Some time ago, while I was anxiously awaiting the arrival of my fat quarters from the Vintage Sheet Swap that I participated in, I started to sketch some ideas for the first project that I would attempt with them. It has been a long time since I have used my sewing machine, and I have never done any machine quilting, so I wanted the first project to be small in order for me to become comfortable with the technique. That said, I didn’t really want to make a mini quilt, since I don’t much see the point of them. I wanted to make something useful. So I determined that I would make some pillow shams for my 26″ square “european” pillows.
I had also been wanting to try the Crazy Nine-Patch from Oh, Fransson’s tutorial, since I had seen some really wonderful quilts made with vintage sheets and that technique (like this one and this one).
I have been swapping fabrics in and out of this matrix for two weeks. I really should have taken a picture with each swap…it would have made a fascinating mosaic! The combination on the right is the FINAL attempt to pick 9 fabrics…who knew it could be so hard! I decided that I really wanted to retain the bright colours that I used in my original sketch, and the example on the left just seemed a tad muted. Also, I really wanted every fabric be a floral of some sort, and the green plaid was the right colour but the wrong pattern.
Of course, by the time I came to cut my 8″ squares, I just couldn’t bring myself to cut into the two as-yet-unharmed sheets. I can still see myself using them as sheets. So I swapped in two others from my collection. I did have some scraps that were the same as the sheet that was centre-right, it’s just a bit faded. I’ve decided that it doesn’t matter.
In the spirit of the project, which is made entirely of vintage sheets, I am using this sheet for the sashing, border, and pillow back. This sheet is from the set of white sheets at our family cottage. I was up there a few weeks ago for our annual work weekend (building that new bathroom), and I found it while sorting out the disaster that is the linen closet. There is still lots of useful fabric here, so I brought it home.
The sheet was manufactured by a Canadian company called Dominion Textile, for their brand Tex-Made. I think I remember seeing on a tag from another sheet that the company was located in Montreal. It has been washed so many times that it feels like flannel. It’s just so soft!
So far I’ve done nine blocks, finished and squared up to 6.5″. Once the sashing is on, they’ll be 6″ squares. I have nine more to go in order to have enough for two matching shams. I can’t wait to see them finished!