Inspiring Quilters, Stitch by Stitch
My daughters, Jamie and Becky, have insisted I have a thing for chickens ever since the 2013 - Year of the Christmas Quilt project (see prior blog posts for details) and yes, I did make two chicken quilts that year and yes, this is my THIRD chicken quilt but, damn it, the fabric is just so darn cute! How can I resist chickens with knit Christmas scarves and knit hats balancing Christmas presents on their backs? It just screams: Make me into a quilt!
So I am.
Second granddaughter, Sylvia, who is now four and will be five by the time this is finished, will be the recipient of this quilt and it's title is "The Fox in the Christmas Hen House." I started this quilt two years ago when I was having my fifth knee replacement. Yes, I did say fifth. I was bored with the whole process and stuck at home AGAIN for six weeks so I decided to teach myself how to paper piece quilt blocks. I wrote a blog about the experience so you can look it up. Needless to say, I did not find the paper piecing fun. I made the fox and the rooster block and put it all in a basket for another day, made several other quilts and then finally after Christmas this year, pulled it out again. I was not going to let paper piecing get the best of me. The second weekend in January, I sat down with purpose and cranked out ten chickens. Later that week I added a dog (every barnyard needs one although this one doesn't look too tough or too bright) and an eleventh chicken for the hayloft. Here they are. Note: they will all eventually have button eyes. I just did a few right now to get the idea of how they would look.
I confess I am an anti-social quilter. I belong to four quilt groups but they are all on-line. I rationalize it this way. If I belong to a quilt group where the members actually MEET each other in real time and space, that is less time for actual quilting, right? With my on-line groups, I can meet up with them any ole time I want, in the middle of the night when I have insomnia, for instance. No time wasted. So, I have been posting this quilt as it progresses on the four on-line groups and have gotten the most kind and positive reactions but also a few weird ones too.
Some folks think the dog should be in the hen house and the fox out, otherwise he is not doing his job (see prior comment about intelligence level of said pooch). Other don't get the dog at all and think he should be evicted or at best, on the back of the quilt. The one that takes the cake, however is the quilter who lost 12 actual real life chickens to a fox this past year and is very upset there is a fox in the hen house and on the quilt at all. I keep having to repeat, "the name of the quilt is THE FOX IN THE CHRISTMAS HEN HOUSE. In the hen house. And these are not real chickens. No actual chickens were injured in making this quilt."
I do feel some compassion for the poor quilter short a dozen of her fine feathered friends. I am a bit crazy about my cats after all and from what I am learning about chicken owners, they do love their birds.
So now that the hard part (the paper piecing and the block placement) is done, I am on to the pinwheel blocks that will make up the rest of the body and border of the quilt. Here is the center so far and a close up of the blockwork.
The pinwheels measure 3 inches finished and there are only a gazillion left to make. I still have to figure out something wild for the back of the quilt - maybe paper pieced Vinnie and Julie, my two cats, whom Sylvia always asks me about when we facetime, Vinnie more than Julie for some reason. At any rate, she is gonna love this quilt!
Happy quilting and watch out for that cunning fox!
Ginnie (aka Gramma Gigi)