Wednesday, April 13, 2011

So, What's the Story behind this quilt?

The day of revealing "The Quilt" is now over for those following me on Facebook, and I made it but just barely though!  The quilt it now all bound and looks wonder, if I do say so!

You  maybe wondering if there is any meaning/story behind this quilt I have been working so hard on for the past two weeks, and actually there is a lot of meaning in it.  Some things came to me as I went along; somethings with a whole of meaning. 

You best go get a coffee/adult beverage - go head... I'll wait for you!

On June 3rd, our little town hosts a Relay for Life, where we walk for 12 hours (7pm - 7am) as a fund raiser for Cancer (see here for more info

Did you know there were this many ribbons?
Why is this quilt so scrappy?  A saying in a quilters world is, "if life hands your scraps - make a quilt", but that is not the reason LOL   Many of you remember I was trying to bust my scraps (as well as working on UFO's) this year and decided I would start there.  At first I started cutting the colors that represented the different types of cancer. Did you know there were that many colors for cancer?  For the most part that was going well... but it wasn't what I had in mind. 

Fabrics for the young and old
Actually I still wasn't sure at this point.  So I started cutting other fabrics; all kinds of different fabrics, and as I was cutting them I started to think of what they would represent.  What they would represent?  Since when did I make quilts that actually have a meaning for being made?  Sheesh!  I just make quilts because I like the process or how they look, why am I stepping out of my comfort zone now??  So I kept, cutting, cutting and cutting some more.  So why did I add all the different fabrics?  Well, one, you know is for the ribbons, but there are two other reasons.  The different prints represent the people effected by cancer; the young and the old, as cancer has no preference who it attacks.  And two, there are so many pieces as it represents the number of people affected cancer... oh so many people!

Friendship block with star quilting
Then came time for the borders.  Oh, boy!  What am I going to do here?  Well, as I pieced all the little pieces I kept thinking of what to do and came up with this block.  The name of the block is called the "Friendship Block" and thought it very fitting for it to be the final round to wrap up all the strips representing people.  Everyone needs friendship, no matter who they are but more so when going through the trials that cancer can dish out to a person and/or the family  to handle.  The blue background represents the dawn of a new day.  "Everything looks better in the morning" as the saying goes.

Of course you haven't seen the center of the quilt yet!!  I'm coming to that.

7 stars for luck
As I had done this all in sections, there was some heavy thinking going on.  

Okay, no jokes from the peanut gallery!!  ;-)  

And of course the bout with vertigo really put a stop to it all, hence my so tight deadline to finish up this past week.  I did get it all figured out, as well as the quilting!  That was the real stopper in all this!  Again, I thought of stars.
One of these for each team entered
  Do you think I like stars?  I think everyone does!  I like to think that the stars are our loved ones looking down on us and keeping us safe.  So there are seven of these on the center of the quilt.  Seven being a number of good luck.  There are also going to be some hand stitched stars too!!  Those stars represent the number of teams that are registered for the 12 hour walk.  As of writing this there are .... 46!!!  That is totally amazing!   There are at least 10 to a team so that would be at least 460 people.  That is more than the population in our little town!!!  Truly AMAZING!

Radiant Star
Now there is one big star radiating down over the center of the quilt.  It represents faith from heaven above.  For those not religious, it represents the love of family and friends radiating over them.

A dove represents Hope
The very center is a dove representing the Spirit of Hope.  In it's mouth it carries a lavender colored ribbon.  Lavender is the color that represents all types of cancer.  Did you know that?   This is one part of the quilt that I knew straight from the get-go as to what it was going to be.  What I didn't know was how I was going to quilt it, but that came to me after a long day of sewing things up just as I got into bed.  Really...that is when it all came to being; I only hoped that I would remember it in the morning as I was way past tired to even write it down.  I just wanted some sleep.

Spirit of Hope
How could I come up with such a representation for this quilt?  It was actually very easy for me.  My best friend was diagnosed with cancer in June 2005.  So there is a lot of thought of my friend when this quilt was being made.  When I had finished quilting the center panel I laid it out and then tears came to my eyes.  I had actually captured what I wanted!!   As well, this quilt would not have been made possible without the help of my hubby.  He looked after getting the meals made and making sure I ate, answering the phone, laundry ... yes he was a huge help.  Even if he wouldn't help me with 12 hours of ripping out one section that I didn't like the quilting on!  All of my waking hours for almost one full week went into this quilt.  He is my "Martha" and I'm so very thankful for that.  Thank you and I love you, Ches!!

So now you have the story behind my quilt.  Thank you to my Facebook friends for following along with me and my MashUp crew for keeping me going when I was putting in those long days.

Oh, sorry!!! 

My best friend?  She is alive and well; had two more little ones since given her all clear and is as much of a joy to me today as the day she was born.
She is my daughter ... love you bunches, Laurie xx/oo

Laurie & me

May the Spirit of Hope touch your lives,
as it so graciously has touched mine.

For those wanting to make a pledge for this walk - search for Shirley Jobson, thank you!

Hugs to all,


  1. A beautiful story Shirley. You are a very special lady and I am proud to call you my friend.
    Lucy :)

  2. Thank you for posting your journey with us!!

  3. Truly a labor of love!! Beautiful quilt, beautiful daughter, and beautiful loving you. xo

  4. pretty amazing, creative, inspiring,loving,awsome work !

  5. Oh, Shirley, my Sloanie friend, your story brought a tug at my heart and tears in my eyes. GF, you need to change your avatar. Your pic with the DD is beautiful. See ya at Camp Sloanie!

  6. Such a beautiful quilt and thanks for sharing the story! You are an amazing and awesome person...and such an inspiration on your blog, at flickr and on the mashup forum! I totally love the photo of you and your makes me smile!

  7. Shirley, the story made me tear up and the photo of you and your daughter made me smile. Thank you so much for sharing your quilt, your story and your humor with us. So glad I 'met' you on the forum.

  8. Beautiful, Shirley! Thanks for showing your great quilting up close. Such a tribute to your family and yourself. You are a bright star for many of us:)

  9. Thank you all for the wonderful comments! ♥

  10. Your story touched my heart. Cancer is an evil beast and has touched my life and taken away special people and given others a rough ride. Your quilt is beautiful.
    Wiping the tears from eyes as I write.

  11. Thank you for sharing your story. I love quilts with a story behind them. Good luck on your Design Star Challenge!


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