Wednesday, November 30, 2011

H & L's Wedding Quilt

My cousin H got married recently. H and I (and my brother and her sister) pretty much grew up together. She's awesome. One of those people that lights up a room the second she walks in. Knowing that H & L love homemade gifts, and that they met in an environmental education program, I wanted to make them a wedding quilt using all (or mostly) fabric from my stash.

A friend of mine once made a crossword baby quilt, and knowing that H and L both love puzzles, I had to steal the idea. I envisioned a traditional looking crossword puzzle, brightened up with a colorful border or orange and green (their favorite colors). The quilt came out even better than I pictured it in my head!

I read through H & L's wedding website, paying particular attention to the "how we met" stories to pull words for the crossword puzzle. Then plugged them into an online crossword generator to get the layout. I had to tweak the layout a little bit to make it fit into the size I wanted, but for the most part, I let the computer do all the work.

The vast majority of the fabric was pulled from my stash (though I had very little orange, so I had to buy some of that). I thought that having the main field completely black would be a little too much, so I scattered in some white-on-black prints to break it up a bit. I think it was able to keep the feel I was going for, without it being too dark.

Because it was all squares, this quilt was very easy to strip-piece. The puzzle is made up for 2.5" squares, while the border is 5" squares. The letters were appliqued using fusible interfacing. I found a font a liked and printed out an alphabet the right size to trace onto the fusible. I adhered the fusible to the black fabric, cut out the letters, then ironed them on. Finally, I finished them off with a zig-zag stitch along the edges.

When I found this orange fabric with trees on it, I knew it was the perfect backing fabric for this quilt. H & L love nature and the outdoors, so I wanted to incorporate that into the quilt. The green trees brought that element of nature, and the orange allowed me to keep it with the color scheme of the quilt.

I knew that this quilt was an ambitious project, especially with a newborn in the house. So to make it a little less insane, I opted to tie the quilt, instead of stitch it. I found some orange and green embroidery floss in my stash and tied it up. I like the little bits of color the floss adds against the black background.

With a simple, black binding, this is a quilt I can be proud of!

I asked H & L to open the gift at the wedding, because I wanted to see their reaction.

First peek at the quilt

Taking it all in

H & L loved the quilt. And I LOVED making it for them. I hope it will be well loved and well used throughout their marriage. Congratulations H & L!!!


  1. It's great! I'm glad you decided to make one! I didn't know that there was an online crossword generator-- I just used David :) The backing fabric is perfect for the rest of the quilt.

  2. This is beyond fabulous, Sara. I'm so glad I found your blog, via your mother. Will forward it to H&L. I know they will want to see this! It is an act of love and your write-up made me cry. With love, H's mother.

  3. My mother just sent me to this blog-- so cool to hear the story of the quilt! It's amazing! We love it. Thanks again for the very thoughtful gift and especially for joining us at the wedding (with sick newborn in tow!)