I love making memory quilts (quilts from clothing of deceased loved ones). I usually spend my time praying and reflecting on the life of the lost loved one while sewing. We recently lost my husband’s step father and it has devastated my mother-in-law. They were married for 39 years so I can’t imagine the loss she is feeling right now. I made a memory quilt out of my father in law’s shirts and I’m going to give it to her for her birthday.
When making memory quilts I don’t like to use any fabric on the top except the loved ones clothing if possible. I think this is important to me because that was the request of the first one I ever made. My friend asked me to simply cut squares out of her mom’s shirts and sew them together. I like to keep them simple so the clothing is the main focus, not the design or the quilting. There have been several exceptions to this, one time I embroidered each square of a quilt with Winnie the Pooh characters to match an article of clothing for a child’s memory quilt. Sometimes people only have one or two articles of clothing so I have to add other fabric but I always make sure they choose it. If they want a pattern I try to lead them to a pattern with large blocks to get the most out of the clothing being used. I’ve also had requests to print pictures of loved ones onto fabric and add them into the quilt which I love to do. Although I enjoy making flashy, fun and whimsical quilts I also love the simplicity of a memory quilt!