Essential sewing keeping me clothed and sane

Cat Endorses Quilt


I know lots of you have cats, dogs and other domesticated animals who relish helping you with pattern placement, sorting fabrics and cutting out etc.. I’ve seen the pics!  Mine, (cat called Eddie) however stays well out of the way of sharp things like pins, needles and scissors so it was somewhat a surprise when the other day she came out and nestled comfortably on my latest quilting project as I sat in the garden and hand sewed the binding. I couldn’t shift her which I took to be a good omen – cats especially know ‘things’- and I now believe this quilt is not only endowed with effort and love but animal instinct too. Just wierd.


Did anyone also note the colour coordination between my choice of clothes and the quilt? – You get bonus points – well done! [dress= Vogue 8870, pink & multi-coloured chiffon; cardigan = Burda Cocoon Cardigan 11/2013 #107, saffron yellow mohair blend]


This one is for my very dear friend Caroline who I met this summer after a 20 year weekend break. She was busy, I was busy but we reconnected easily, simply and effortlessly. After a short but extremely enjoyable 4 day visit I decided she needed a quilt and so she gets one. She has no choice in the matter!

Starting point – a painting Caroline has had for as long as I have known her. Here’s the colour scheme.DSCN5543

Next was to personalise the style. Caroline is a photographer and has a million (or more) paintings, pictures, photos in her home either hanging on the walls or leaning against walls or stacked waiting to be hanged. So frames, borders, mountings are prevalent throughout. So the quilt pattern was going to be like frames around a picture.

I did get carried away a wee bit with this idea and some of my frames are rectangular, big squares, little squares and no where near square. Once again I made a quilt that has a basic plan interweaved with improvisation.


Individual blocks

31 fabrics used which I determine to be significant as it’s a prime number and no one in the entire world understands prime numbers so they’re weird. All fabrics are Kaffe Fasset because Caroline is a bit posh and likes and appreciates the good stuff. they were bought online from FlorenceRose and I couldn’t recommend this Internet site enough! Excellent communication and personal service and not bad prices either! And although there’s only 20 involved in the planning stage, I bought many more and used them all.


The finished blocks were round about 10″ with a few at 20″ to upset the regularity and some are only 5″ sewn together. My inspiration was this which is actually paper pieced – aye! in your dreams!


The blocks are essentially constructed around a square in the middle with ‘frames’ or borders surrounding them. Sometimes the centre pieces are rectangle and every block is different. Approximately 9X9 grid with all the leftovers sewn into a stripey border.

Mine (or rather Caroline’s) has simple straight line machine quilting in a grid-ish pattern to keep all the layers together.


Pre-quilting airing

It’s huge! About 96″ (2.4m) square. I have no idea how I got this through my little home sewing machine – sheer tenacity and brute force determinism I suppose. We have a King-sized bed and to check for fit (just like dressmaking) it reaches all the way from the head to feet and hangs over the edges too: perfect for wrapping yourself up in while watching a movie or Breaking Bad on the sofa with lots of room for one other! Take it in the camper van for days out while photographing landscapes. Lay it on the heather for picnics or lying back and gazing at the sky…..


I never really use a pattern when making a quilt – I just buy a load of fabric, cut up and sew it back together again. When there’s no fabric left – that’s the size of the quilt! Maybe I should try to be a bit more disciplined……DSCN5691

And when there’s nothing on TV or it’s raining just gaze at the quilt…….count the fabrics, look at the frames, try to figure out the construction and method in my madness, or just simply smile at the colours. It’s a happy quilt.



The backing is a simple black and white print to contrast with the colours on the front with a patched strip down the middle.lhd665_zoom__14098


And no quilt is complete without a name and a label



The quilt has already been posted, has arrived and been unpacked and just in from Caroline……..


Her cat on the quilt!

52 thoughts on “Cat Endorses Quilt

  1. Beautiful, beautiful wildness…a world of dreaming

  2. Oh Ruth, this is luscious. Caroline is one lucky woman. I love love all the mixed fabric from K. Fassett – his fabrics are so beautiful, so vibrant and liberated. You look beautiful on the lawn with the quilt and Eddie…

    • It was a very pleasant way to spend the afternoon Coco, we don’t often have such fine weather so it’s best to make the most of it when it comes.
      You can’t fault Kaffe Fassett fabrics can you?
      Thank you

  3. The first photo looks like you are covered with a sea of wildflowers. Such wonderful color combinations it is not wonder the cat feels like gracing you with her presence. Your friend must be just so delighted with such a huge and wonderful gift…WOW!

