I thought about pretending this was a belated birthday present but actually the fabric was purchased in September with the thought that it would make a lovely Christmas present. Probably a bit cheeky to pretend it’s for his birthday then!
I have been feeling guilty that Duncan was given three baby quilts and a single bed sized one from various immediate family members (including me) and Fraser has just one quilt and one knitted blanket (which I spent hours and hours on so perhaps I shouldn’t feel so guilty). But Cory’s very sensitive to the second-brother, second-hand trap and I also want Fraser to have lovely things to carry through to adulthood. Becasue of the machine quilting I’m not sure this is heirloom quality but it’s lovely now and will hopefully make sure that he feels special. Plus the superstitious side of me likes the idea of my kids sleeping under quilts I’ve lovingly made them.
The fabric is actually shirting fabric from MacCulloch & Wallis. I struggled to find any checked prints to use for a boy quilt – I wanted it to avoid flowers and be more linear – and ended up finding exactly what I wanted in shirting. It was a bit difficult to work with as it has more of a sheen and frays much more easily (especially as it’s woven rather than a printed pattern) so I tried to handle the fabric as little as possible and assembled the quilt top in two sessions. Shirting fabric is also cheaper and slightly wider than quilt fabric – another plus. The back is a heavier fabric which I think the machine struggled with but will add extra warmth for Fraser who’s always on the cold side. I went with machine stippling rather than hand quilting to make sure the shirting wouldn’t fray and pull apart with the 1/4 inch seams – but it did break my heart a wee bit (and then almost my thumb….)
The blocks are each 13 3/4 inches square – which is what happens when I make up patterns to fit the size of the backing fabric and went together very quickly with a rotary cutter. I love the idea of carefully assembling blocks piece-by-treasured-piece but I like finishing projects a bit more. I was under a bit of a time limit too as we’re getting a new kitchen installed in a few weeks time and since it’ll involve taking down walls I’ll be without space to sew for at least a month. And I had to complete this within the year as the boys are already asking for bunk beds for their birthdays next year and this was only ever meant to be a cotbed sized quilt!
I’ve finally time to work on Fraser’s quilt but it got a wee bit exciting this afternoon. Fortunately my thumb has only a small hole where the needle went in (and out). I’m wondering if it hit a bone with a glancing blow. It’s sore, but fine.
Happy Birthday to our super Fraser, three years old! I love how much you’ve grown up this year. At dinner I said “I can’t believe you’re three” and then I realized that I was just saying that because I felt like I was supposed to. It does feel like you’re three; your maturity and skills have advanced so much in the past few months.
But while all three year olds are three, only you are you and you like:
- riding your bike at the park
- camping with all of us
- family hugs
- nanny Kirsty
- Dr Who
- coffee (steamed milk)
- racing water (from Daddy’s camelback)
- being outside
- getting your tears wiped away
- hugs and cuddles
- yoga bugs, library story time, and playgroup
- your friends
- sleeping with so many stuffed toys there’s hardly room for your head
- tees with homemade applique
- swimming with Kirsty not Mummy and Daddy
- going for coffee to a cafe
- cucumber, sausages, wheatabix, and ham sandwiches
- being with us (thank you)
Actually there’s a lot of things that haven’t changed in a year, but a lot that have. You’ve friends now, other kids your age that you want to play with and genuinely like. You are independent and confident, ready for nursery in August, and say Duncan’s your best friend. You don’t want me to crawl into bed with you any more, probably because you’re so big that you fill up most of your toddler bed and I end up lying on your legs. I miss crawling in with you at bedtime for a snuggle – but you’ve also turned into a much better sleeper and that’s not to be sniffed at.
And thank you to everyone for the wonderful birthday gifts for Fraser! As you can see in the photos he’s a happy boy – and his scar isn’t too bad after all!
It was warm on Thursday and Friday, honest! But this weekend the temperature has fallen from 25 degrees back down to 10; requiring hot chocolate to stay warm only 24 hours after I was plying the kids with water and slathering them with sun cream at the school sports day. Duncan was invited up for the pre-school races and had a great time, although he doesn’t take after his competitive mother. The more he grows up, the more something like mountain biking looks like the sport for him. He’s definitely a dreamy, laid back soul who’d rather ride his bike than play football. Wonder where he gets that from.