Quarantine Quilts

Quarantine Quilt Project: Life in the Time of Coronavirus, Part V (Guest Blog Post)

All good things must come to an end as they say, and here is the 5th and final installment of the guest blog post series by my talented friend Wendy Hill on the awesome quilt she made during quarantine with the four rambunctious boys next door (aka “The Boys”) ages 2 – 8.

Thanks for reading this series along with me (I was so excited to receive each installment via e-mail and read it myself for the first time while posting it!)

And if you are just joining us, see these posts for Parts I, II, III and IV of the story by Wendy Hill:

You can follow Wendy Hill on Instagram @wendyquilter


Quarantine Quilt Project: Life in the Time of Coronavirus

Part V: The Big Giveaway

I’m eager to show off the Quarantine Quilt and The Big Giveaway where “The Boys” and their parents see the quilt for the first time.

Here are the full view photographs of the front and the back. (The quilt, with no sleeve, wiggled a bit being clamped to a bar for the photos.)

#1- FV front#2- FV backAt home, I took some detail photographs. Of course, the cats found the quilt in no time….The Quarantine Quilt is officially cat approved!!

#3- Cooper on quilt#4- Izzy on quiltLet’s start with the appliquéd hand blocks. I put The Boys’ hands in the middle, with the adults’ hands on the four corners. It’s symbolic on purpose: the adults are looking after the kids.

#5- kids hands#6- Dad#7- Mom#8- David#9- WendyHere are a few more detail photographs of the quilt front:

#10-front#11- front#12- frontThe quilt back is fun too, with the assortment of found fabrics and leftovers. A friend sent me her found robot boy yardage for the center; she thought it perfect for The Boys.

#13- back#14- back#15- backI’m so pleased I took the time to embroider the labels. These labels will last as long as the quilt.

#16 both labels#17 heart label#18 main labelIt had been a long time since “The Boys” had seen the blocks, and I wondered what they would remember about their creations. But the 3 older boys wasted no time in finding their hand and favorite blocks.

One of “The Boys” found his favorite block, saying it was the weirdest block ever. I told him I’d never seen anything like it and in fact, it was ‘genius’. He had a big grin.

#19Another favorite of The Boys was this block. I think it’s graphic and moody, in a good way.

#20Finally the day for the Big Giveaway came. David and I spread out several sheets on our back deck. As we watched the kids scramble around the quilt (while staying 10’ apart), some of us burst into tears while the rest became teary. This project was definitely a good thing.

#21- giveaway the quiltIn the beginning, we were two neighbors who banded together when the state government ordered a month-long lockdown. At first, we joined forces to add something special to the daily life of “The Boys”, whose routines had changed suddenly with the Pandemic.

Then we started helping each other out. We even celebrated shared birthdays in the open yard between our houses. “The Boys” were growing up in front of our eyes, going from ages 2-8 to ages 2-9. We became closer while we had to live separately.

I can’t help but feel there is a larger story here during this Pandemic. There must be a patchwork of stories unfolding all over the United States and the World, as we find ways to connect and help each other out.

Quarantine Quilts

Quarantine Quilt Project: Life in the Time of Coronavirus, Part I (Guest Blog Post)

I am so excited! My tremendously talented friend Wendy Hill has agreed to do a series of guest blog posts about a wonderful quilt project she’s been working on with children in her neighborhood during the quarantine/”COVID-times”. Over the past several months, she’s shared with me updates on this amazing project and I invited her to share with my tierneycreates blog readers. I hope the story of this project makes you smile as much as it made me smile.

Wendy Hill is a fiber artist and teacher who has written several art quilting books to include most recently Creative Quilt Challenges, cowritten with Pat Pease.   She has a website Wendy Hill Quilt Artist and you can follow her current work and musings on Instagram @wendyquilter.


Quarantine Quilt Project: Life in the Time of Coronavirus

Part I: Once Upon A Time

This is the story of two neighbors who banded together when the state government ordered a lock down because of the first Global Pandemic in over 100 years.

The big wide world was suddenly narrowed down to one house each for the four young boys next door and for us, a retired couple.

We live on a quiet cul-de-sac of a street, in a woodsy area, and now our respective worlds are turned upside down. 

#1 Yards#2 Yards#3 Yard SM“The Boys”, ages 2-8 years, explored the area around their house after finishing ‘school’.

With no fences and the houses close together, “The Boys” inevitably spilled over into our yard.

One day, it seemed, to them, a good idea to fill our birdbaths with dirt and make mud. “The Boys” cleaned up the mess and later dropped off an apology.

“Can you ever forgive us?” the note read. 

#4 BirdbathThere was nothing to forgive! “The Boys” were going stir crazy.

I sent an invitation to participate in “An Exchange”. I started with a drawing of a mouse, which looked a lot like a rat, and invited “The Boys” to add to the drawing. This drawing, plus two others, went back & forth until we had finished artworks. 

#5, first drawing#6, first drawing#7, collage#8, 3rd drawingLife during the pandemic meant one day blending into to the next, without much definition. But now, we waited to hear the patter of footsteps followed by the chime of the doorbell.

Likewise, I could hear “The Boys” squeal with delight when I rang their doorbell. It was exciting to open the door and see what The Boys left on the porch. 

One day, I sent over a note which read “I have a bit of a crazy idea….”. I sent over a Big Bag of Fabric Scraps with instructions to fill up blank 8 1/2” by 11” pages with fabric pieces. Overlaps of fabric were okay but no gaps. I explained I’d sew the fabrics together to make “quilt blocks”.

If “The Boys” had fun, we could keep it up until we had enough to make something.

#9, Bag of ScrapsThe mom replied “This sounds like a great idea!” and we were off.

The Boys had fun playing with color & texture, and they enjoyed seeing their fabric arrangements get transformed into blocks. As the number of blocks grew, they played with layouts on their floor. We agreed to make enough blocks for a quilt.

We were all building new pandemic memories and they would have a cuddly family quilt. Win-Win-Win! 

#10, The Boys#11, making arrangements#12, more arrangements#13, trial layouts

Wendy’s Next Guest Blog Post: The Boys Make 61 Blocks!