Sunday, July 6, 2014

a charley harper baby quilt

charley harper baby quilt
If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen my post that I suffered a miscarriage last week.  At 12 weeks along we found out that our baby no longer had a heartbeat.  It was devastating.  Of course this is a really personal thing to talk about in a public place and I didn't take the decision to share lightly, but this experience has been a huge part of my life and it feels important to share it.

After I found out on Wednesday that I had miscarried I came home and felt a little lost.  I still felt physically ok but I was emotionally drained.  I had a stack of Charley Harper fabrics that I had purchased to make a quilt for the baby and I decided to go ahead and sew with them.  I don't know if I will hang onto the quilt or donate it or give away at a baby shower, but making this quilt felt right.
charley harper baby quilt
I love, love, love these Charley Harper prints and sewing with them was wonderful.  I mixed in some coordinating solids and prints since I had only purchased a few of the Charley Harper prints and I ditched my original plans and decided to make a simple patchwork quilt.  I am glad I did since I had a D&C on Thursday night and have mostly felt pretty terrible.  This was just the small, simple, quick project that I needed.

And making this did help.  This experience has made me very thankful for my crazy kids and my supportive husband and it has made me more sure than ever that another baby belongs in our family.

The back of the quilt is Charley Harper flannel an I am really on the fence about it.  This is the first time I have used Birch flannel and it is a much different texture than what I would normally expect, more gauzey, and is a little rougher and thinner than normal flannel.  I prewashed the fabric and it shrank more than I expected and I actually had to trim the quilt top down because the width of the fabric shrank so much (did you notice that the squares on the left are a little smaller? ha ha).  I am hoping that this is one of those fabrics that will get softer the more it is washed.  Despite my reservations the finished quilt does have a really nice weight to it.
charley harper baby quilt back
The binding is a black crosshatch, I think it's from Lu Summers' Summersville.  I decided to us a zig zag stitch to sew the binding to the back of the quilt.  I hope that whatever I decide to do with this quilt it gets lots of use and I want it to hold up to washing.

Overall I am still sad but mostly feeling okay.  I am a still trying to rebalance things in my life and may be a little less responsive to comments and emails than normal so I apologize in advance.  I haven't even answered my phone for anyone other than my mom.  I know that many people go through this experience, almost all of my friends who have kids have experienced at least one miscarriage, and that I just need to take it easy for a little while.

Finished size: 40" x 48"

You can find Charley Harper prints here and here.

51 comments :

  1. I am so very sorry to hear about your loss. I know it can be a terrible thing to go through but I'm glad to hear that making this quilt has helped you through the process.

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  2. I was super sorry to read about your miscarriage, and I am sad for your family. It touched me that you turned to your sewing for some comfort. Bless you as you travel through this tough time...

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  3. I love this quilt, and I really love the backing you chose. Going back to what you love to do is a great way to begin your recovery. Creating something this beautiful has to be therapeutic!

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  4. Very sorry for you. I do know how you feel. By 12 weeks, you are bonding already with baby, and wondering what he/she will be like. Your body has been through a lot. Rest and iron rich foods are good. I will be thinking of you

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  5. I'm so sorry for your loss but so glad you shared. It seems this is such a taboo topic. I had two miscarriages back-to-back then it took me a year to conceive again. It was awful. Like you I was more convinced than ever that I wanted another and, like you, I'd already purchased fabric for a quilt. I held onto the fabric and did end up making one for my baby who will be one this month.

    Next to the sudden and unexpected death of my father my miscarriages were the hardest trials I've ever had to face. I hope you can find peace and comfort in the weeks and months ahead and know that you are not alone.

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  6. I am so sorry for your loss. Thinking of you and your family. Warmly, Kim

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  7. So sorry about your loss. I too have suffered this loss. Take time to heal, and also enjoy the blessings you have with you now.

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  8. I'm so sorry this happened. I had the same thing happen with my first pregnancy. I still think about that baby now, 22 years later.
    I love the quilt.

