Last Mother's Day, I traveled to California to visit my Mom. While I was there, we talked about her quilting projects. She had a lot of them -- so many she worried she'd never finish them all. She had been diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis (a smoker's disease, although she'd never smoked). I helped her with one of the quilts, a very detailed Christmas quilt, by ironing the patterns onto the fabric. I was careful to make sure the pattern in the fabric followed the piece it would represent. The stripes slanted so that they appeared to twist around the candy cane. The horse's mane flowed in the direction it should.
A few weeks later, she told me she'd finished the square we'd built together. She was pleased with how it had turned out.
When she passed away a few days later, I promised myself I would finish what she'd started. In the week following her funeral, I realized just how daunting that task would be. I chose half a dozen projects and brought them home with me. The Christmas quilt is too complex for a beginner, but my goal is to finish it someday.
|Part of the border -- my Mom's work|
|Another part of the border - my Mom's work|
I unsewed the cape, repositioned it and appliquéd again. This time my stitches were better too. I added the hat. As I stitched around the tricky curves, I could almost hear my Mom's voice directing me in how to take the corners, how to make the points lie flat.
|Hat and face|
The skirt and legs were easy. As I stitched, I thought about my Mom...the things we'd shared over the years, her beautiful smile when she saw me in May, the twinkle that never ever left her eyes. Those thoughts made me sad and happy all at once.
|The bodice - satisfied at last|
|The witch so far|