Monday, September 19, 2011

The Quilting Confessions #3: In the spirit of Charlie Brown

Today is the 3rd installment in what I hope to become a regular feature: The Quilting Confessions.  I want stories from you about really bad mess ups you've made when quilting or things you'd be embarrassed to admit at a guild meeting.  The idea is that everyone makes mistakes and hopefully we can learn from each other and be less self conscious about our quilting mistakes.  I remember once I saw a major screw up in a quilt at a quilt shop and it make me feel so relieved that awesome quilters had screw ups, definitely inspired me to keep trying.  If you're new, Part 1 is here and Part 2 (my first quilt) is here.  If you'd like to be featured, just email me your story (if you don't  have a blog, that's ok, too!) and I would be happy to feature you for us all to laugh at with.

So a long time ago, I made my first twin size quilt.  Wal-mart fabric, poly batting.  I had a dream.  A dream to make a Charlie Brown quilt.  Here is said quilt.  I've made the photo Xtra Large so you can see it better. 

I was sooo proud of myself.  I ignored the fact that aesthetically, the zigzag was too tiny.  I ignored the loops on the underside of the quilting.  I miscalculated backing and had to piece some UGLY fabric  with my character fabric.  I had HUGE puckers from sewing the long seams to the zigzag.  The walmart fabric faded within a few washes. 

As my skills grew, my pride turned to shame.  I could sew better now.  I bought better materials now.  I hated looking at this quilt.  I knew I must remake the CB quilt at some point so I did.  I even did a quilt along of this quilt (the pattern is still there in my sidebar if you're interested...I mean a whopping 2 people finished...and I think one was me!)

And as well crafted as this was, I put the directional backing on upside down.  DOH!

And then I made this:

I made a big ol' vintage checkerboard quilt for my oldest son's bed to replace the CB quilt.  Tons of vintage fabrics.  Awesomely awesome.  I loved it.  I admired it.  I was so glad to be rid of that old ratty Charlie Brown quilt.  I hid it in my closet and hoped my son would enjoy his new quilt...and he did.  The other night, I heard "mom, what do I have to do to earn back my Charlie Brown Quilt???"  
Just like the real Charlie Brown, my first CB quilt might have been a born loser, but he was easy to love and he made my son happy.  So you know, I dragged out the old quilt and put on his bed with the new quilt.  I won't be ashamed of it any more (even when he gets his American Jane Fairy Tale Friends quilt that I'm working on).

It's easy to think of those first quilts you made when you first fell in love with quilting and be embarrassed at how they look now.  I cringe to think of a few baby quilts I made in my early days.  But you know, the people who get those quilts love them and are kept warm by them just the same.  If you've made 100 quilts, don't be embarrassed about the ones you could do better now and just shove them into the closet.  If you've never made your first, don't be worried that someone will think it looks probably will...but it will still keep them warm and show them you love them, and that's the whole point, right?

To enter your own quilting confession, email me at marylane_brown at yahoo dot com.  If you've previously blogged it, send me a link.  If not, send me a regular old email.


  1. I love this story! I still have my first quilt but it is unfinished! How sad is that! It was all hand done and I got stuck at the final border because it was a directional fabric and I didn't know how to cut that, plus it was a long strip that I had to figure out how to add a 1/4 of an inch for sewing. Hahaha I just might have to pull that out now and finish it finally! Thanks for the inspiration!!

  2. My first quilt is still in tubs and this past Christmas I started cutting it apart and resewing it into smaller pieces. I'm even thinking of repainting my dining room to use it as placemats or a table runner.

  3. Poor little guy, he thought he was being punished and lost his quilt!

    I'm not far enough into my quilting career to badmouth my early quilts yet. :)

  4. Aww, love that your son wanted the original back. Children get oddly attached to things, and don't like change, although I did have a successful resurrection of a bear recently for a colleague to give to his son. When the colleague was little, he'd thrown the poor bear over the fireguard (he thought it was a game) and his plastic eyes and nose had melted. Poor sightless, non-odour detecting bear was then hauled around until many of his seams were hanging on by a thread. He went to live in a box in the loft until my colleague and his family moved recently. His 3 yeard old spied the bear and wanted him immediately, but my colleague grabbed him back quickly, and brought him in to see what I could do. When handed back, complete with reinforced seams, new eyes and a new nose, my colleague said, 'Look, he has eyes now!' only to hear the reply, 'Don't be silly daddy, he always had eyes'. My colleague figured telling his son that the last time the bear had eyes, he was his son's age might blow his little mind, so he left it at that lol.

  5. I still have the Charlie brown quilt. My problem was thinking I could have the time to stitch a ton of designs to fill the other side. UGh. Right now it's a flimsy :)


Thank you for taking the time to comment!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...