I’m so very late posting this, both because this quilt was a gift to my grandma LAST CHRISTMAS & because today is the last day to link up to Amy’s Bloggers’ Quilt Festival. So, here it is – my very first entry to the BQF – this is My Family Tree.
There is actually quite a lot to tell about this quilt, but I will leave most of it for a separate post (or set of posts, since I took photos of various steps throughout the process). The ‘finished’ quilt was delivered at our annual family Christmas gathering last year. I quote ‘finished’ because there were 32 names last Christmas (including my grandpa & one cousin who are no longer with us). But since then, I have already added four new names to the tree. We had two weddings & two births this year!! And we already have two new babies on the horizon for spring! I decided to use fabric marker for the writing, specifically because I wanted to be able to add names as our family grows, without having the new ones look out of place.
My grandparents had six children. So I gave each child his/her own branch. The rest of us (grandkids, spouses & great-grandkids) are all written into the leaves.
In the design phase, I very briefly considered a more traditional representation, with lines (branches) connecting people to their spouses and children. But I threw that idea out for two main reasons. One, some of our branches are a lot larger than others, and it would be difficult to make the quilt tree look well balanced. Two, I have no idea what the future will hold for our family. And I wanted to be able to add names, without having to cram them into a predefined space for each family branch. So I chose to add names where they seemed to fit well, without stressing too much about placement.
My favorite part is the heart. I ♥ the heart. It is reverse applique, but I did this before I’d ever heard of reverse applique. I just really wanted it to look like the heart was carved into the tree, so that’s what I came up with.
I think my grandma’s favorite part is the banner at the bottom.
So that is my Family Tree quilt. It now lives on a chair in the entry way to my grandma’s living room. I think she keeps it with the banner out, so people can read it as they come by. This quilt is the largest I’ve made so far, even though it is only about 4 x 6 feet. It was the most work, the longest design phase & the most satisfying when completed.
If you haven’t checked out all the other quilts from the BQF participants, please head over to Amy’s now and have a look. There are a ton of very wonderful and inspiring quilts being showcased there!