Freebox Jeans Quilt Progress

January 29, 2008

NOTE: All posts on this project are tagged with “Freebox Jeans Quilt.”

Up until now, there were 24 squares worth of material cut, waiting to be pieced. The weather was finally bad enough, and I was finally bored enough to sit down at the sewing machine and put everything together.

Piles of cut fabric
  Piles of cut fabric on my sewing table, ready to go.

Cut pieces
  Cut fabric for one square

Sewn square
  One square sewn together

Squares laid out
  Sewn squares laid out

The squares went together in nothing flat. Piecing them together is the easy part, I guess. It takes a lot longer to cut them out, and I’ve only done about a third of what I need to. And then there’s the actual quilting. Bleh.

Looking at the picture above, I’m amazed at how much it actually resembles my preliminary sketch below.

Roman Stripe


NOTE: All posts on this project are tagged with “Freebox Jeans Quilt.”

Pendleton Quilt

January 15, 2008

Originally published here:

Posts about this project are tagged with Pendleton Quilt.

Pendleton Quilt – next up in theory

Pendleton Blanket
  Pendleton blanket

Since living in Portland, I’ve collected several ruined Pendleton shirts and have been looking for a way to use them. I like the idea of making an authentic Oregon quilt, and those hokey, earnest woolen shirts were made in the state. They’re a genuine institution. Made here; worn here; worn out here. Now they’ll be refashioned here into a memory of this place.

Pendleton Blanket
  Pendleton Blanket

Unfortunately, plaids, much as I love them, are hard to work into a pattern. The answer came from a book of Turkish carpets, of all places, where I saw a collection of riotous but paradoxically hamonious mixed patters on individual rugs. Everything was simply arranged in neat bands across the field, and in that way they reminded me of that other Pendleton institution, their blankets (like those above). How perfect.

Pendleton Blanket
  Pendleton Blanket

So I’m (theoretically) going to use pieced strips, with the plaids cut at a 45 degree angle, creating dynamic diagonals in the stable and symetrically aranged parallel bands.

I’m not so sure about this idea, and I need more shirts before I get started anyway. We’ll see.

Freebox Jeans “Roman Stripe” Quilt

January 15, 2008

Originally published at:

All posts on this project are tagged with “Freebox Jeans Quilt.”

Freebox Jeans “Roman Stripe” – in progress

Frebox Jeans Quilt

One of the most common — and useless — things I see in freeboxes around Portland are “old” jeans that were fashionable a few weeks ago. But alas, that was a few weeks ago; so out they go. The durable denim is still perfectly useful; so I wanted to find find a way to use it.

I was also thinking about a quilt pattern in monochromatic light & dark contrasts, rather than different colors. Faded and unfaded jeans would lend themselves to that reasonably well. So all of last summer I collected them — a couple of dozen pairs at least.

The design, which is a traditional pattern, is called “Roman Stripes” and was inspired by one of the Gee’s Bend quilts. The image above is a sketch of it. On the left below is how I think it’ll look when done, and on the right is the one that inspired me.

Roman StripeGees Bend Roman Stripe

Street Sheets Quilt

October 15, 2004

Originally published here:

Street Sheets Quilt – 2004

Street Sheets Quilt

Just what it sounds like, this is a quilt made from sheets that I found on the street in Portland. Instead of tossing it in the trash, people here often put stuff they don’t want anymore out on the sidewalk for others to pick up. I wanted to experiment with a faster construction method, and these offered the perfect materials. So when my roommate asked me to donate something to an environment themed art show, I (foolishly) volunteered to make a quilt out of “recycled” fabrics.

With only a couple of weeks to go, I chose the simplest pattern — stripes –and tried out my new technique, which involves piecing the front while simultaneiously quilting all the layers together to a sturdy old blanket in the middle. It worked just fine, though it would probably be better for a traditional “crazy” quilt, where there are a lot of random, odd shapes.

Not surprisingly, no one at the show was really interested in buying the quilt. But as luck would have it, the holidays came soon after, and guess what my boyfriend got for Christmas. (He had already been sleeping under it for a couple of months anyway.) Since we’re not together anymore, I’m guessing that this quilt is now slowly deteriorating in the belly of a landfill somewhere in the Pacific Northwest.

Ah well, lesson learned.