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  9. Sending virtual hugs to you. x

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  10. So sorry to hear your loss! I miscarried a fortnight ago, and like you I've found comfort in sewing a quilt. I'm making a simple 9 patch quilt to help get back into my natural rhythm. Sending you much love at this time. I've found the hardest thing is having nothing left to show for it all... So this quilt I am working on will be something to remember. X

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  11. I'm sorry for your loss. I still think about the miscarriage I had before Lu. I was heartbroken but then went on to have Lu a year later. I hope that as time goes on your heart ache eases. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  12. I'm so sorry to hear about your miscarriage, it is a hugely painful emotional experience. You are courageous to share it and I'm glad quilting provided some therapy. The baby quilt is beautiful. Hugs xx

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  13. I am so sorry for loss of your little angle and the heartbreak for your beautiful family. My thoughts and prayers will be with you and your family. Lots of Hugs XXXX
    The quilt is beautiful and sewing therapy can be a wonderful thing.

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  14. I'm so sorry for your loss. Wishing you happier times soon.

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  15. My thoughts are with you and family as I have walked in your shoes... twice. My faith got me through and over my hump.

    Lovely quilt and if it helped to soothe you, then it was the right thing to make. Be encouraged.

    tushay3(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  16. No words can heal your pain, but hope you find comfort in the love and hugs being sent your way.

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  17. So sorry to hear of your loss. Yes miscarriages are fairly common, but when you go through that experience it is overwhelmingly sad. I hope you feel better soon physically and that the wish to add to your family is fulfilled. God bless you.

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  18. Erica, I'm so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Hope things get easier soon. Love the quilt by the way. It's beautiful.

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  19. May God bless you as you go on. The quilt is so adorable and however you should decide to use it, it will be perfect.

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  20. Thank you for sharing about your loss. I love your blog and admire your courage. Your decision to make the quilt was a courageous way to grieve for your baby. You could cry and sew at the same time.

    My thoughts and prayers go with you.

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  21. Prayers for you and your family on the loss of this little one. Love your quilt and I am sure that it will comfort where ever it ends up.

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  22. I'm so sorry for your loss. I will be praying for peace for you. I love the baby quilt, it is beautiful!

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  23. Erika, it made me sad to hear of your miscarriage, esepecially since I know exactly how it makes you feel. We suffered through 4 of them, but on the bright side, had 4 healthy babies to love. Our family now includes, the 4 children, 10 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren, all of whom take up a lot of time sewing and quilting for, but also so much love to spread around. May your next baby provide you all with lots of love, hugs and sleepless nights. Oops!

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  24. I'm sorry to hear about your loss. The quilt is beautiful and will be well-loved once you decide on a recipient!

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  25. I'm so sorry you have lost your baby. I had 2 miscarriages before my eldest daughter and it was a hard, dark time. Be kind to yourself. Your quilt it beautiful. Take care xx

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  26. So sorry for your loss. The quilt you made turned out beautiful! I am glad it was able to somewhat help console you. Hang in there and know that your quilty friends are praying for you!

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  27. So sorry for your loss! Thank you for sharing your story.
    The quilt is adorable!

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  28. Hi Erica, so sorry to hear this sad news. Sending you and your family a big hug. Take care and look after yourself. X

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  29. My heart sank when I read of your loss. My thoughts are with you. Quilting is one of my many "therapies." So glad you had the activity to keep your hands busy and help your heart heal.

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  30. Sending so much love your way. I know that the sadness will linger, but I also know that you are a brave soul. This is a heartbreaking loss ... be patient with the healing. God bless you!

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  31. Thinking of you and your family during this difficult time. Your quilt is beautiful and it was a wonderful idea to throw yourself into making it.

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  32. I was so sorry to hear of your heartbreak. Quilting as therapy is so wonderful.

