May 25, 2008

Wedding memory quilts

There is something timeless and sentimental about a quilt, and quilts can be a great way to capture memories from a wedding. I've made two wedding quilts. A bit of how-to:

Bridal Shower Quilt:
--The bride decided on her favorite quilt colors. I selected light-colored fabrics in a variety of solid and subtle cotton prints and used a rotary cutter and cutting mat to trim the fabrics into large squares.
--At the bridal shower, each guest was given a fabric square and a selection of permanent fabric markers. Participants were asked to write a message to the couple on the squares-- well wishes, words of wisdom, etc... Guests were asked to leave a one-inch blank border around the edge of the fabric square for a seam allowance.
--After the shower, I sewed the squares into a simple patchwork quilt. To add graphic interest I also included a few appliqued quilt squares.
--The end result was great. The couple married in 2002 and still have the quilt, which includes messages from their closest relatives and friends.

Wedding Chuppah:
--After hearing about the bridal shower quilt that I'd made, I was asked to make a chuppah for a friend's wedding. A chuppah is a canopy under which a Jewish wedding takes place. The photo on the right is an example of one used at an outdoor wedding (from 'paperandthreads').
--Large cream-colored cotton quilt squares (cut to 10x10 inches) were mailed out to 30 of the couple's close friends and family. Each person was asked to decorate a quilt square with some kind of memory for the couple, and then mail them back. Participants were asked to leave a blank one-inch border around the square for a seam allowance, so I didn't sew into their designs.
--The completed quilt squares were beautiful! Each one was an individual work of art, some serious, some silly. The squares included handwritten messages, iron-on photos, embroidery, etc....
--I sewed the squares into a patchwork quilt and added a border around the outside edge of the quilt. At each corner of the quilt I added a buttonhole.
--To make the quilt into a chuppah, I purchased thick wooden dowels (approximately 1 1/2 inches in diameter) and cut them to an appropriate height. At the top of each dowel I screwed in large metal rings. The chuppah was attached to the wooden poles with ribbons that tied through the button holes and the metal rings. The poles were decorated with flowers and vines for the ceremony.
--At the wedding ceremony, the couple married under this special chuppah, filled with well-wishes from many of their wedding guests. The chuppah is in their wedding photos and is a lasting memory of their wedding and the good wishes people had for them as they embarked on their marriage.


KM Stitchery said...


Can you add me to the member blogs?



Shirley said...

Hi Joanne,
I'm the artist who made the chuppah in the photo. So nice to see it used as an example. You might have seen that there were a total of 3 - all silk and quilted - one for each of my children's weddings. You should have also included a photo of the one that you made.

Joanne said...

Shirley-- glad you saw this! I wish I could include photos of the quilts I made but I did them pre-digital-camera and didn't want to bother my friends with the blog. One of these days I ought to photograph the quilts!
You've made some beautiful chuppahs, Shirley!

Rhonda said...

Wow, what beautiful work you do.

paul said...

Agreed - just beautiful. Great work!

Joanne said...

The quilt in the photo is Shirley's, just to clarify. Unfortunately I don't have any digital photos of the ones I made!