Thursday, June 4, 2015

Wedding Collaborations

About 16 years ago, a friend of ours sent out an invitation asking each of us to make a quilt block for another friend who was getting married. She had picked out some beautiful fabrics and gave us some parameters for our blocks. The blocks could be done in any medium we chose, but needed to be finished to a certain size. I (Kara) had just begun to learn how to quilt so I was little nervous about what I was going to do, but the person we were making the quilt for was a good friend, and I figured she would forgive my quilting inadequacies.

Some of us got together to help Linda, the coordinator, put together the quilt. As the blocks came in, we all were amazed at the thoughtfulness behind each block. There were pieced blocks, cross-stitched, embroidered, and even painted ones. Many of the blocks needed to be brought up to the required size, so we added the coordinating fabrics to them. We ended up with 24 blocks that were all beautifully done, and each block contained a special thought for the couple. The quilt was backed and tied and then bound just in time for the wedding. It was decided that the quilt would be hung behind the cake table at the reception, and as far as we knew, the bride had no idea what we had been doing.
This lovely wedding ring block is a mini-quilt in itself!

It was a beautiful day and a beautiful wedding. It was a second marriage for the couple, and they were going to be blending their two families together making a new family of seven. All of us were thrilled for our friend and couldn't wait to see her and her new husband's face when they saw the quilt.

I will let her tell the rest of this story, because the quilt we made was for Teri!


Admittedly, much of that day was a happy blur, and I (Teri) remember having to be told several times to look at the quilt hanging behind the cake table. It just wasn't registering that this quilt was for us, made by so many of our friends. When we got home and had time to examine the quilt, we were overwhelmed by this act of love. We enjoyed the variety of blocks styles, reflecting so many different gifts and skills. Each block held a special meaning for us, with its own "message" from the maker—sometimes with embroidered words, and sometimes just in the design of the block.

Still, when I look at the quilt today, I am amazed. I had only just started to learn to quilt at that point, but I know that this gift had a huge part in pulling me into learning more. We have only shown a sampling of the blocks, but you can see the variety of talents in this quilt. While each block is unique and has its own story, they share one thing in common: they are a reflection of love. This quilt reminds us daily to cherish that love of friends.  And isn't that love part of the inherent beauty of a quilt? 

Do you have a story about a special quilt that you have made to give to someone, or that you have received? We'd love to hear your story!

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