Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Tree of Learning Quilt

Every year at my kids school they hold an auction to raise money called "The Gala".  They go to a Catholic school, so raising money and asking for donations is always an ongoing thing.  One thing that is kind of neat, in my opinion, is each class is required to come up with a project to be auctioned off at the event.  It was actually the highlight of the whole Gala and the projects the classes came up with were amazing.  Last year my daughter was in Kindergarten and I kind of got suckered into helping with the project (I don't mean it in a bad way - I love this kind of stuff!).  Anyways, my friend Katie L. and I came up with the idea to do a quilt and have the kids decorate a trunk to put it in.  As you can guess, I was in charge of the quilt. 

It came out better than I ever imagined!  I picked out different colored (subtle print) fat quarters for the "leaves".  Then I took some big pieces of cardboard and wrapped them with press n' seal and taped on the the fat quarters.  I went to Michaels and got some different color acrylic paint and some fabric medium (found in the same section as the paint) to mix in and make the paint permanently adhere to the fabric.  Then the fun and messy part - getting the handprints!  I went in and got each of the kids hand prints and wrote their names underneath each with a fine tip fabric marker.  I cut out each handprint and designed the trunk and grass.  I ironed on fusible webbing to each piece and appliqued each part - tricky at times with my small machine.  I was going to tie the quilt since my machine can't handle something of that size and I couldn't afford to have it quilted, but then my friend, Katie, saved the day.  Her mother-in-law, Joyce Crooks, 2 states away, offered to quilt it for FREE!  And...we only had a week to the Gala!  It was shipped off and she worked like a mad woman, mailed it back, and it arrived 3 days before.  It looked AMAZING!  The quilt and trunk made $400 for the school.  I wish I would have taken more close up pictures.  Now I'm trying to think of other ideas for next year.  It won't be a quilt, though!  If anyone has any good ideas, pass them on!

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