Something to share! A beautiful quilt story...

Lynette contacted me about a year ago to have one of her quilts finished by me. I am always honored to work on customer quilts and this one was no different.  It's funny, someone left a comment on my sneak peek of this quilt and mentioned that Kay was quilting this exact same quilt.  I couldn't believe it!! At first I was a little nervous about that thought. It is always heart wrenching to think that two quilting jobs could be compared to each other, especially when it is the same quilt.  But, then I realized that each quilter has his or her own style and how awesome it would be to own two of the same quilts, but quilted completely different. So, I asked Lynette to tell me the story of her quilts and I had to share her thoughts with you.  It really is a beautiful quilt story - please read it.  Then, you can look at the pictures!  So, I give you Dragonfly - Party 1. 


Here's what Lynette said -  
"Dragonfly Party 1 comes from a special private block-of-the-month quilt project that
my cousin and I started doing together. Kelly was 3 years older than I, and we
reconnected with each other around 2007 when we both got on Facebook. She lived in
Orem, Utah, and I was in Florida. We became daily companions, each with our
computers staying online throughout the workday (she was an at-home mother with her
youngest a teen, I was working at home) so we could interact easily. We both loved
quilting and came up with the scheme in 2009 to do a twins-quilts BOM project
through the mail with each other. The intention was that we'd each decide on a
project and do it in double, keeping one block and mailing the other. At the end of
the year, we'd each have two twin quilts with each other - one of our choice and one
of the other's choice.

Kelly chose the Joseph Smith tribute BOM by Nancy Nielson and Joylyn Rigy, which I
later found out she'd been super nervous about because I'm not LDS like her, and I'm
not nearly as much of a Thimbleberries type. I was looking for something with upbeat
colors and a mix of traditional and modern blocks. So I cobbled together 12 blocks
that I loved or had meaning (like the Johnny-'Round-the-Corner block, as my husband
was almost finished with a long deployment to Afghanistan and would be home that
month in our program). Some of the blocks are tried and true standby patterns,
others came from the Quilter's Cache blog ( I designed
the setting in EQ6, wanting large alternate blocks for quilting potential. I'm not
sure what possessed me to include 1/4" sashing, but it called to me, so I put it in
there. The name came from the fun dragonfly fabric I found to use for the outer
border and focal pieces in many of the blocks. The color scheme was pulled from
stash and fat quarters to play off that fabric. It wasn't intentionally created to
call to mind Mardigras, but living on the Florida panhandle at that time, that's
what most folks who saw the project thought of. lol!

We were maybe 6 months into our game with each other when Kelly passed away. Way too
young! I think she was 46 at the time. But she'd been having problems due to her
cardiomyopathy, and fell to a series of strokes caused by complications. I was
devastated. It was like losing a beloved sister. When I went out for her funeral, I
rescued every project I could find in her sewing room and stash and have slowly been
working on those. I found her storage bins and fabrics for her Joseph Smith BOM, and
the blocks of Dragonfly Party that I'd sent out to her.

I couldn't touch any of it until I decided to use the skills of master-longarmers to
nudge me into finishing my Dragonfly tops. So I got on your Green Fairy wait list
and started working my way through those. I finished them last summer after our move
to Colorado. They were nice, poignant companions in our interim apartment while we
looked for a real home to buy. I decided I wanted to keep both of the tops, and that
it might be nice to have the work of two longarmers to be a set together. So I put
Dragonfly Party 2 on Kay's Borderline Quilter wait list - another longarmer whose
work I had long admired, had absolute faith in giving cart blanch, and would more
likely than not look terrific as a set with your quilting. Neither one of you let me
down. They both take my breath away even before I have them back in my hands!

The funny thing is that I placed these tops at very different times on two separate
wait lists with very different rates of moving and two quilters in very different
life stages affecting their available working hours. And yet, with no attempt at
coordinating, you each finished quilting the tops within a work week of each other!
Blog friend Em would call that a God Wink, for sure! And with these two quilts so
amazingly quilted, it takes all the sting out of the time I spend working on Kelly's
Joseph Smith blocks to finish those quilts for her, so that it's only a nice stroll
through memories of her and a labor of love for her family.

 Okay, me again -
Oh my word, I can not read through her story without crying.  I think what I love most about quilting is the beautiful stories of love and friendship that develop and our hobbies become more than just a hobby.  So beautiful!  So, on to the quilting story - my part.  I was a little stumped at first.  The big yellow empty spaces are always a challenge to design first, so I started on the borders.  This small four patch pictured above was the result of a little playing around and it ended up being the inspiration for my whole quilting job.  I kept thinking about this being a tile that could fit in all the yellow background squares.

As I quilted I realized that I should make this quilting tile a progressive size.  So, the first yellow spaces - top and bottom of the quilt are 2 inch squares.  Yes, there was a ton of marking on this quilt.

The borders are awesome, this was a result of the square I quilted at first that gave me inspirations for the tile blocks.  The diamond shape is also used throughout the quilt.

Each block is quilted differently, I used a gold thread for the colors in the blocks, a white thread for all the white areas and a golden yellow for the solid yellow blocks. 

I so love this quilt block.  It turned out awesome. 

Lynette's piecing ability is amazing, AMAZING!  Seriously, I could not quilt this straight without a straight quilt, I am so impressed with her piecing skills. 

All the quilting designs within the blocks are a result of just playing around with my marker and straight ruler.

A favorite!  Love this one.

And this one too, it's so hard to pick which ones to share!

So, this yellow block is the center row of the quilt and I quilted 4 inch squares and here is where the diamond design from the border is pulled into the quilt.

This is the second and fourth rows with 3 inch squares and a smaller diamond.  I love the progressive size design on the quilt.  This was my first time trying that design method. I love how it turned out.

The fabric in the borders have dragonflies in them, so it is only appropriate that I put in a couple of dragonflies.  I planned on quilting more than two dragonflies, but in the end decided that 2 were enough for the quilt.  Not knowing the story of this quilt before made it more neat because I think of the two dragonflies as Kelly and Lynette.

The back!  Love!

I never tire of quilt texture.

 Thanks for reading!  I hope you enjoyed this quilt story as well as the pictures of my quilting.  
April 26, 2013 by Judi
Tags: Quilting
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