Friday, March 15, 2013

Putting things together...


Today I rushed through my housework in order to spend time in my sewing room assembling some projects that have been on the go for a while.
Last year I shared HERE about the sudden passing of my dearly loved friend, Pam.
She left behind two teen sons, and two small daughters. After the initial shock I asked her husband if I could have some of her clothes to make memory quilts for the little girls. A couple of months later a box arrived at my door.
You know, I didn't realise at the time just how the grief I thought had lessened, would rear up so quickly at the sight of that box and leave me shattered and raw again. 
The box sat unopened in my sewing room for two whole months.I would look at it, feel a tightening in my heart, and know I still could not face what was inside.
When I finally did open the box, I sat on the floor and piece by piece held Pam's skirts and shirts close to my heart and cried. Minutes later, the clothes bundled back into the box, I knew I still could not cut into any of them.
Another month passed before I decided it was time to wash the clothes, and once that was done, back into the box they went. I felt so guilty about this long delay in making the memory quilts, but I simply couldn't progress any faster. Grief kept taking over.
We moved house in January, and it was later that month before I opened the box once more, and this time I gathered strength and cut as much usable fabric as I could from the dozen articles inside. Then, you guessed it, back into the box the pieces went.
Each step has been a process toward healing, and I thank God for the gentleness with which He leads me forward. The other day I objectively looked over the fabrics I'd cut from the clothing.
Pam's clothes are not 'bright' or happy colours, so I really hit a brick wall in how to make pretty quilts for the two girls. Then, in a dream the other night the Lord showed me to use the fabrics for the quilt backings...the girls could have pretty quilt tops with my own fabrics, yet with Pam's clothing making up the back of the quilts these two cherubs would be "wrapped in their mummy". 
So today I made one of the quilt tops...

...and tomorrow I will make the other. 
Once they are done, I'll open the box again, make two quilt backs, and finish the promise. It's the right time, and my heart is ready.
This week I have been stitching a new Christmas design.
Last year I did a small redwork stitchery for my e-zine, and I loved it so much that I have re-worked it into a larger project in pastel green and salmon, with extra detail and additional blocks...
Honestly, I just love it!
I started with these blocks today...
...and an hour later had the wall hanging pieced and ready to be hand quilted!






This should be all finished tomorrow, then it's time to write the pattern - which should be in stores next month. Nothing like an early start to Christmas stitching, right?!

Thanks for listening today.
{{{hugs}}}

God bless you lots and lots!


30 comments:

Annette B said...

I love love it

cq4fun said...

Your stitching looks so perfect. If I stitch another 30 years, mine won't look so nice. Don't think that keeps me from stitching, though. =) I love your expanded pattern, and my heart was touched by your story of quilts for Pam's children. I find the Lord sends me answers while I'm sleeping, too. Sometimes for spiritual things, sometimes for temporal things, but it's all the same thing, to Him.

Jilly said...

Hi Jenny, you are such a precious friend; I pray God blesses you beyond measure and strengthens you as you go in the journey! What a blessing for these dear little girls to be given a quilt made out of clothing that their Mama wore! I am sure that each time they wrap themselves in them they will feel close to her and you!

The quilt you have posted here is so pretty; it is just adorable!
{{{hugs&prayers}}}
Jilly oxoxo

Silvia LGD (Little Green Doll) said...

Your new Christmas design is so beautiful!! and the stitching is so well done! Hugs

Thoeria said...

Dear Jenny...Reading your tribute to your friend had me sitting with tears in my eyes....what a beautiful gift your are giving your friend's little girls. You're righ, they'll always have their Mummy wrapped around them xx

retdairyqueen said...

I made a Memory quilt from my daughters clothing, finishing it two years after her passing
The quilt gives me so much comfort but does not take away the hurt
The little girls will tresure their quilts
My quilt is on my blog

shez said...

lovely work jenny.xx

Vickie said...

Blessed are the cherubs who will receive quilts made with so much heart...hugss

Vickie said...


OH yeah AND when I grow up I want to be able to sew stitches just like yours..sew (pun intended) neat and fine just gorgeous...cheers Vickie

Luxury Villa Rentals said...

It's looking amazing thank you very much for the sharing and I would like to ask after how much time you made it?

Annerose said...

Hallo Jenny, wunderschön und so schön gestrickt. Ich bin begeistert.
Liebe Grüße Annerose

Carrie P. said...

what a great idea for the quilts from your friends clothes. I know the kids will love them.
I just love your colored version of the partridge. Your works is perfection.

