The photo quality on these is not the greatest but you can get the general idea. This is the quilt that generated the orphans I've been playing with. There is a long and involved story that goes along with the creation of this quilt (involving fabric I had made some pillowcases for Mom with and which she loved -- then asked me to make more of them. Me: "Um -- Mom, I bought that fabric over four or five months ago" Mom: "Is that a problem?" Me: "Oh -- um, no, no" Reality -- YES, YES! Let's just say it turned out to be a fabric that had been featured in some magazine I hadn't seen -- I found ONE website that had it. And they had it back ordered. I ordered more than enough to make the pillowcases -- then used it as a springboard to design the quilt. And wouldn't you know, AFTER the Internet ordering and searching ordeal one of my favorite LQS's got a bolt. I bought more since my design needed several more yards due to fussy cutting and the borders).
The long story also involves trying to find a design to feature said fabric and not finding a pattern I liked so trying my hand at design. First I thought of Ohio Stars with the floral as a feature, didn't like them, but wanted to play with HSTs (have I mentioned I will get obsessive about a technique or a shape for awhile and NEED to play with it?). So, I monkeyed around with variations of the size square I would need to feature the fabric and one of them was an "X" -- hmmn. As a child, my Mom would write notes to me in my lunches. Little things, always signed with xoxo's -- potential here. I signed notes to her the same way (ok, so we still do -- just because I'm 35 doesn't mean I've outgrown those darn xoxo's from my Mom). So, a quilt to tell my Mom I love her -- works for me. And that's it's name too (I KNOW I'm not the only quilter who names her quilts) "Mom, I love you. XOXO". A bit more tinkering around (sashing so the X's and O's were distinct, some cornerstones made of more HSTs) and some fabric shopping and I was set to go.
The long story also involves the fact that I finished the somewhere around 80"x80" quilt in, oh, October or so. (There's even more here about working on it over my summer vacation with the invaluable assistance from my good friend and fellow quilter Bonnie, travelling with the quilt in pieces to Oregon, Washington, and New Mexico -- but way too involved to get into here). Ummm...can we say a bit late if I wanted it finished for Christmas? Especially since this one I DID send out to be quilted? Um, I was VERY lucky that the wonderful long arm quilter I sent this to was able to squeeze me in. Especially since I not only sent her this one, but another as well (again, funny story here about a friend of Bonnie's who went to pick up her own quilt and saw mine -- she was freaked out because Bonnie also made one in purples for her mother and she KNEW it was an original design, so she couldn't figure out how there was another one there -- either that or I had been lying about designing it. Nope, this was the original, Bonnie just used my drawings and instructions to make hers. But I thought it was hilarious how weirded out she got). Not only did she finish both quilts, but they turned out beautifully. Especially since my only directions on this one were -- "um, I think some feathers". I wasn't being difficult, really, it has more to do with trusting this woman with the quilt. I did the part I do well (piece and play with color) and I KNOW she does the quilting well. I trust her judgment and I have loved everything she's done for me.
A much longer post than I had intended, but this quilt had a lot of story to go with it. Mom got it for Christmas, loved it, and now it rests in her guest bedroom. (whole 'nother story there -- but I knew I was taking a risk when I used a white background -- besides, that is MY bedroom when I go down and visit and will be dd's when she is old enough to visit on her own, three generations of xoxo's -- works for me!).