Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Memory Blankets

This photo of my two main fellas was taken about 13 years ago. When they started to outgrow their clothes I couldn't bear to part with them, nor could I box them up for the moths to eat. Instead I chose to make a memory blanket; comprised of 6 inch fabric pieces in four main colors of blue, red, grey and cream, this was a blanket we all came to cherish. The boys and I would snuggle up for story time, but first they wanted to know where each square, pocket and embroidered teddy came from. "Was that mine?" Over the years the familiar scent of babies has faded, but I can still tell you who's piece of clothing each square came from.
After the making of this first blanket, I've gone on to make many memory blankets over the years. Although none of my own baby clothes survived for such a project I did inherit a stack of wool blankets. These blankets were brought over from England by my grandmother before I was even born. The orange one became my childhood favorite. Over the years, the blankets became torn, stained and moth eaten. I was able to cut enough 6 inch squares from four of these blankets to create a new memory blanket for myself. And yes, it is as thick, woolly and warm as it looks!
I recently started knitting blankets. The memories of these are different; newer. I can look at this thick double knit stripy blanket and remember every sweater whose left over yarn contributed to its creation.
wool blanket
"Crow" pillow from The Wren House.
This puffy work in progress is knit entirely from left over sock yarns, making it both colorful and washable.
The latest blanket I made took over a decade to plan. My husband plays Ultimate and disc golf. The summer I met him he traveled across Canada to attend the Nationals. He loved collecting t-shirts from these events. One of them even pre-dates our 19 year relationship! Oh, how sad he looked whenever he wore one out and threw it into the rag bin. Little did he know, I rescued these t-shirts. For years I collected his tournament t-shirts and his first few hand made father's day t-shirts. This Christmas I sewed them into a giant t-shirt memory blanket backed with thick fleece. It might not be the prettiest blanket in my house but it sure has inspired some epic napping sessions.

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