    • Thanks Mrs Mole. We have no flowers in our garden (shock, horror!) so this really did bring a splash of colour on the day.
      Maybe I should plant some….

      • Rainbow Swiss chard grows all winter and looks so pretty and you can eat it too. Even in winter, when it snows here, it just keeps growing year round and the small birds can nibble on it too.

  4. that is one grand quilt… in so many ways. Many years ago, a very wise man told me that cats sleep atop things that make them look even more beautiful! I think these two cats prove that point once again.

  5. Yes…cats know good. 🙂 Beautiful!!!

  6. Look at you, in gentle sun splendour and all that light to help you, plus a feline companion.

    Exquisite quilit. Reminds me of a Klimt painting.

  7. Beautiful quilt! Must come visit you for 4 days. (but, is it just me or are you really very productive?)

  8. Amazingly beautiful and comfy too. A winning combination 🙂

  9. Absolutely gloriously beautiful, what a lovely gift!


  10. Such beautiful colour combinations Ruth, this is gorgeous. You have one very lucky friend.

  11. The colours! Beautifully selected.

  12. This post made me smile, even giggle, and I was in a bad mood! No mean feat.
    Really super quilt.

  13. Oh my goodness, can I please be your friend? Just a stunning quilt and a sweet story to accompany. And the giving and receiving cats love it….what could be better? (Regarding the prime number – I find it so cool to incorporate that. My wedding date was chosen because it was all prime numbers 5/7/11 – aren’t we geeky and weird)

  14. Love your fabric choices! You made a lovely quilt, and wrote a beautiful post to go with it. I’ve always believed quilts are special.

  15. Of course! Klimt! I was struggling with what it reminded me of and the answer was in the comments. You and your cat have excellent taste. Your friend is extremely fortunate to be given such a special gift.

  16. I read this post at a time when I couldn’t comment!
    It made me smile and warmed my soul – and added joy – with each progressive component of your story!
    Just beautiful! All that quilts evoke!

    And the endorsement of the second cat: PRICELESS!

  17. Wow!! This is gorgeous! And ginormous!! I’m boggling a how it fitted under your machine. The colours are just beautiful, and I’m glad your friend loves it. And I think it’s worth mentioning that you are sitting outside, in the sunshine, without a coat, in October!!

  18. What a gorgeous and generous gift. The cat knows a thing or two. Pardon me, the cats know! Did you use batting between the layers? Love your method…when the fabric runs out that’s the quilt!

  19. Very beautiful, happy quilt! The fact that the cats love it is surely the highest honor a quilt (and it’s maker) can have!

  20. oh my goodness this quilt is amazing! What a refreshing break from garment sewing. The Kaffe Fasset prints are perfect for this sort of free improvisational patchwork. I love it, can you tell?
    And the cats are adorable.

  21. Hi there Ruth,

    What a beautiful labour of love and such a perfect gift for your friend.
    You look so relaxed in the garden sewing with Eddie. As a cat owner, I can confirm that your quilt is a purfect ( sorry couldn’t resist)hit if he is lounging on it. A top score for your quilt as your friends cat feels exactly the same about it. Now, how do I get our cat to drape himself on the bed bought for him??!!

    As an aside, hope that your son is settling well into University life and being away from home. Thinking of you Ruth, its a life changing time for Mum too.xx

    • Make a colourful quilt Marysia… the cat will know….
      Thank you, M is loving uni and also loving coming home every other weekend!
      To be perfectly honest I’ve waited 18 years for this moment… Bad mom! but somewhat good mom as he has to learn for himself.

  22. This blog post is so incredibly happy. Smiled all the way through it!

  23. What an amazing piece of work Ruth. I especially love that you are wearing a matching outfit and sitting in a deck chair. The whole colour scheme and pattern is so pleasing, and the backing works perfectly. I can’t begin to imagine how you do this – especially on such a grand scale. Phew. And cats are like people, aren’t they, always drawn to warmth and comfort.

  24. What a lovely quilt for a very lucky friend. I laughed to see the second cat in the last pic. Thank you for sharing.

  25. Thank you for showing us Eddie, She is beautiful as is your quilt!

  26. Pingback: and counting… | corecouture

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