Tag Archives: arts

The Great T-Shirt Memory Quilt Challenge – Weeks Four and Five

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

I am beginning to wonder if I started my niece’s T-shirt quilt too early. Since she is not graduating until May I don’t feel the pressure that usually makes me productive. Blogging about this project has helped me start sewing again and has brought me face to face with unfinished projects. Instead of setting them aside I have been completing them as I clear my sewing area.

Finally turning away from these distractions I spent time reading the book How to Make a Too Cool T-Shirt Quilt. Deciding I was never going to learn enough to be comfortable I started cutting up T-shirts. Stressful! With so many different sized blocks in this quilt, numbers have been whirling in my head day and night. And some anxiety. What if I get the dimensions wrong? What if I make an error cutting a shirt? All this uncertainty caused me to flee the project every day after only a few minutes of work.

Today, I decided it was time to get serious and relied on a tried and true companion for times of angst. I cranked up some good old rock and roll and got busy. About 20 minutes into my cutting, just when my tension was reaching a peak, Three Dog Night came on the internet station with Shambala.

Wash away my troubles, wash away my pain
With the rain in Shambala
Wash away my sorrow, wash away my shame
With the rain in Shambala
Ah, ooh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

I put down my rotary cutter and danced around the room expelling negative energy and releasing some healthy endorphins. Luckily, no one was home so I could groove with abandon. With my mood improved I returned to the cutting table with energy. Hallelujah!

While not finished cutting, I am more than halfway done and gaining confidence with each cut. So my accomplishments for weeks 4 and 5 of the great T-Shirt Memory Quilt challenge are:
  1. I read the book How to Make a Too Cool T-Shirt Quilt by Andrea T. Funk.
  2. I finished sewing a hat and vest for my granddaughter.
  3. I cut 18 blocks for my T-shirt quilt.
  4. I am arranging the blocks on the family room floor…hope nobody wants to use that room.
  5. Pohey is a stressful project. Since I can only handle so much stress Pohey remains on the To Do list. (Don’t worry Brie… I am blogging about Pohey so I will have to eventually finish repairing your baby quilt.)
If you want to keep up with my weekly progress, see Week OneWeek Two and Week Three.

The Great T-Shirt Memory Quilt Challenge – Week Three

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

I don’t know if you ever saw the Disney Pixar movie UP, but I definitely relate with Dug the dog. He is distractible and so am I. Dug will notice a squirrel and all thought flies from his mind as he turns and shouts “Squirrel!”

Every time I start working on the quilt something catches my attention and all of a sudden I am doing something else. I went to the fabric store early in the week to purchase Pellon #906F fusible interfacing. A wonderful clerk talked me into purchasing french fuse interfacing. “Squirrel!” So… instead of spending $9 for my Pellon interfacing I spent $17.99 for French Fuse. I sure hope it is a better performer.

I brought my interfacing home and went right to work. As I was removing an unfinished project from my sewing table I was drawn to my sewing machine and before I knew it, I was sewing something that had sat dormant for 8 long months. “Squirrel!”

This past weekend I completed the unfinished project, a rag centerpiece quilt. Today I gifted it to a friend for her birthday.

I returned to work on the memory quilt. After pondering the project for a few moments I decided I need a little more help so I went on the web to my local library and requested the book How to Make a Too Cool T-Shirt Quilt by Andrea T. Funk. “Squirrel!”

The next day I stopped at the library and checked out the book. It is not due until November 16th, so I have some time yet to figure out what in the heck I am doing!

So my accomplishments for week 3 of the great T-Shirt Memory Quilt challenge are:
  1. I purchased 2 yards of French Fuse interfacing from a very engaging clerk.
  2. I have borrowed the book How to Make a Too Cool T-Shirt Quilt by Andrea T. Funk from my local library.
  3. I finished a rag centerpiece quilt.
  4. Sadly, Pohey remains in the bin for at least another week.

If you want to keep up with my weekly progress, see Week One and Week Two.


To make this rag quilt centerpiece:

  1. Cut two 10-inch blocks of fabric and one 9-inch blocks of cotton batting (for the center square)
  2. Cut twenty-four 5 1/2-inch blocks of fabric and twelve 4 1/2 inch blocks of batting (for the small squares)
  3. Center a square of batting between two squares of a matching cotton print (wrong sides together)
  4. Top stitch an “X” on each block going from corner to corner, creating 1 large and 12 small squares
  5. Arrange squares into a pleasing design
  6. Sew the blocks together into strips with a 1/2″ seam allowance
  7. Sew each strip together with 1/2″ seams
  8. To create the rag effect, snip each seam at 1/2” intervals to within 1/8” of all seams being careful not cut into the stitching
  9. Bind edge with a binding (Heather Bailey’s Quilt Binding Directions are wonderful)

To rag your quilt, wash the quilt in warm water and detergent. It is important to shake the quilt before drying to shake off loose strings. Dry, with no dryer sheet, making sure to clean the lint trap once or twice during drying. Once dry, repeat with a second wash and dry this time with dryer sheets. Remember to clean the lint trap half way through.