So, sometimes I get an idea for a quilt and it is sort of vague and I have to sketch a bit, and it changes a lot over time, and it takes a while to get from the moment that I thought of it to being totally done. Sometimes that can take a year! Not so with this quilt! I knew Aaron was coming back to Nashville in January and I knew his apartment bedroom was just a tad bit….jail-cell-esque? Grey, cold, cinderblocks. So I thought I would make him a quilt and one night it came to me! Make a quilt with an Australian map on it. Once I had that thought all the pieces fell into place instantly, and by the end of that night I had a plan printed out and fabrics picked. I was able to make the entire front of the quilt with fabrics I already had at home, which was great for two reasons! 1. money. 2. i was impatient, and this way I got to start right away.
We brought it up to the mountains with us and I took some pics of it from outside our cabin. I decided to break it up by states, so that was fun to learn what all the states were, and I can now name them all (dont quiz me).
I debated putting blue all around it, for the negative space, but it seemed kinda obivious, for an ocean, and I didnt have that much blue. I love white quilts, so this was good. I also had that boat fabric leftover from a baby quilt, which I thought was fun.
Close up on Western Australia
One thing I really love about making quilts for people I know is that you can make them really personal, because there is a fabric for basically everything. Just from fabrics I already found I had so much “Aussie” stuff– sheep, clover, crocs, Aboriginal-looking patterns, grass, echidnas (it was hedgehog fabric, but close enough).
New South Wales and Victoria
There was also waves, seagulls, the Union Jac, sushi, anchors, and, not pictured, Animal from the Muppets. Which has nothing to do with Australia, but Aaron likes him!
For the back I found a really nice black chambray with anchors printed on it. Since Aaron has an anchor tattoo it seemed fitting. I also used a stripe of banana fabric for Aaron’s deep love of Australian bananas (they are superior to all other lands). I wonder if a banana tattoo is next?
The binding is grey skulls. I did free motion quilting all along the white spaces, and in each different state I did straight-line quilting going in a different direction, to further separate the states.
I must say, I had so much fun making this quilt, and the other great thing about making quilts for people is that you end up spending a lot of the time you are sewing thinking about that person, and in this case I was thinking about my Australia trip too. I am really happy with the way it turned out, and I have some plans for some state quilts in this same style. Will I ever have time to make them?? That remains to be seen, but the idea is there!
Welcome to America Aaron! You can now sleep, sorta, in your own land, while also experiencing all the pleasures of America, from meat dust to bald eagle sightings, to gun ownership and prohibitively expensive healthcare. Yay!