I say “Yes!”

‘Let your “Yes” be yes, and your “No,” no.’
James 5:12b 

I have been on a hiatus because I gave a resounding ‘Yes!” to family, friends and work commitments during the past few weeks. I am living what I preach to my children. When you say “yes”, give your whole self to the person or project, holding nothing back. If you can’t, then you need to say ‘no’.

During the past weeks, I finished sewing and delivered the great t-shirt memory quilt (see notes below) to my niece for her graduation from high school.

I traveled back to North Dakota to be present for another niece’s graduation open house. Then… I survived the end of my school work year, a recall election in Wisconsin, moving our son to a new home, our granddaughter turning two, and many retirements and support for dear friends.

This past weekend I came to the end of my commitments. On Saturday night, I walked out of my sister’s home and saw this view from her front porch

I held my hands up to the sky and rejoiced. Then, I called to my family so they could share this awesome spectacle. Beautiful.

When life gets busy, I carve time in nature for comfort. A long walk. Sitting outside to soak up the sounds of wind, water and wildlife. Time to kneel down, give thanks and garden.

I am so thankful. I am so blessed.


So, how did I make the T-Shirt Quilt?

  1. To make this full size quilt, you need between 35 to 45 t-shirts
  2. I went to the public library and checked out the book How To Make a Too Cool T-Shirt Quilt. I also visited the authors website. The book has a few template examples as well as providing directions for designing your own. I went with a ready-made template that was in the book. I took a picture of the template with my iPad and referred to it multiple times as I was making the quilt.
  3. I cut out my blocks (4- 16 1/2 by 16 1/2; 8- 16 1/2 by 12 1/2; 3- 16 1/2 by 8 1/2; 4- 12 1/2 by 16 1/2; 7- 12 1/2 by 12 1/2; 2- 8 1/2 by 8 1/2; 1- 8 1/2 by 12 1/2; 2- 8 1/2 by 4 1/2; and 7- 4 1/2 by 4 1/2)
  4. I arranged my blocks until I found a color combination that was pleasing, then I took a picture of my arrangement with my iPad so I wouldn’t forget my layout.
  5. I purchased French Fuse to back each t-shirt section to reduce stretching. I cut and ironed the fuse onto each block.
  6. I sewed the blocks together following a diagram from the How To Make a Too Cool T-Shirt Quilt book.
  7. I purchased a flat twin size sheet (red), cotton batting and basted my quilt top, batting and backing together.
  8. I machine quilted around each individual block. It was a little tricky. In addition to the basting, I pinned each section as I sewed.
  9. I made a binding from scrap material I had on hand and bound the edges.
  10. Then I whip stitched the binding to the back as I watched many old movies.

For more information on how I started this project, see my blog posts for the Great T-Shirt Memory Quilt Challenge Week OneWeek Two,  Week Three and Weeks Four and Five.  After week five, I took a break (for many, many months) and when I started it again, I didn’t blog about it until I this post. Happy sewing.


18 thoughts on “I say “Yes!””

  1. We all must take time away now and again. I love this idea and have saved all of my son’s jerseys and t-shirts with the intention of making such a quilt. Thing is, I don’t quilt. I don’t sew, I don’t block, I don’t do any needlework. So explain to me please, why I have the intent if the ability doesn’t match up. Maybe someday….In the meantime. Welcome back to the ether. We’re still here, frozen in place. And we’ve just learned a valuable lesson from you. Bravo.

    1. I think you will be able to take those shirts and t-shirts and make them into a quilt someday. I taught myself to sew with will, determination and much use of a seam ripper ;)

    2. Renee, I saved fabric from about 60 hand smocked dresses and outfits that I made for my kids when they were little, thinking I would make a quilt some day. And last year I realized I would never do that. I don’t quilt either, and I gave up smocking when they got too big to wear those types of garments (you know, the classic Southern Easter look!…Christmas, birthdays, first day of school…lots of fabric!) So I gave all the fabric and my smocking supplies to a friend who does all of that. I felt so LIBERATED! I told myself I had other talents to share with them, and so I do! And so do you, if you choose not to learn to quilt!
      ~ Sheila

  2. Good for you to have taken some time to do these important things….I know just how you feel! I frequently let my blog sit for a while, waiting until I can focus on it, recognizing that my life and the commitments I’ve made are important (at least to me!). I need to participate in my life, not just comment on it in my blog.

      1. Well, I sometimes feel self-absorbed, being the main character in my blog. Good way to put it! I haven’t really thought about it from a novel/story/book point of view, but there are times when my blog is at least my personal journal. So maybe it’s ok that I’m the main character! Thanks for the perspective! ~ Sheila

  3. The quilt turned out so good…I remember when you started it. I know your niece will treasure it! What a stunning photo of the sky.


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