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Five years ago, my thirty-something son asked me to make him a quilt. I was a little taken aback. . . he had never seemed very interested in my quilting. I put Mike off for awhile; but he asked me again.
So I began to go through my fabric stash in an attempt to figure out what fabrics I could use for his project. Mainly, kid-themed fabrics dominate my stash, along with florals and bright feminine-styled fabrics. Finding something that I thought Mike would like was a bit challenging.
I came up with some brown and cream fabrics I had ordered awhile back – they were vintage type fabrics, American civil-war inspired. Here are some fabric examples on my Pinterest page.
Beginning to pull fabrics together, I really wanted to finish it before he asked me again. Unfortunately, I really rushed it; I wasn’t feeling particularly inspired or creative at the time…I just wanted to “get ‘er done!” So, I did. Including some machine embroidery here is Mike’s finished quilt.
I was not at all happy with the finished product. Not really liking the salmon-y coloured fabrics, I was disappointed I had used them. But, Mike seemed to like his quilt and he appreciated it.
Maybe a month later, our son’s best buddy who was also named Mike, asked me to make him a quilt. I was so shocked! Do guys in their 30’s really want a quilt? He, of course, offered to pay me for it, but I declined, knowing full well he couldn’t afford it.
Pulling more fabrics from my over-subscribed stash, I made Mike #2 his quilt. He smiled a lot when I gave it to him, so I think he liked it.
As many of you already know, our Mike passed away in March of 2018. One of the things I kept from his apartment was his quilt. He always had it laying very neatly across the back of his sofa. Mercifully, it still smells like him.
As hindsight set in, I regret not taking more time to design Mike a really special quilt – something just for him. I regret not sitting down with my pencil and paper and drawing a quilt pattern that would have suited just him. I regret not knowing that I would never have the opportunity to make him another quilt.
Recently, I discovered a hidden gem in Calgary – a section of the Rotary/Mattamy Greenway. It’s a pathway located in Royal Oak, adjacent to the car dealership where my vehicle is serviced. There are ponds and huge trees and beautiful City views along the way.
Not really sure why, I wanted to get a few photos of Mike’s quilt in these exquisite, natural surroundings. Somehow, the backdrop makes the quilt look better.
My heart still aches at the loss of our son. It’s strangely comforting having his quilt here at my house. In the end, I’m glad I made it.
P.S. One of the most outstanding birthday gifts I ever received was from Mike. He went to the local quilt shop and bought me this book called Color Magic for Quilters. He was a very thoughtful person.
r. It’s an amazing resource. Thank you son.