had so much fun learning, sewing, laughing, and remembering.
My interest in making clothes comes from my Tia Isidra. Tia made fabulous clothes for all of my Madame Alexander Dolls. I had the best dressed dolls! Every summer,Tia made me a fancy birthday dress for my birthday. She let me choose the fabric, which usually included organza. Tia would make the petticoat attached to the dresses. I always felt so pretty in those full, poofy, fancy dresses.
In high school, I took a Home Economics class. Tia helped me with my sewing project. From her, I learned that the finish on the inside had to be as good as the outer outfit.
The block entry for this week was made with the fabric I chose for making a tunic. It represents more than the outfit I made for myself. It represents memories of a very special aunt, and a time with friends.

Block #38~ Friday, September 21
Sew Special
Background: 
Yellow 100% cotton
Technique: Applique