Memory Quilts…so many options


I’ve got Memory Quilts on the mind. You know, quilts made from the clothing of a special person who has passed away (see photo on left) or quilts made from clothing commemorating a special event or time in one’s life such as high school swim meets or a collection of receiving blankets for a baby.

I’m teaching a class in Reno at the start of November through our local community college. It’s a beginning class for folks who may (or may not be) quilters or even sewists. If you’re interested there’s still time to sign up. You can go HERE for all the details. 

I want to help people put important clothing items to use instead of keeping them locked away in boxes or drawers. I want people to enjoy them in the form of a quilt, wall hanging or pillow in which they can snuggle up with the memory of their favorite person or remember that special event every time they see it!

Of course, there’s so MANY different types of clothing that can be used. It’s hard to know how to where to start when teaching this subject. Men’s dress shirts are an extremely popular item of clothing for a memory quilt. There’s also men’s ties, jeans, uniforms, t-shirts and on and on. Really, there’s no limit to what can be used.

revised blocks

With just a few snips and some time at the sewing machine, you can transform just about any three dimensional item of clothing into a two dimensional (flat) quilt!

I’ve been mulling over the kinds of students who will sign up. I’ve purposely encouraged non-quilters to come. I don’t want people to think they can’t do this just because they’re not a quilter.

A friend of mine recently lost her husband to cancer. She decided to make a memory quilt even though she is not a quilter and hasn’t sewn for a number of years. She did a little research and put together a Fabulous quilt all on her own. I was so impressed with her work. Now night or day she has a way to envelop herself in memories of her husband.

I’m not sure a lot of people are aware of the fact that quilts can be made from old clothing. I think even less people are aware of how these quilts can be part of the grieving process. When my own father died, my mom made a memory quilt from his button down shirts. It’s just a very special reminder  of him.

Shirt Quilt

Here is an example (at left) of a quilt I was making from men’s dress shirts. I don’t think people want to save every scrap of clothing but there are definitely pieces that are keepers and items that remind you of someone every time you see it. These are the items to put in a memory quilt.

More to come on Memory Quilts. Thanks for stopping by.

Heather :)



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  1. Very nice. You even matched the plaid!

  2. Great ideas! I love anything denim.

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