Several years ago I worked full time as a manager at a fabrics and crafts store. I worked there for six years and during those six years I purchased a lot of stuff! I probably have enough fabric and scrapbooking supplies accumulated to open my own fabric and crafts store. When I retired, I always planned on using that stuff; after all, now I had all this "free time" to spend in the craft room. But of course, the hours I thought I would have to spend in my craft room everyday was more like one or two hours a day. Between cleaning, gardening, traveling, and home upkeep/remodel projects I really didn't have as much "free time" as I thought I would.
Years went by and I felt so guilty about all these unfinished projects gathering dust in my craft room. I felt so overwhelmed by it all, that the joy of creating was taken away from me. I finally realized I felt overwhelmed because the task was too big, and to make it less overwhelming, I just needed to make my goals smaller and more manageable. At that time I had three quilts that I started but never finished. I decided to make it my goal that I would finish one quilt per year. I started with the simplest quilt of them all, and the one I had the most further along: a T-Shirt Quilt.
Many years ago my daughter gave me all these T-shirts of her husbands. They are all T-shirts of plays and dances my son-in-law was in when he was in high school and college. The T-shirts are packed full of memories, some have the date on them. The fabric on some of the shirts was so old it was fragile; but once you iron on the interfacing it makes the fabric much stronger and stops it from stretching.
My T-Shirt quilt is a little different from most for it has traditional quilting borders. Most are just T-shirt blocks connected together like THIS ONE. That would be the easiest and quickest T-Shirt quilt to make.
I had a lot of T-shirts that had small graphics, so I cut them up to even smaller squares to make one block. I put this block right in the center since it was so different from all the other blocks. I love that my children's names are on these blocks. My son-in-laws name is in the upper left corner and my daughter's name is in the lower right corner. Isn't that awesome? What a memory keepsake!
Now if you are a seamstress, you will probably notice how horrible my sewing is. I will be the first to admit I'm a horrible quilter. I so much more enjoy the process of designing a quilt than sewing one. The mathematical precision of quilting drives me crazy. I often thought I should stop trying to do traditional quilting and just do "Crazy Quilting". I think that would be more my style.
Regardless of my imperfect sewing, I'm proud of myself for FINALLY completing my project; and I did it all myself! I even finished it myself with the "Stitch in the Ditch" method instead of paying a professional several hundred dollars to top stitch it.
T-Shirt quilts are a great way to preserve memories. I've been collecting T-Shirts from every place we ever traveled too, and someday I hope to make a travel T-Shirt for myself. I've also seen people use T-Shirts of sports teams or music concerts. Oh, the memories you can save on a T-Shirt Quilt!
Have A Great Day! Amy
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