Monday, August 27, 2018

Quilt #112: Lots of Love Wedding Quilt

They say good things come to those who wait. That's true not only for those who are on my quilt list, but also for so many of us wanting to find someone with whom to share our life. 

True story: Niels and I got married when I was 35. When we bought Niels' wedding band, we asked the jeweler to inscribe it with "worth the wait." At the time, I was a bit self-conscious about my weight because my new head meds had caused me to gain 50 pounds in pretty short period of time and I was struggling with the fact that I would be at my all time high weight for my wedding, with pictures that would be around forever. Can you see where this is going? Two days before our wedding, I picked up the ring and read the writing, "worth the weight." That was my only true bridezilla moment of wedding planning! The owner of the store was mortified and overnighted a new ring to us. All is well. 

My friend Jamie also waited longer than average to meet her Mr. Right. Their story is complicated and beautiful and theirs to tell. Jamie and I have been friends for nearly 20 years and was one of my first friendsd when I moved to Michigan in 1999. We worked together at not one, but two companies. When I brought my Shih Tzu Bailey home from Minneapolis, Jamie was there with a camera at the airport to take pictures and welcome us home. After my brain injury, Jamie remained a friend and loved me despite the changes to my personality. She definitely deserved a place on my quilt list!

As I thought about what kind of quilt to make Jamie (and Toben) for their wedding quilt, the thing that kept coming to mind is love. That sounds clique, I realize, for a wedding quilt, but the love I think of when I think of Jamie goes beyond the gooey wedding love. Jamie knows how to love when it's hard--when it's a friend whose life is changed by brain injury, when it's watching her brother fight and then fade away from cancer, when it's engaging with the kids of her friends and family even when she longs to have children of  her own, when it's speaking up for those on the margins. Jamie embodies love. 

For the third time, I used the wonky alphabet by Kelby Sews for my letters. I used her paper pieced alphabet on Papa Steve's It Is Well quilt.

And I used her love letters on my sister Liz's wedding quilt. (I modified the "E").

I don't usually tell someone I am making a quilt for them, because I rarely hit my deadlines, and because it's really fun for me to see if someone figures it out from progress posts on Instagram. But I did tell Jamie I would make her a wedding quilt and asked her what colors she would like me to use. She said she would want the quilt for their bed and that they were using beach colors. 

I started making blocks in between other projects a few months before they got married. This spring we went on a cruise and I was reminded of the beauty of the ocean. It also gave me the sew-jo I needed to finish Jamie's quilt!

I made the quilt top my April One Monthly Goal for Elm Street Quilts monthly challenge. I finished the top on their 1st anniversary. I put two surprises into the quilt that I didn't want to reveal before Jamie and Toben saw the quilt in person, so I had to be a little sneaky with my OMG update post

The first surprise is that one of the LOVE blocks was made in Michigan State colors in honor of her brother Tony.

Tony passed away a few months after their wedding after a brave battle with cancer. Jamie's first year of marriage has been bittersweet as her joy is mingled with grief. Tony's memory is near to Jamie's heart so I knew he needed to be a part of her quilt, too.

Tony at Jamie's wedding, with Jamie's husband Toben to the right. Photo Credit: Jamie Heim
The other surprise was a block made of rainbow prints. This block has  significance to both Jamie and Toben and also needed a place on their quilt. 


Cheers to you, Jamie & Toben. Here's wishing you many years of joy and lots of love!
Credit: Northern Exposure Photography
To see more pictures of this quilt, check the hashtag #lotsofloveweddingquilton Instagram. To see what I'm currently working on, please follow me at deJongDreamHouse.

My Quilt Infatuation FeatureFinished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts
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