Capi said...

After my children's grandmother died, I made pillows for each of her grandchildren from one of her favorite shirts and the hospital gown she was wearing when she died. I used her notes to them in their birthday cards to add their names and her signature to the pillows in her "handwriting," embroidered in backstitch. Those little pillows (hearts for the girls, rectangles for the boys) were healing for me and for them. Bless you for doing this for the children of your friend.

Colleen's Blog Long Island NY said...

Hi Jenny, I thought you might be interested to know that there is an urban legend about The Partridge in a Pear Tree. You can find it at
http://urbanlegends.about.com/od/christmaslore/a/12_days_of_christmas_meaning.htm

MissesStitches said...

Jenny, the leaves on your pear tree are awesome! Good work on Pam's quilts. You'll get there.

quiltercaroline said...

Hi Jenny. Thank you for todays blogpost that has touch a nerve with me - I lost my partner nearly three years ago and promised his mum that I would make a memory quilt from some of his tshirts. I haven't even had them out of the bag they are in. The thought of making the quilt was too much for me, but maybe I can manage to just get them down and have a sort through, if I need to put them away after that then ok, I would have made a start. I am glad that you are able to work on your quilts now and that this means that some healing has gone on for you. I also love the partridge wallhanging. GB C x

Maria Rosalia said...

Good afternoon...
I love your pears tree...and the music...what a lovely little patch...
Thanks for everything
Hugs
Maria Rosalia

Alice said...

Such a beautiful idea for Pam's girls. Your heart is so huge, you are a role model for us all. I love your new spin on the redwork. I look forward to when the pattern comes out.
L,A-

Lynn B said...

Hi Jenny,

The post about your friend really made me cry, how sad and yet so thoughtful of you to make memory quilts.
I love your recent stitching, every stitch is so perfect, I think it is the most perfect stitching I have ever seen!

Pippas quilts said...

'Hugs'

Jenny of Elefantz said...

I made the design over 10 days, Luxury Villas.

Hugs
Jenny

margaret said...

those two little girls will treasure your quilt I know, your story has really touched me, thank you for sharing what you have been through.
The pear tree another delight

quiltendeb said...

Really am crazy about your new Christmas pattern. Your leaves are exquisite . Are the directions on your website or will it come with the patterns

Jenny of Elefantz said...

quiltendeb, the stitchery guide will be in the pattern. :-)

Sue from Cyprus said...

Dearest Jenny
You are such a wonderful, thoughtful person. You truly are God's vessel. It's so hard to deal with grief, some would say almost impossible. You have turned that grief into thoughtfulness and generosity. Pam's family will be overwhelmed with your courage of turning something that Pam wore into a quilt. Your strength comes from God alone, Jenny!
Also, I love your Christmas stitching! It's awesome!
Hugs, Sue from Cyprus xxxx

sslydon said...

Susanne in California here! Another BEAUTIFUL story and love this idea of you making quilts out of your friends clothing. YOUR a blessing to us all and THANK YOU for writing your blog. I also love this new wall hanging you have made with the Pear tree, LOVELY ~ LOVELY work! Your an inspiration! THANK YOU~

Farm Quilter said...

Bless you for making memory quilts for these two little girls. They will be cherished forever!!! You hit upon the perfect solution for using the fabric and they will love being wrapped in Mummy! Amazing how God uses you to help heal someone else and heals you at the same time - we do have an awesome God!!!

Anne from Georgia said...

Jenny, I concur with previous comments on how perfect your stitching is on the leaves!
What a precious, priceless gift for those little girls and what an awesome idea God gave you in your dream. I love the idea of them being wrapped in their mommy's love.When my Dad died 10 yrs ago, I took all of his plaid shirts that my sisters and I had given him over the years with the idea to make memory quilts for them and my Mom. I remember how raw the feelings were the first time I opened up the box. This summer I actually made some progress with some sewing and the idea I would like to give them on the anniv. date. But life got in the way and they are back in the box for now.
Anne

Michelle May-The Raspberry Rabbits said...

Oh my gosh that is just so gorgeous!

Carla said...

So precious and the stitching is awesome.
I should have done that for my friend's grand daughter she was raising. My friend passed 2 years ago. I still get emotional on the anniversary of her death so I can understand.

'Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.'
~ From a Headstone in Ireland