Sunday, January 31, 2010

Memory Quilts

    As kids grow, there are so many memories that you just want to preserve in one fashion or another. Of course there are photos and other memorabilia that you can combine in scrapbooks and albums, but another great source of memories is t-shirts.

We have been making these memory quilts for a number of years. While many t-shirts find their way to Goodwill and Salvation Army, and a few wind up in the trash, there are always some that touch that spot in your heart, or tug at a cherished time. The type of shirt changes as the kids grow older. The first we did were favorite shirts, and then they switched to shirts with the logos from camps or sports teams.

Before sending each girl off to college, I made sure they had a quilt commemorating all their high school activities. Now you can even print pictures from your computer onto fabric and include them. I haven't actually tried that yet, but how fun would that be!

The process I use is simple. I cut the design out in a square or rectangle. Then I add strips of fabric to each side until I have about a 16" square. The largest t-shirt design I have encountered will fit in a 16" square. Then I put the squares together with a border between and finish with another border or two.

Choosing the background materials and colors is an adventure for some kids and my girls always liked to help determine the arrangement of the shirts as well. It can truly be a family activity, and when you're finished, it is a memory that will last a long time.

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