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Monday, May 9, 2011

Self Portrait Quilts and a Giveaway

Tonya, from Hillbilly Handiworks, had wanted me to repost the guest post I did on Stash Manicure for May for Me, about my self portrait quilt. So here it is. If you find it too boring, skip to the bottom, I'm having a little giveaway!!

A few years ago, I was challenged to make a self portrait quilt. What came to mind was a mosaic picture of myself or a piece with my picture on it somewhere, but that just didn't seem to tell much about me, except what I look like. So I went another direction. Here is what I made. I will explain each aspect, and hopefully you will learn a little more about me.


The background is the sky, as well as Tarheel blue, for NC.

The center square shows the things that are in the forefront of my life. The large AT symbol stands for the Appalachian Trail, of which I am a lover and supporter. I love nature, it brings me down to earth and makes me feel very humble. I think that nature also guides me in my choices in fabrics and colors, I don't look at the pattern per se, it just has to be pretty and make me feel happy.

The little red cross denotes my chosen profession, nursing, from which I retired in December after 32 years. ( I just can't say "retirement" enough, to which my regular blog readers can attest.)

 The infinity symbol, with the D (Dave) and the W (Wilma) is for the enduring relationship I have with my husband. ( 38 years). He totally supports my quilting and is probably responsible for 80% of the spending I do on fabric.

The elderly people represent the fact that we live with Dave's elderly mother, who is 89. When I made the quilt, his step dad was still alive too, and was the reason we had to move in here.

The sun. Well, what can I say. I love the feel of the sun on my face, even in the dead of winter.  I might have a few blemishes on my skin from earlier years, but if I couldn't go out in the sun, I might as well hang it up.

The little person on top of the mountain represents my love for hiking. At first glance of my physique, you wouldn't think I ever got off of the couch, but we hike at least once a week, weather permitting, for anywhere from 3-6 miles. Living in western North Carolina there is no end to the trails available. And the views from the higher elevations are spectacular. I always feel like Rocky when we get to the top. I even love hiking in the winter mainly because there are NO ticks and NO snakes. 

The little waving quilt tells it all for me. Quilting is in every aspect of my life. If I see a pretty view, I think what a beautiful quilt it would make. I can't imagine my life without fabric and quilts. I have made at least 1 quilt for each of my family members and friends, and have dozens in piles here at home. My sister asks me what I am going to do with them. (Hmmm. I always thought that when the electric grid fails, I would trade them for food. Without electricity, people will need quilts for warmth......right? ) 

The symbols in the border show things that have shaped my life in other ways. 

First, I am  Buckeye at heart, always will be, even though I have come to love NC. Where you are born and bred is where your roots are, it can't be changed.

The ecology symbol represents my passion for this planet, and making it sustainable for all of our generations to come.

The dove....well everyone wants peace, don't they??

And golf. We all have to have one cross to bear, lol. I love golf, but it is a fickle friend, and messes with my head all the time. But it is outdoors, most of the courses are beautiful, and it is very good exercise. 

So, this little wall hanging holds much more information about me than a picture ever could. Hopefully someday someone in my family will pull this out and have great insights into the life of Great Great Grandma Wilma, the one who made all the quilts. And with no picture, they will assume that I am beautiful!!!

I challenge you to make a self portrait quilt for yourself. Future quilting generations will be glad you did. 


OK!!! Now about that giveaway. I hate the multi-posting requirements for giveaways, so all you have to do is leave a comment to this post. I will pick a winner before I do my next post, probably the end of this week. I will be giving away a charm pack of Bliss fabrics, plus a little key chain, and maybe a couple more little ditties thrown in as a surprise, so that this can be "May for You"!!

Hope everyone has a great week.



Vroomans' Quilts said...

I only have the 'red x' for the photo of your wallhanging. I am glad you re-posted this one. And it is very generous of you to host a give away.

Roma said...

Oh what a nice thing!1 A give away.. oh oh pick me please.. LOL

and like the first poster, all I see is a red x for the photo..
Humm wonder why?

Tonya said...

I can see it! Thanks for re-posting as it is a very ME thing!

Karen said...

When you said "self portrait", I was imagining something completely different. I love the way you've incorporated all the aspects of your life that are near and dear to you. Thanks!

Cathi said...

I was quite intrigued by your self portrait. I wonder what mine would be like if I made one..hmm something to consider.

Would like to be entered in the giveaway also. Thanks.

DragonPoodle said...

I absolutely love the self-portrait and you have started me thinking about doing one in the same style. This would make a great class--have you ever thought about teaching?

SandyQuilts said...

What a surprise. I read my "favorites" in google reader (you're there of course) and I expected a face .... love it. So creative. Thanks for re-sharing.

Anita in Florida said...

Lovely giveawsy...thanks for the opportunity to win!!

HaveFaith said...

Nice giveaway. I also love the AT. Wish I had time and health to walk the entire thing. We did put our feet on it and walked a few miles near Franklin, NC. It was a lovely day and we met several hikers that had started in Georgia and were working their way north. Such fun!

Wanda said...

I loved this quilt the first time you did a post on it. I think it is brilliant. My May for Me project is to get my craft & sewing room done. I hope to have it done in the next 2 weeks. I would love to have this fabric.


matate10 said...

I love your self portrait! It has such meaning in all the symbols. And thanks for the giveaway. Would love to win.

Benta At SLIKstitches said...

It was great to see the self portrait quilt again! Enjoy seeing all the giveaway comments come in!


Myra said...

I loved this quilt when you first made it and now I love it again. I really enjoyed reading about all the symbolism in this piece. It is truly a work or art Wilma. I would love to be entered in your giveaway - thanks for the chance.

Marcia said...

What a wonderful unique self portrait quilt! I didn't see it the first time, so I am really glad you shared it again!
Love all the May for Me Giveaways!
Good to see everyone enjoying May!

black bear cabin said...

what a wonderful portrait quilt...i really enjoyed the story behind it too! i love being one with nature too...which would explain why i live where i do :) im gonna have to think about a portrait quilt one of these days, what a great idea! (how big was that quilt...was it a wall hanging size?) and how did you put those little people on there...applique, embroidery, or fabric stablizer?
Anyways, sign me up for the giveaway too...sounds like fun! hugs to you Miss Retired :)

Anonymous said...


KaHolly said...

I am in love with your self portrait quilt. What an awesome idea. I seldom have ever kept a quilt for myself and am thinking that perhaps something like this would be perfect. I like to hike, too!! Now I'm off to peruse your archived posts. So glad I stopped by today. Have a great one!! ~karen

Michele said...

Hi Wilma! I lived in NC for awhile and I'm a Tarheel. That is a wonderful wall hanging....what a great thing to create.

quilter000 said...

Oh I would love to win the charm pack . Love your portrait too. One day maybe i will can decide what I look like LOL

Andi said...

Beautiful blog! And I can't resist a giveaway.

pollyanna said...

I love this quilt and love hearing again what each area stands for. Makes it even more beautiful. I was also challenged...I never did it (but bought the fabric!).

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

What a fabulous giveaway! Thanks for including me :-)

Suze said...

Glad Blogger is letting me comment!!

your self portrait is really many details.. (and not at all what I expected from the title of the post..)

Sheila said...

Very nice giveaway.
Congratulations upon your retirement. I have 3 and a half months to go.

Vesuviusmama said...

What a wonderful self portrait. It inspires me to think of what I would include in a self portrait quilt.