Monday, January 18, 2010

Design Wall Monday #3

Since I finished a quilt last week (click here to see it), I figured I can start something new this week! Well, actually I would have started this quilt no matter what happened last week, but it sounds better if I tell you I finished one, doesn't it ?!?!?
Here are the blocks on my design wall today...


I teach a quilting class at my local senior's centre, comprised mostly of beginning quilters. Last year one of the students asked me if I could teach her how to make a quilt from her deceased husband's clothing. I had been thinking about that and searching the internet, and found a pattern called "7 Shirts Quilt" - click here to see it.
Once I received permission from designer Nancy to teach her design to the class, I started looking for some shirts at the thrift stores. I found 7 useable shirts but was not happy with the price I paid for them...it wasn't much of a deal compared to buying yardage, and it takes a heck of a lot of time to prepare the shirts - cutting off the cuffs, collars, seams, pockets, buttons, etc.
The first thing I did was wash the shirts and even though they were all used and previously washed, I tossed a "Color Catcher" in with the shirts just to be on the safe side.  I first heard about Color Catchers from Nicole over at Sister's Choice blog (click here) but was unable to find any in my local stores. I finally found them at a store near my sister's home in Michigan and have been using them regularly to wash new fabric.
I was surprised to see how much dye was absorbed by the sheet from these plaid shirts. Here is a new sheet to compare to the one that was washed with the plaid shirts.
Here are the dismantled pieces of the shirts ready to sew. I have the large pieces of sleeves and backs to sew into a backing, the strips for the nine patch blocks, a few smaller strips ready for binding (on the left) and on the right are the pockets which I wanted to save and will maybe use as cornerstones in the outside border.
What's on your design wall today? Want some inspiration? Hop over to Design Wall Monday at  Judy's blog...last week there were 64 quilters who showed their latest projects!

16 comments:

  1. I just make a shirt quilt and I just cut them up while watching tv at night. I am going to be on the lookout for more shirts. I paid $1-1.50 for mine and I decided that I won't pay more than that.

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  2. Looks great! I had liked the one Nancy had made and your looks fabulous too! You work fast.

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  3. Kathy - What a wonderful project. I'm going to see if our local senior center would offer a sewing project like this. I'd like to lead it. Thanks for the inspiration.

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  4. Great project! I have a bucket of shirts I've cut up too~ just need a little time to play. ;-)

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  5. I have several white shirts to cut up that DH has worn out. I think I could get plenty just from his worn out collared ones to make a fun quilt. Striping will take the most time. Stripping you could do a Lone Star too. Nine patches work up so fast...

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  6. Those are really great looking blocks. Have you started teaching the class? How are the ladies responding to it?

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  7. Great job of recycling. I'm trying not to get shirts until I use the demin I've been collecting for years. Your blocks are pretty.

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  8. Nice selection of shirts. I too buy shirts for the yardage. Last one I took apart I weighed to figure out the yardage....I'll be blogging it soon.(the paper is upstairs and I'm too lazy to go get it.) so I might be able to figure out how much a yard I paid for it. Loved your finished quilt.

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  9. What a great idea for leftover shirts. Last year I made pillows from shirts: I added embroidery to personalize them. All my family (21) got a pillow for their birthdays. Now I can look at shirts in a different way.

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  10. Hi Kathy, I think buying shirts isn't much of a deal compared to buying yardage because fabric is kinda cheap in America (compared to the prizes in the Netherlands, where I live).

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  11. That is going to be great. I love plaids and shirtings. Can't wait to see the finished product.

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  12. Hey Kathy----yeah I did Nancy's Seven Shirts quilt too. In fact, it's still hanging on my wall in flimsey stage.... :0)

    And I agree--amazing that so much dye still existed in those used shirts...
    Happy Tuesday

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  13. How fun! We're both working on Nine Patches. The only clothing I've used for quilts are T-shirts and Jeans. Not sure I want to join the shirt craze!

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  14. Hi Kathy, I like shirt plaids. The only problem is shirts are between $5-$8 at the thrift shops here. Luckily we have dumpsters and each one has a free giveaway where people just dump the stuff they no longer want..lots of clothes. I score for free there. LOL I also got tired of using scissors......so I dug out my ancient electric scissors. To darn old so I went and bought a pair of Black and Decker, around $20 and they work wonderful. I don't have the fabric blade so I just angle them upwards and it works great.
    Jen
    AK

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  15. Ah, this pattern is on my list of quilts to piece this year. I too have been shocked at the price of shirts in the local thrift stores, so I have been contacting relatives and begging for old shirts. At least a few have promised to send me some. (My favorite price is free!) Anyway, that an option people might look into.

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  16. How are you so organized? I'd love to cut up all my fabric in keep it in such neat piles. Maybe I should plan to photograph it so I train myself to stack it. Love the shirt idea.

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