we leave tomorrow on vacation. (yes, I am aware that most people are preparing their children for a return to school. no, we are not skipping out on education. school starts super late around here. so, you know, we might as well take a vacation.) we are heading deep into the woods of nearby Pennsylvania. we go every year to a cabin in the woods. it has beds and electricity but no TV or much else for that matter…not even reliable cell phone service. it’s kind of a cheater’s camping but the point is, it’s quiet.
we spend our days swimming, hiking, sitting by the campfire, reading, eating ice cream and being all together. most importantly, I will be away from the computer, Facebook and my phone. it’s a respite I need but find challenging. it’s just hard for me to turn off the electronics when they are available. so we escape and go out of range.
this little herringbone quilt will be coming with us. it’s called a cuddly in our house when a quilt is small and doesn’t have a quilted top or binding on the sides. J, our little guy, insists on it. he has co-opted this quilt made a while back and it was becoming an issue. as in, “J has a cuddly but I don’t!!” mind you, J has a serious talent for attaching himself to things. he sleeps with one teddy bear with no stuffing named bobo; one bear with stuffing name baloo; one stuffed llama; and one teeny tiny bear…and now his cuddly. everything must be found before he can fall asleep. he draws pictures of himself and all these things and stresses the importance of each item. it’s adorable and a serious headache. many evenings us grown-ups are scrambling around the house looking for one of those five items and we say things to each other like:
“what are you looking for? baloo?,”
“no, the one without stuffing. bobo.”
“oh. last time I found him crammed into one of the pillows. did you check the pillows?”
it’s ridiculous. I can’t wait to bring it all with us to the woods because nothing ever gets lost in the woods.
anyway, J loves his cuddly and so C wanted one of his own. and, you know, there is packing to do and clothing to wash before we go on vacation so I opted to quilt instead because, basically, it is a lot more fun that those tasks that will actually help us leave for vacation.
I had started making several dozen half-square triangles a while ago, around the time of my tutorial on sew mama sew, and I figured the cuddly would be the perfect use for them.
the kid loves it! and, you don’t often get to say that about a quilt. he’s so happy to have a cuddly. I used a lot of scraps to make my half-square triangles and so I am thrilled to see them come together into something cuddly and lovable. everyone is happy.
it is a bit of a cheater quilt (we cheat at camping and we cheat at quilting, what can I say?) because to pull the quilt together I simply sewed the quilt top to the back and batting and sewed right-sides together around the edge leaving a small opening; turned it inside out and then topstitched around the edge to finish it. the thing is, the reason this is such a cozy quilt (and hence an official cuddly) is because no quilting and no binding make it soft and, wait for it…cuddly! voila! it’s a cuddly.
of course, J might just run off with this cuddly too. look at that face. he’s considering it.
I don’t quilt very often these days. a quilt is such a patient and meticulous thing to make. making clothing is faster and that quick turn-around feels good sometimes. but, I was definitely reminded while making this, albeit small, quilt that it feels so nice to quilt. something about making a blanket that is bound to be snuggled with, maybe? or perhaps it is just that making a quilt requires getting into a sort of methodical, repetitive rhythm? it’s a bit of a mental escape, I think. I’m not sure what it is about quilting. but, I do know that I’m really pleased with this humble, little cuddly and it’s got me longing for more half-square triangle making and maybe a bigger quilt. maybe? I’m not sure….that piecing is so much work! ah! anyone else get these crazy conflicts with quilting? am I alone in this crazy head house?
p.s. don’t you love my models? so cooperate and cute, aren’t they? don’t forget. I pay them in peanut M&M’s.