Friday, June 01, 2007

Babies, Moms and Donkeys

Have you ever made a quilt you just plain did not like? I mean from the get-go, from fabric purchase? I did one this week:

This is for my DGS who will be born in August, the same little guy whose parents went along on the Utah trip. Mom loves soft, quiet, no-contrast colors so I went specifically looking for those types for a quilt for her first baby.
I hate it. To me, the colors are blaaah and the lack of contrast booooring. (the picture seems to be a bit more saturated than the actual fabrics) It looks like the type of "comforter" you'd buy at Sears for $19.99. I have to keep telling myself it's not for me, I may never even see it again. When you make a gift, whose tastes should be involved, anyway? Do you bestow a gift quilt in your favorite colors or the recipients? Do you even ask? **sigh** You can see a tiny bit of the border at the top: it's a nondescript plain solid beige. Goes perfectly with the other colors. I want to get it wrapped up quick.
In more interesting ideas, I've followed Ami Simms Alzheimer's project from it's inception, and was finally inspired to try my hand at a little quilt that represents my take on Altzeimers.

Against a sunny, light and happy past, are the shadows of loved ones we've lost to this horrid disease. My grandmother left us 10 years before she passed away, and her final years made me constantly think of Shadow People. This is still an idea in the making, I don't know where or how it will end up. Maybe I just need to make it for me.

I introduced you all to my darlin' donkey Paco several months back. We adopted him as a wild child from the BLM 5 years ago. He was born wild and was wild when we brought him home. He's super smart, so it didn't take me long to convince him that we're family; now he'd sit in my lap if I'd let him! He will let me walk up to him when he's lying down, and I can sit down and relax on him - he won't move a muscle, but I think he purrs.
He's been broke to halter since the beginning, but I never got around to training him to ride. DH's oldest granddaughter Devyn decided she wanted to ride him so she spent a couple days walking him around with a saddle on, and the other evening she hopped on!
I was sitting in the patio sewing on binding when she yelled for me to look - amazing! He never turned an ear, in fact in this picture he's got his eyes nearly closed! Now, this is not to say he moved around a lot - he took maybe a dozen steps when I went out there and called him to me, but he wasn't too concerned about someone on his back. We had a fun evening playing, and he loved every minute.

Another Utah pic, or maybe I should say Mom pic. We went to Bryce canyon and she spent a long while gazing out over the miles. I could only suppose what might be going thru her mind. When she finally turned around, all she said was "Puts you in your place in this world, doesn't it?" This might be one of my favorite pictures of her even though we can't see her face.
And yes, it certainly puts you in your place.

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10 comments:

flippytale Quilter (Christine) said...

Oh, you know she will adore it because it came from you. Soon you will be able to make another one for the little guy as he gets older!

Quilting Pirate said...

I can see the challenge with the baby quilt colors - I like you would want more brightness and contrasting.

I am humbled by your Altzeimers' project. I paused to think of your family and the shadows of the past. Thank you for sharing such a personal piece.

Anonymous said...

Persdonally, I think your top is very pretty but I know what you mean about "low contrast" quilts, they just don't have as much "spark" to them. The quilting will add another dimension to your quilt and give it more life. An advantage of low contrast is that you don't have to worry so much about changing thread color when quilting and marking a light quilt top is easier than a dark one. I'm sure they will love your gift.

LJ

Rosy said...

The baby quilt is so soft and cuddly. Gbaby will always love it as you made it! I too admire your depiction of family Altzeimer victims, so sad. I think you read your Mom's mind exactly! What a beautiful photo.

Rosy said...

P.S....I bet Paco is soo happy to be in your care! He is adorable!

Elaine Adair said...

Yep, I agree with the quilt - hey, it needs some LIFE! What about appliqueing (fusing) some clever chicks in the border, or kittens, puppies, etc. THEY can be the color and the quilt center can remain quiet! I start baby quilts off pastel, in the center, and by the time I get to the border, they are all FULL of color. I just CANNOT keep them soft and sweet.

The Alzeimers idea is wonderful - and too near many of us.

Pam said...

I am really touched by your Alzheimers quilt. I also lost my grandmother to the disease, years before she died. And she was just a shadow of a person. Hopefully one day this disease can be cured.

Angie said...

Hmmmm, guess I'm the odd 'woman' out...I really like the colors of the baby quilt. Wanna send it to me and make something else for the intended recipient??? ROFL

I wanna ride that donkey!! Actually, I just plain want a donkey...and a pygmy goat...and a horse...and...and...LOL

Susan H. said...

I love your Alzheimer's quilt. I know what you mean about losing someone before their death. Dad had Alzheimer's and when then end came and the doctor's wanted to keep him alive, they were clearly told that this shell was only that - a shell. The wonderful man that was my father had been "dead" and lost to us for a long time. He was allowed to peacefully, "officially" leave this life and return to his Father to the perfect, glorified body and mind promised.

Finn said...

You know Su Bee, sometimes you just gotta do what you just gotta do!, including those pastel baby quilts. I'm totally in sync with you...trust me! I think babies like color and things that grab your interest...rice cereal only covers just so much...yuk!
BUT...she is the mom and she thinks it's about her, you did the right thing and I did too, more time than I can remember, and hated every minute of it.

You could make a "Granny's" quilt, or Nana's or whoever you will be. One to keep at your house, and snuggle with....or a bright 'play on' quilt for the floor or grass..that way you'd be happy too..*VBS* Meeting the expectations of another person's taste is a hard pill to swallow.

You aren't alone...sending big anti-pastel hugs, Finn