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  33. Out of your heartbreak you created a beautiful quilt. Wishing you a speedy recovery.

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  34. My daughter had a D&C last summer to terminate an unsustainable pregnancy. Each of her two sons were premature, with the second expected to be full-term, even more premature. They are healthy boys with no sign of being preemies. She says it makes her thankful for what she does have. My best friend's daughter was pregnant at the same time with a difficult pregnancy. They said some very, very uncaring things to me. Please take care of yourself and surround yourself with supportive people. I lost a husband (not her dad) the same day, she had her D&C, I found a grief group to help me. We all grieve differently. Erica, you and your family are in my prayers.

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  35. I am so sorry for your loss and will pray for comfort and healing for you and your family. Your quilt is a beautiful tribute to the love that is the foundation of everything you shared in your post. Blessings to you and your family.

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  36. I am so sorry for your loss. I've had a miscarriage each of the last two summers (and am at 5 weeks pregnant now and scared to death). Having something, a book or this quilt project, really does help after this kind of loss. You'll never forget, of course, but it does get a little easier. I will keep you in my prayers.

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  37. I just started following your blog two days ago. I was so sad to open my email to this news.

    Cry. Cry everyday. Releasing tears is healthy and while many people see crying as a weakness, it is not. Crying gives you strength to face your day and be present for your life. The quilt you made represents hope and strength to me. Stay hopeful, strong and present and lean on others when you need to. I can't wait to see what you will create next! Much love and well wishes to you and your family.

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  38. Erica, So sorry for your loss. I think it was very brave what you wrote. Talking about it, or in this case writing about it is sure to help. Do what ever makes you feel good right now. Quilting is therapy after all. Your quilt is lovely!

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  39. I'm sorry. I'm sure that's devastating. It is a lovely quilt. I'm sure whatever it ends up being used for or owned by, it will be a great tribute to the baby's memory.

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  40. I am so sorry for your loss! I appreciate you sharing something so personal and know that because of that decision you now have many, many people who are praying for you and your family...me included.

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  41. I am so very sorry for your loss!! You are such a warm and wonderful person. I am glad that you will try to extend your family again, after you have had time to adjust and mourn. Courage! We are all out here thinking about you and wishing you well. XX!! Lori

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  42. I'm so sorry for your loss. This is a beautiful quilt -I'm glad that making it brought you some comfort. Best wishes to you and your family.

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  43. So sorry for your loss. thoughts and prayers for you and your family. The quilt is beautiful and served a special purpose in it's making.

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  44. I was touched with sadness at your news. I suffered a miscarriage at 8 weeks in Feb 2012. It is difficult to feel normal for awhile but slowly things get better. I still think about it occasionally but am no longer sad when I think about it. I lost myself in quilting too. It's a funny thing how cutting up pieces of cotton fabric and sewing them back together can make such a difference to our emotional well-being but I'm sure glad for it. Take care of yourself.

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  45. I can say nothing to ease your pain. I have never had a miscarriage, but I have lost a child and it is the most devastating thing that can happen to you. You used your grief to make something beautiful that will always be special to you. My prayers are with you.

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  46. A gorgeous quilt. Thank you for sharing - it is important for women to talk about these experiences, because, like you say, it happens to so many of us and we need to each deal with it in our own way but feel that we can talk about it if we want to. Best wishes to you as you and your family move forward...

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  47. How completely devastating. I am so, so sorry Erika. Take all the time you need and all the naps and all the treats and any happiness you can find.

    So sorry you're having to shoulder such a tragedy. Hugs.

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  48. I am so sorry for your loss. Best wishes to you and your family.

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  49. Oh gosh, so sorry for you. I missed this on Instagram. I understand the feelings of loss and hollowness. Time is what you need to heal xxx

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  50. I just read your post and I'm so sorry for the loss of your baby. I hope you are feeling better. Allow your body and mind plenty of time to heal, but I know first hand that there will always be a small scar on your heart.

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