A Birthday Quilt

I had the honor of making my paternal grandmother, Shirley, a quilt for her 90th birthday. It was a big occasion and the family celebrated with her first birthday party…ever! The entire paternal clan gathered in Zion, IL for the celebration. I had never realized how close they were to Lake Michigan until we got to the hotel. Boy was it cold but the view in the mornings was worth it!

2014-01-18 08.53.56

Back to the quilt, talk about a huge honor (and undertaking)! It was a family project, my mom picked out the prints – Sunnyside by Kate Spain, together we picked out the solid – Pistachio! – and my mom and sister helped with the layout and provided the cheering squad.

The horrible cold snap we the country experienced at the beginning of January delayed my solid and binding fabrics arrival until a week before it had to be gifted. Needless to say, I worked quickly to get it together. The binding was stitched on the front right before bed on Thursday night and I flew out to IL on Friday morning.


The binding was done in the PHL airport, in the air and on my Aunt’s couch in IL. I finally enlisted my mom to help me finish (I even taught her a new stitch!). The quilt was washed, dried and the label was stitched on. It was done with 8 hours to spare!


I am happy to say that she loved it! I am always so relieved when the quilts that I make are well received. I have a secret fear of them being hated.



The back turned out to be my favorite part of the quilt. I had to get a bit scrappy because I did not have enough to do it entirely in the solid green.

And here is the family: Dad, me, Grandma, Mom, my sister and nephew! My favorite thing about the photo below is my almost two (!) year old nephew holding up the corner.


Quilt Details

Pattern: My own improvisation. I started with the Fat Quarter Shop’s Jelly Roll Jam and improvised after the first few steps. The back was completely improv.
Front: Sunnyside by Kate Spain – jelly roll & Bella in Pistachio solid
Back: Sunnyside by Kate Spain, white & green geometric is from my stash, and Bella in Pistachio
Binding: Skyward in Sprig, Kate Spain
Quilting: Center lines and border triangles – Aurifil 40WT #2600 (a pale gray), wavy decorative stitches – Aurifil 50WT #2024 (white)
Finished size: approx. 60 x 60″


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4 thoughts on “A Birthday Quilt

  1. […] the top together! This is the second short cut pattern by the Fat Quarter Shop that I have used. My grandmother’s quilt started with their Jelly Roll Jam […]

  2. Blocks & Swaps | andpins December 19, 2014 at 7:57 am Reply

    […] made to date and I love knowing that. She has pieces of my favorite scarf, my mom’s quilt, my grandmother’s quilt, pieces of fabric from both of my nephew’s quilts, […]

  3. WIP Wednesday | andpins March 19, 2014 at 8:40 am Reply

    […] I am so thankful that I was able to see my granddad in January when I traveled to Zion for my grandmother’s 90th birthday. When I asked what color quilt he wanted, he quickly replied “green and gold”. I am […]

  4. Nancy, Near Philadelphia February 19, 2014 at 8:13 am Reply

    It’s a terrific quilt and I like the idea of something so contemporary for a nonagenarian!

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