It never ceases to amaze me how emotionally invested I become in projects without even knowing the people I am creating them for. This has never been more true than it was for my most recent project.
My client contacted me looking to have small wall hangings made for her niece and nephew of their mother's clothing. Their mother had recently died of lymphoma (see foundation info below). We based the design for each hanging off of one of the items listed in my Etsy shop but elaborated in order to incorporate as much clothing as possible. In addition, she sent me fabric photographs of the children with their mother to include and also requested a hand embroidered quote that her sister would say to her children at bedtime each night.
I sorted the clothing and decided which items to use in each hanging for the child's first initial, background, and border. It's amazing how many articles of clothing and memories are packed into each mini quilt. I truly hope that seeing these hanging on their walls each day will fill them with memories of happy times with their mother.
To honor the memory of this special woman, her family has created a foundation to raise money for causes that were close to her heart. I value many of these causes myself (education, arts, community) so I'm happy to share the link for any of you who are interested in supporting the Lisa Rego Horne Memorial Foundation. Or follow along on the Facebook page
This is a truly unique newborn baby gift because it's made for baby from mom and dad's meaningful clothing! In this case, the birds are made from wedding and bar mitzvah yarmulkes and the wings are textiles with shared importance to the couple like fabric from their first apartment together. The clothing bordering the birds is a combination of baby clothes, events, college and travel memories. The baby's gender is a surprise so I worked hard to keep it as gender neutral as possible.
I'm not the most organized type A person so usually when tasked with hosting a baby shower I grin and bear it. But everything changed when asked to help with my friend Samantha's shower. The mom to be was hoping to have a onesie decorating station where guests could craft and create tiny clothes for the newborn. I've seen this before with stencils and puffy paint and have always thought the results were less than desirable. There might be a few really cute ones but they'd be mixed in with a bunch of mess. I decided to do a few things differently for this gender neutral shower activity.
Samantha is a pretty holistic, all natural person. I thought it would look cute to have the clothes be different colors but I didn't want to use any harsh chemical dyes. I decided to try dyeing with natural ingredients like vegetables, fruits, and flowers. This site was a great resource. I basically turned our kitchen into a science lab and created dye after dye 24/7. I couldn't think of anything else and we ate really healthily that week so that I had a ton of onion skins and avocado pits to boil. The bright yellow - turmeric! How cool is that?
After the dyeing, I created a bunch of fabric applique shapes that people could adhere to the clothes. I also lined a bunch of fabric with adhesive paper so guests could create their own designs, which they did! This activity, both the prep, and the day of, was so much fun. Samantha is thrilled that her babe will be outfitted for his/her first year and now I don't have to cringe when asked to host a shower.
Some of my favorite quilts to make are quilts that will be gifted as a surprise. This giant, queen sized, quilt was just given as a college graduation present. It has approximately 50 (YES, 50!) t-shirts representing a ton of activities their son participated in since childhood. My client was hoping for the main colors to be red, white, and blue. Since so many of the shirts were white, I added red sashing, and blue binding. It's quilted with a flame pattern to represent his current passion, race car driving. I'm really pleased with the manly look we accomplished on this.
Thanks to the family for sharing this awesome photo of the big reveal.
WARNING: POST WILLL BE LOADED WITH PHOTOS. I CAN'T HELP MYSELF THIS TIME...
This was one of those projects that just spoke to me from the start. I was given a box of clothing that belonged to a very loved and missed grandma and grandpa. After carefully taking apart the clothes I divided them as equally as possible in order to make three separate quilts; one for each granddaughter. The designs were intricate and it took a long time but I'm so happy with the results. I hope these blankets will be cherished for a long time and will keep these families feeling even more connected to their past, especially since each one will be shared with the couple's great-grandchildren!
Grandmother & Grandfather's clothing
With just two months until the start of Camp Agawak's 2017 summer this tee-shirt quilt is headed to it's owner. Her shirts from many years of camp will be packed in her trunk this year BUT they will be in the form of a super cool, one of a kind, blanket! I really hope she enjoys sharing all of her favorite camp memories with her bunkmates.
Many years ago I was part of Agawak's "white team." I'm so excited for this quilt to make it to camp to spread some spirit .......GO BLUE AND WHITE!
I want to share a fun and meaningful project I just finished working on. My client held onto several of her grandmother's handmade clothes after she had passed, and wanted to have them made into four separate wall hangings for herself and three other family members. The clothes were pristine, and you could see the care and attention to detail that she put into each one, especially the decorative embroidery. I sketched out several design ideas for my client to choose from and then got to work.
My photography skills are lacking but at least you can get a sense of how they turned out. Each memory mini includes a piece of every original garment. I tried to include as much of the embroidery and hand stitching as I could. With some of the left over material, I created a modern dream catcher for two great granddaughters! The final picture was sent to me by my client after she had them framed. I'm thrilled with how they came out and hope they bring much joy and comfort to the family.
This quilt is so much more than just a "race car quilt" but that made for a cool title. Over 40 t-shirts (see last photo) make up this queen size quilt. It's going to be a college graduation gift for a guy who has been into so many exciting activities over the years, starting with gymnastics around age 7. Also included are snow skiing, volunteering, rock concerts, AND race car driving. My client asked for a "red, white, and blue palette" and I think this was accomplished by using red sashing and blue binding. I hope he loves it!
Items are still being added to the site but now you can check out some of the handmade goodies that were a result of my collaboration with Hiho Batik on their website. Click here or the pillow below to take a look
I'm so excited to write about a collaboration I have in the works with Hiho Batik. Robyn and Julia from Hiho Batik have given me some of their amazing t-shirts and other products to upcycle into new items. I've been busy tranforming their designs into throw pillows and pennant flag banners. Also (and maybe most favoritely) I've cut out shapes and patterns from the shirts to help revive pants and overalls that were otherwise most likely headed to landfills. These pants still have so much life left in them. They just needed a little love (and patching). Small holes or tears are now either reinforced, covered up with tshirt designs, or made to look cool in other ways through visible mending and embroidery. Each item is unique and handmade! Below are a few samples of what will be available for sale starting this weekend at Threes Brewing Holiday Market.
I'm Jenna; the owner of Memory Threads. I'll turn your meaningful clothing collection into a quilt full of sentiment and style.