The Great T-Shirt Memory Quilt Challenge – Week One

The challenge: To construct a T-shirt memory quilt for my niece
for her high school graduation

My niece is graduating in May 2012 and I promised I would transform her t-shirts and jerseys into a memory quilt. I am a chronic project starter/non-finisher so I am blogging about my weekly progress to keep myself accountable. I know I can make the quilt. I am unclear if I can actually complete it.

Why you ask? Another niece gave me her very much loved baby quilt a few years ago to mend. Pohey, the quilt’s name, arrived in tatters and pieces which I painstakingly tried to reconstruct. It was precision work and stressful. The other day I opened a bin and her partially repaired quilt stared back at me. I slammed the lid shut and said to myself, “I thought I had finished that!” Oh the guilt.

And now I start another project. Week one of the great t-shirt memory quilt challenge did not start auspiciously. I opened the box of my niece’s shirts and quickly became overwhelmed by the number and variety of choices. Pressing on I pulled out one neatly folded shirt after another and tried to envision a quilt design. I spent five minutes going through the first few layers then stepped back and looked at the mess.

I am pretty sure I felt a small popping in my brain similar to a circuit overload. I crammed the shirts back into the box, closed the lid and moved the box into a closet. Out of site, out of mind. I then left the house and went for a walk. I was in big trouble. I couldn’t even make it through the initial sorting of shirts. After pondering my initial reaction, I realized I needed to find out what my niece liked and did not like before I could envision what to do with the 42 shirts in the box.

I saw my niece this weekend and forced her to look at images of t-shirt quilts on the web. She showed me four designs she liked and I feel I will be able to make something similar. I am hoping that I will have the will and find a way to make this quilt.

So my accomplishments for week 1 of the great t-shirt memory challenge are:

  1. I have a pile of shirts in a box in a closet.
  2. I have an idea of the type of quilt my niece would like.
  3. Pohey is still in the bin wondering when I will return to finish it and set it free.

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6 thoughts on “The Great T-Shirt Memory Quilt Challenge – Week One”

  1. When I was teaching and had a big project to complete, I would break it down into smaller parts. Then as you complete a part, you are not thinking of all you still have to do.

    Keep us posted and we’ll cheer you on. Remember, you can do this and most people couldn’t!

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