A family that I've known my whole life recently lost someone very special. Sonja was loved by so many, not least by her three beautiful daughters and her husband. I'm not great with words, I never know what to say at times of such sadness......so I usually don't. I am brilliant at saying very little and shying away from situations when I probably should say something thoughtful and profound. Sonja's three girls, Kelsie, Alisha and Sofia are pretty amazing and I wanted to do something to let them know that I'm thinking of them. I might not say the right things (probably the very opposite in fact) but my heart is with them during this terribly rough time.
So, I had started the Economy Block Along a few months ago and realised that the fabric I had chosen to feature really reminded me of Alisha. It has a couple of different Riley Blake fabrics that show a little girl picking apples, feeding the chickens, going camping and all sorts of other activities. Alisha, in all the years I've known her, has been up to something interesting - whether it's fishing for mackerel with her aunty G, baking with her nana or crocheting but she's always seems to be doing something! So I was about half way through this quilt when I realised that this was her quilt and it gave me more pleasure to finish it with her in mind!
I had a few extra blocks left over so I added them in to the backing and then I used offcuts from all the blocks to make a scrappy binding. I think I love scrappy-effect quilts most of all, they're so girlie and fun!
Next, I moved on to little Sofia's quilt. I am an unashamed lover of paper-piecing so I found some patterns online that featured lots of different Fairy Tales and I thought they would be perfect. Sofia is just 4 and a little fire-cracker - full of personality and has a lovely cheeky glint in her eye. I thought she might find it fun to tell the stories in her quilt.
Each block features a different fairy story - The Ugly Duckling, Snow White, The Three Pigs, Puss In Boots and more........ the only one that didn't really stand out to me was the Three Pigs so I asked Sofias lovely Aunty Gina to make me some piggy buttons to help that block and now I love that block!!! Gina has always been a whizz with Fimo, since forever (!), and she really helped me out with this despite the fact that she was heading to America and is still very much dealing with losing her lovely sister, Sonja, herself. I really love that she had a little part in Sofias quilt - even though she didn't even know what the buttons were for!
Tada! (Can you name each fairytale?)
Kelsie is that bit older than her sisters and I didn't want to make anything too childish for her but I wanted it to be a bit of a memory quilt for her too. I decided to make a family tree, a little reminder that she's surrounded by so many of her family when she's missing her mum.
I didn't have a pattern or anything for this so just drew out the tree freehand appliquéd it and the leaves and then embroidered all the family names putting her own little family at the top centre and then all Sonja's family to the right - including grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins and the same for her dad Clives family to the left. One little leaf is awaiting a name of the newest cousin, who is a little boy, due in October!
I asked for a little help regarding Kelsies colours and was told greens and pinks....... thankfully, her lovely granny and my lovely friend, Heather, said we got it right, phew! I quite like the colours myself. I had planned to machine quilt this one but in the end I decided to hand quilt and keep all three the same in that respect.
Imagine how perfect it was when Fiona, from WeSewCrazy Galway (who happens to be a twin mum like me, so we had loads to gas bag about when I collected the patches) came back with a little image of an Irish Dancing girl with RED hair and a YELLOW Irish Dancing dress........ just like Sonja had years ago.
The girls at WeSewCrazyGalway were sooooooo good and donated the patches for my quilt and I want them to know I really appreciated it so much!
So I delivered the quilts last week. It's been just over 3 months since the girls mum passed away and these quilts were meant as just a little reminder that they're surrounded by family and friends who love them very much.
|Sonja (Gardiner) Kubath with her big brother Alan, many years ago..... in that adorable yellow dress!|