Friday, February 17, 2023

Design Floor Friday - The Emergency Quilt

Welcome to another edition of Design Floor Friday!!  It's been quite some time since I've added a post to this series.  Today, I'm back with a tale of a very special quilt.  It was a super speedy finish because I was a quilter on a mission!.  The quilt is something new, something old, and something unexpected, all wrapped up into one.  

Let me explain...

You see, my friend had a house fire last week.  It was a total loss.  I was devastated for their family.  When quilters face tragedy, we make a quilt!  That's just what I did when I discovered that I had nothing appropriate ready for gifting to a pre-teen boy.

I knew just what to do, though...

I gathered every Duke shirt in the house and planned a pleasing layout:

On Sunday...

He's a Duke fan and my family just happened to have YEARS worth of Duke T-shirts saved for a quilt.  During last week's Zoom call with Knittingsuek, I deconstructed the shirts:

On Monday...

I went upstairs before work to fire up the heat press:

With time remaining and all the shirts pressed, I cut them to size:

The next step had to wait until my work day was done...

It was then that I went back to the "design bed" for an updated layout, as the proportions were wrong on the 3 x 5 plan.  Going with 4 x 4 felt much better:

Back in the studio, I made the necessary adjustments to the smaller shirts...

And created a feature block for the recipient:

What time is it, Joyful???

Time to stitch the shirts into a quilt top.  First one half...

Followed by pairs of blocks for the second half...

But it was later in the evening than I typically sew, yet the quilt top was done.  Or was it?!  Here's where I left it on Monday night:

HINT:  Do NOT sew later than you should!!!

On Tuesday...

With quilt top (and seam ripper in hand), I headed to work, took out the offending seam that I decided I couldn't live with, and reassembled the quilt top when I got home:

SEW much better when the quilt turns out like the plan!!  The completed quilt top measures 64" square.

By Tuesday night, the quilt was loaded on the longarm and ready for quilting:

ETA...  Sending out a HUGE THANK YOU to Suzanne in Alaska for allowing me to use backing fabric provided for another project.  Please forgive me for neglecting to add this prior to releasing the post).  You saved my from having to take the extra time that it would have required to locate (or purchase) and piece the necessary yardage.  There was even enough leftover to use for binding!  :o))

On Wednesday...

Even though I was scheduled to work late, I left work at lunchtime to knock out what I refer to as semi-custom quilting on the quilt, with the hopes of finishing it before the arranged time for my weekly Zoom call with LeeAnna @ Not Afraid of Color:

Mission accomplished!!

Once our call was over, the quilt had a date with my rotary cutter so that it could be squared up:

After dinner, it was back up to the studio to apply the binding, but I found that I couldn't stop there!  I simply HAD to stitch the binding down, as well:

 After quilting, trimming and binding, the quilt measures 63" x 64" square-ish.

With that done, the quilt was washed, dried, and ready for gifting, but some better photos to share with you needed to wait until morning:

 After a its tumble through the washer and dryer, the quilt measures 61" x 62" square-ish.

And one final shot of the Emergency T-Quilt, casually tossed on the porch swing:

I'm surprised at how quickly this came together!  Never before have I completed such a large project SEW fast.  It was truly a labor of love and  I'm looking forward to delivering the quilt over the weekend.  Here's hoping he likes it!  I feel fairly confident that he will.

ETA...  Sending out a HUGE THANK YOU to Suzanne in Alaska for allowing me to use backing fabric provided for another project.  Please forgive me for neglecting to add this prior to releasing the post).  You saved my from having to take the extra time that it would have required to locate (or purchase) and piece the necessary yardage.  There was even enough leftover to use for binding!  :o))

Until next time...
Wrap someone in a QUILTY hug!!! 

Sharing with Alycia


Whooping it up with Sarah


Visit Andree


  1. Sorry for the circumstances, but happy to see you quilting again!

  2. Well done! He will LOVE it!--TerryK@OnGoingProjects

  3. Turned out great! It's a really thoughtful gift and will bring a warm hug at a difficult time.

  4. Nicely done! That heat press sure did come in handy with this project.

  5. You are the perfect quilting friend. So sorry for the house fire-how horrid!

  6. What a treasure you are, making this for a boy who lost so much. I am sure it will be a comfort to him in more ways then he knows.

  7. this was not easy to get done, but you did it! It says so much about your giving nature

  8. Annie (Annie’s Musings)February 17, 2023 at 8:05 PM

    It’s so great of you to jump right in to make a quilt. And what a perfect quilt decision. A wonderful use of T-shirts donated by your family to help someone else feel loved after such a great loss.

  9. What a wonderful gift. It is amazing what we can accomplish when we put our heart and soul into a project. I am sure it will be treasured by the young man.

  10. I'm sure he will cherish this quilt. I pray the family is doing okay after the fire. Great job Joy! ~Jeanne

  11. What a special gift - he will cherish it forever, and your timing was just perfect on it!!! Hugs to you!!!!

  12. That is so thoughtful and generous of you to make this t-shirt quilt for your friend! It turned out beautifully!

  13. Wow, you really pulled it off in a week! I'm sure he will be pleased and feel cared for.

  14. That's a lot of Duke shirts! What a great "emergency" quilt, and I'm sure he loves it. Hope your friends are doing well. Fires are incredibly bad to deal with.

  15. Oh wow! I'm sorry to hear about your friend's total loss of their home. It's incredible to imagine having to begin again. And what a good friend you are! Your efforts with this Duke t-shirt quilt are so very generous and thoughtful. I am sure Lee will love the quilt .What a blessing you are to that family.

  16. That's a tragic story but I'm sure that the quilt will be loved and appreciated. Thanks so much for linking up to Free Motion Mavericks! Take care.

  17. A fire is tough for the family. My BFF's house burned 3 weeks before my wedding. I learned a lot about insurance, etc from what she went thru for months. Glad you could help in some way.


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