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Saturday, 4 August 2012

Wherever I Lay My Hat - Surprise Project I Revealed

Since May, I've been telling you all that I've been working on two surprise projects and I'm finally able to share them with you. I've been so excited for so long.

So here goes with Surprise Project I - this is a quilt that I've called 'Wherever I Lay My Hat' and is a gift to my eldest son, Jack, on his graduation - BSc (Hons) French. It's taken him four years, Years 1, 2 & 4 at Aston University in Birmingham, England and Year 3 he lived and worked in Paris. I loved visiting him in Birmingham but our time spent in Paris with him, being treated like a local rather than as an English tourist was very special and we have wonderful memories to share.


Before the ceremony, we gave Jack the quilt, his graduation gift from us, and he also received a generous cheque from Gran that will allow him to study for his CELTA Cambridge qualification in Seville this September.


The Graduation Ceremony was held at Birmingham Town Hall and afterwards, we were all taken on buses back to a champagne reception at Aston University.  It was a very enjoyable afternoon and the day was finished off with Gran treating us and our friends CB and JW to a fab evening meal at Pushkar Indian restaurant on Broad Street.  Jack, Flicky and JW then went clubbing in Birmingham whilst Simon, Gran and I went back to our very welcome beds :) .


and here're more photos of the quilt itself - which Jack loved so much he carried it to his graduation ceremony with him :)


I took my inspiration for the quilt from 3 fabric maps of London, Paris and New York - representing all the countries that have been 'home' to Jack during his degree.  I built the fabrics up using 2 English themed print designs of crowns and Big Ben's clock face, 2 French themed prints of Parisian images and advertising alongside some French song lyrics and then 2 prints of the New York skyline.  I interspersed these with a handful of other non-themed prints and solids in 3 horizontal bands for the quilt front and I repeated each fabric across the quilt back also.  Across the lower front left, I machine embroidered Jack's name, degree and study dates.

The quilting is alternating through horizontal and vertical on each fabric design and the 3 maps have diagonal quilting that turns back within each triangular section rather than crossing at the centre.  The quilt border has parallel quilting intersecting at each corner.

I named the quilt 'Wherever I Lay My Hat' from the extended saying ... that's my home ... as that is exactly how I think of my eldest son, who from the day he was born has been my little adventurer and explorer, always keen to learn more about everyone, everything and everywhere.  Now he's not so little and his adventures take him further and further. I hope his thirst for life continues and his time in Seville, and wherever life takes him after that, is successful and exciting, as well as everything he's hoping it will be and more. x

Related Posts:
An Actor's Life For Me - Surprise Project II Revealed


Disclaimer:
This post is for informational purposes only, no payment or commission is received on click-throughs and opinions are my own.



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40 comments:

  1. Your post brought tears to my eyes. That's a VERY special quilt and one that I'm sure will be treasured for a lifetime!!! Beautiful!!!

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    1. Thanks Pam, I get teary every time I read it back myself! :)

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  2. What a cool quilt - congratulations on it and on the accomplishment that inspired its making!

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    1. Thanks Cynthia, this was such an easy quilt to pull together - once I came across the maps then the rest just fell into place :)

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  3. Beautiful quilt! Glad it is well loved!

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    1. Thanks Rachel, the quilt has already made its way back from England to NYC for a month and I have no doubt it will then be jetting off to Seville with JA - I think it will be a very well loved and well travelled quilt! :)

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  4. Congratulations to JA and good luck in Seville! Hope you'll get to go and visit :)) I have to admit I cried a little reading the story, is that allowed? :) The quilt looks beautiful and you made it so special! Hope He'll cherish it, I certainly liked the part where you wrote that he carried it with him to the ceremony... I love the straight line quilting, it looks perfect with the quilt. Thanks for sharing the story AND the pictures, they're awesome!

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    1. Thanks Kati, I hope tears are allowed as I keep welling up! Can't believe he carried it around with him all day - that really touched me. This is my favourite quilting design that I've done, I could run my hands over the close parallel stitching all day as it feels so good! :)

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    2. I don't blame you at all... It looks gorgeous!

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  5. Oh fantastic quilt - that is so lovely. Love the photos of your son with them - clearly he knows how to appreciate a good quilt!

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    1. Thanks - he spent ages studying the quilt and asking lots and lots of questions, it was very rewarding and special :)

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  6. Another lovely quilt! Best wishes to JA, especially his upcoming studying -- and I hope he has a wonderful time in Seville!

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    1. Thanks Alisa, if I know JA he'll do his best to enjoy himself and make the most of his time there! :)

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  7. Nice quilt! Nothing like a quilt for a special occasion.

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    1. Thanks again Patricia, quilts are great for all occasions :)

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  8. Popping over from plum and June. You must be so proud of him and his achievements. I love the quilt you gave him and the fact that he carried it to graduation with him. It is a beautiful piece of art.

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    1. thanks Kimberly for your kind words :)

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  9. You have made the most beautiful quilt for the special occasion! Lovely post, thank you for sharing your unique moments!

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  10. Beautiful quilt! I love the meaning behind it. Congratulations on his graduation and his further studies.

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  11. What a beautiful quilt with such meaning! Congratulations to your son and thanks for sharing.
    Quilting at the River Linky Party Tuesday

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    1. Thanks Connie, I had a lot of fun putting it together for him :)

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  12. What a special quilt! Full of meaning and great looks too :)

    Thanks for linking up with TGIFF!

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  13. I love the inspiration for this quilt - it's beautiful! Nice graduation pics as well.

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  14. The sweetest mama ever! That quilt is so full of LIFE and your son looked very proud to be holding it in his very own hands!! Congratulations to all that your son has achieved and will achieve in the future!

    Where did you ever get the fabric anyhow? Very curious to know. The straight lines all close together are so wonderful and it shows the time and effort and great love that went into it all.

    Blessings!

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    1. Thank you that's so kind of you to say :) The map fabric is from Muji and the rest of the fabrics were from my local quilt fabric store, The City Quilter in Manhattan :)

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  15. Such a great quilt! And such a terrific young man! Congratulations to him!

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  16. Fantastic! I just loved reading all about your son and the background and meaning behind this quilt. Such a labor of love, and obviously he felt it. You must be one proud mama!

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    1. I really am Heather. Thank you for your lovely comment :)

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  17. What a great story! And he took it to graduation - wow (tearing up too)...

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    1. It was so lovely for me when he took the quilt with him Janet, he said he wanted all his friends to see it :)

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  18. I have to say that It's the quilt we use the most at home. That Jack really loves it and care about it. He is very proud of it, He always shows it to everyone when he has the chance, if not, I do it :)
    It's a very special post from an amazing mother to a very loved son.

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    1. Only just spotted your comment Ana! Do you think our new baby will love the quilt too? We'll have to make sure between us that he has many quilts of his own to carry xxx :D

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  19. You caught the exact reasons and emotions of why I quilt!! I can not think of a better compliment than him showing it off so proudly. You've raised a genuine young man.

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    1. Thanks Val, we're so proud of him and his new little family :D

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Chris Dodsley