I finished removing the quilt top from the rest of the quilt this weekend. Saturday was a beautiful, bright sunny day and I thought it'd be perfect to shoot a picturesque shot of the quilt from the clothesline in the yard. Only the wind didn't get the memo. Oh well. One of the reasons you love me is my imperfect pictures, yes?
With the back & disintegrating binding removed, you can see where the quilt is shredded.
I thought that taking the back off would be the hardest part. But now that the quilt is ready to go, I realize that choosing the fabrics will be a challenge. I don't want to alter the character of the quilt too much, but considering blue is my least favorite color and blue seems to be the color most used in the quilt, that's going to be inevitable. When I was pulling fabric out to make a skirt, there was a sizable piece of red corduroy involved. Pat asked where it came from. I answered it probably came from Grandma's (his other grandmother) stash. Turns out it was a scrap from a blanket she made him, which makes it a natural to be utilized in the quilt repair project. After all, what's better to fix a quilt from his bed than a piece of an old blanket from his bed?
I have some other pieces of fabric I've pulled that I want to use, but as some triangles are one offs, there is opportunity to utilize many little scraps I've held onto. I suppose an assessment of exactly how many triangles I need is next, followed by rifling through my fabrics again. I think I'll be able to make new pieces out of the old backing, as parts of it are salvageable, which will also be nice. I've got a lovely linen for the new backing, so that the restored quilt will hopefully have the same light feel as the old quilt. I don't know that I'm going to re-quilt it the way it was - if I do, I'm not going to quilt through all the layers, but rather, attach the back separately. Although I've realized my new machine (it's three years old, you'd think I could stop calling it 'new') is capable of quilting it.
I'm a little overwhelmed at this stage of the project. I know I just need to take a deep breath and jump in. I plan on photographing each square before and after. There are some fabrics that are beyond repair, some that are so sweet, I want to see if I can't somehow salvage them. I suspect I'm about to do a good bit of reading on vintage fabrics and quilts. It's funny how a project starts out one thing - "Sure I can repair the quilt your grandmother made that you love" and leads you down roads you didn't imagine when you set out. I love a good adventure, don't you?
(If you haven't noticed, there's a new link on my sidebar for the new Facebook page for Chicken Wire and Paper Flowers. If you haven't liked me there yet, you should go do that right now. It'll be fun.)