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Quilt No.3 - The New York Nine

February 19, 2015

My first quilt was for Lily and my second quilt was for Ella... so, of course, my third quilt would be for my husband, Harry.  Last September was our ninth anniversary and I had to get cracking on a quilt design.

It takes a few things to happen before the process starts to take off... usually, I first go through a few inspiration photos saved on my Pinterest board.

I found this quilt from a little gray... I was really drawn to the pattern of crosses and stars.  I loved the stars... they always remind me of America - shocker there, am I right?  And, luckily, Amy Badskirt made it seem technically quite easy!

Credit: Link

And, as my mind began to wander... keeping my true inspiration in mind (my husband, of course)... I started making connections... to America... to Harry... to me... to his love of vintage things... and to his unrelenting desire to stop at each and every yard-, tag-, rummage-, estate-, and flea market sales... and of course, to the countless trips we took to upstate New York... and all throughout the coast of Maine.  We have so many good memories from these trips... so many stories to tell.

And also around this time, Harry had donated a ton of clothes he no longer wanted - weekend pants, worn jeans, work clothes, and old men's shirts...  clothes that he had travelled in, painted our four NY apartments in, and basically, lived in.  They, in their own way, had stories to tell too.

So now, I had the inspiration, the direction, the materials, and the motivation...

One of the reasons I have fallen in love with quilting is not only because of the one-of-a kind end product, but also because while I am lost in the process, memories come rushing back to me... with each scrap of material comes a story that brings more character to the quilt. It could be something as small as the store where the item was purchased to something more memorable as 'remember the time when....'

I love this, and it's not only personal memories... but quilting lets you get lost in thought. This is the main reason why I don't use rulers or try to be to nitpicky about precision... I go by feel, use my eye, and just go with the flow.

It is, what it is... What will be, will be.

If I were so concerned with the precision of matching points and perfect pressing, I know I would lose the love that I put into my quilts... and the quilt would become another means to feel not perfect enough.

This is how it is for me, personally, and I'm sure there's someone out there who can do both... but I can not... not yet anyway... or maybe I never will.

So for this quilt, the flash backs hit me hard because the memories span nine years... starting from before we had kids.

Remember when we packed up the car and travelled to a handful of places along Maine's beautiful coast line... For several summers, we went to vacation in Maine - Lubec, Stonington, Deer Isle, Acadia, Ogunquit, and Bar Harbor... We ate our body weight in lobsters, sweet corn, and blueberry pie (Pie in the Sky!).  Summer in Europe has a twinge of pain for me... it occurs around July 4th when I crave all of the classic summer foods from Maine.

Lubec, Maine
Stonington, Maine

Remember when we drove through streets of small town America and back to the mean streets of Manhattan - Hello, Woodstock! Saugherties! Red Hook! Catskills! Cold Springs! Poughkeepsie! Beacon! Hudson!

Remember when we would hit all the flea markets? And we hit them hard... there were quite a few!  Brooklyn Flea, Chelsea Antiques Market (sadly, closed now), Hell's Kitchen Flea Market,  West 25th Street Market, Hester Street Fair, and the Young Designers Market. And the food! Who can forget the food?!

The Brooklyn Flea

Remember when we would spend weekends on Fire Island - we were always a cab, a train, a livery cab, a ferry, and a five minute walk from total relaxation.  Many thanks to Stefanie, who was so kind and so generous to share this little piece of heaven with us.  Remember the flea market they had on the island?!!  If there's a flea, we will find it!

These days our days about something different...

And, we're ok with that!!

Thank you for nine (and counting!) years of great memories of a life in NYC that was full of discovery, travel, hard work, love, and endurance.  All of this created our family... and I am forever grateful!



The Back

The New York Nine

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