From the mending pile


"From the mending pile" 
41" x 50"... ish, as it is finished as it was with no squaring up,
improv design,
up/re/cycled materials of denim, twill, stretch twill and denim
machine pieced and hand quilted in a long stitch fashion


These textiles originally came from some leftover scraps my mom had in her sewing room box. I realized they were bits of her old jeans and a bit of denim off cut from some she made herself.  I happened to look in my repair pile and I had a pair of worn out stretch denim leggings that I used to wear, a pair of Bugle Boy twill pants and a leg of work jean from my husband. In another pile I found a pair of stretch twill pants from my sister who always needs longer length in her pants. I am not sure if I was supposed to hem them and give them back to her or if they were just done but...they are in the quilt now. :) And, lastly another pair of twill pants I inherited from another sister. 
This accumulation is from 5 different mending piles.


So a fitting place for a photo shoot today? I think so. 

This piece is a UFO. I started it at least 3 years ago. I just was not sure how to finish it. It is heavy and bulking in places and stretchy and soft in others. When I opened up the bag it was housed in I put all bits on the wall and stopped when it looked like this. It sort of told me it was done. 

Then onto batting or no batting? backing? quilting?

I have only dabbled with long stitch before on simple projects so I had to decide what if anything would work on this piece.  I found some of my moms crochet cotton in a size 20 and thought it might work. About this same time I had signed up to follow along with Blair Stocker from Wise craft handmade HERE  She was doing a Boro qal on FB and I signed up to try it. When I was ready to start it I remembered I had this piece to finish. I read through her book anyway and followed along but I pretty much did my own thing on my own. (I still plan to make a Boro styled quilt someday)


I kind of went a bit overboard but the more I stitched the more I wanted to. I even gave in and used a thimble...well had to really in spots. ha
The little strip sets I decided to treat as patches and so I stitched various things in and around them. 
It was fun...really!!

The backing is an old fleece blanket.  Very soft but very stretchy. I first started stitching it without batting but the black threads in the plaid kept pulling through to the front. I finally gave in and found some old very thin polyester batting. It kept the weight out of the equation and provided a bit of a buffer from black fur.  I decided to face the whole thing with strips from leftover pants bits. You can see the hems I took out. 

This piece is packed with thoughts of my siblings, my husband and specifically my mom. She had always wanted me to hand quilt with her and though I tried and tried for tiny stitches I could never accomplish it. This was so much fun just to let go.  
I recently re-watched some of the series called Why Quilts Matter on PBS. The section on the quilts of Gees Bend is so inspiring. One lady interviewed said she didn't know if others thought her quilts were beautiful but they were beautiful to her.  Well.........
I am not sure if my  quilt is beautiful to anyone else but it is to me. 

linking up with Let's Bee Social
and
My Quilt Infatuation NTT

Comments

Debbie said…
This is really lovely and I enjoyed hearing about it!
Katy Sweigart said…
This is absolutely magnificent! I’ve been wanting to make something from my husbands old twill pants and jeans for a while now. Your quilting is perfect. I’d say this one is show worthy! Congrats on a fantastic finish!
Vasudha said…
This is such a special project. I've used my husband's cotton shirts to make a quilt but now I want to use the jeans and twill pants!
The construction and the quilting is awesome. Even better because it means so much to you.
Cheryl said…
I think it's beautiful!
I love your Mending Pile quilt!
Claire said…
Great way to train people not to ask you to mend something: put it in a quilt. I'll remember that one. When I see quilts made from jeans I regret all that I have passed on to second hand stores or trash.
Jen said…
It's beautiful! I'm proud of you for doing all that hand quilting. It looks great!
I absolutely love this work! Well done, Kris. I hope the memories bring you joy every time you look at it! And btw, I'm in Nebraska too. :) I found you via Lorna's linky party. I'll be back.

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