This particular quilt came to mention when blogging about the mini mini Sandra sent me, and I thought I would tell the complete story.
A few years ago, in the summer of 1999 to be precise, my 9 year old daughter and I went for a walk. Weirdly I remember it was a Wednesday afternoon. A flock of geese flew over us, Canadian or otherwise, and I told my daughter they were geese from Canada, and they were flying either south, or north for the winter. Anyhow, they were flying overhead, in a v shape and doing a lot of squawking. I explained how they flew in that formation to ease their passage through the air currents. The leader broke the wind current, and it made it easier for the others to follow, they could cruise along the current easier. I also claimed with great authority, that the geese take it in turns to be leader, to share the burden.
I explained that patchwork blocks have names and usually represent something. There is a block called flying geese, and until June of this year they had always defeated me.
I am a good mother like that, educate whilst having fun. I have no idea as to the science of all this, but it sounded good.
When we came home she asked me if I could sew her a cushion with the flying geese block. I remember then my heart sank. Now, 17 years later I could so do that! Then this cushion changed to a sewn picture with the geese flying overhead in the sky and us out for a walk down below. This I could actually have had a stab at. Once my sons heard about this, they wanted to be included in this picture too. Around about that time I had seen a book on photo quilts and promptly bought it. Any excuse to buy a book!
By this stage the picture had grown in the planning to a full size wall quilt depicting our family over the years. The children had great fun sorting out their favourite photos. These were duly photo transferred onto Ulster Linen and framed with fabric. In keeping with the original applique idea, I made a couple of applique pictures.
My husband then thought it needed a little je ne sais quoi. Except he did knew exactly what it needed. Some embroidery just to finish it off. He had recently read Captain Corelli's Mandolin and had been very taken by one particular phrase.
"When being in love subsides you have to work out if your roots have so entwined that you will never part"
Thankfully our roots have entwined.
He also came up with the idea that it would become our Millennium quilt. Little bit of pressure there in the tail end of 1999 to get it finished for 1 January 2000.
This was duly embroidered in running stitch in brown embroidery floss. I tried chain stitch but it was too bulky. Now I would use cotton perle and possibly a split stitch. I have a fancy to try embroidery again.
My daughter, as youngest children tend to, especially girls, told the boys they could look but when I'm dead it passes on to her! Mind you she also divided my teapot collection between the three of them at that stage. Somehow I doubt my sons will be looking for teapots!
I'm sorry the photos aren't great, unfortunately it is hard to get far away enough in our hall for a decent photo. We should have bought the stately home instead.
And now another chance to the see the lovely mini mini Sandra sent me with the Canadian Flying Geese, front and back.
linking up with Jenn www.quarterinchfromtheedge Throwback Thursday