Put Another Log on the Fire

Friendship quilts. That’s what this post is about…a quilt that travels from one friend to another. Several weeks ago it arrived at my house. Powell River to Mill Bay…it’s now back in Nanaimo where it was made. :)

In March 2001 a group of us gathered in Nanaimo to throw a 50th surprise party for my sister-in-law Tevis. Back then Mom and Dad still owned the 5 bedroom family home, making an awesome place for a weekend retreat! The theme of this party was friendship and we were going to make a quilt to share. Prior to leaving Powell River, Aileen and I dug through our fabrics for lights & darks, cutting 2 1/2″ strips and 3 1/2″ red squares. We were making 22″ log cabin blocks.

After dinner the marathon quilting began. We emptied the bags of strips and instructed everyone to pick their strips. There were 9 people participating with a couple of others looking on. Our grandmother, 96, watched the process and claimed that every thing looked wonderful! Our sister Judy revealed that she was allergic to sewing but could pour the wine! Two others, Natasha and Lee, left before the sweat shop opened! Chickens!! ;)

Most everyone attending this “Quilt til you Drop” party were novice sewers/quilters. These two to the left, Patricia & Angela, were speedsters, finishing their blocks as if there was a finish line to cross! It was awesome! We wanted 12 blocks so Pat and Joan teamed up to make a block in Judy’s name. (Wanda had come up with the idea to embroider everyone’s name in the centre of the red blocks.)

It’s definitely a scrappy quilt! Wanda, Aileen and I had made a Tyler quilt for Tevis for this birthday. Fabrics from that quilt were sewn into this quilt. I am so glad that I took pictures and actually documented this information because as I was looking at the maple leaf fabric on Aileen’s block (lower right) I couldn’t place it…it’s the backing on Tevis’ Tyler quilt! :)


On a sunny, Sunday afternoon in March we had 12 completed log cabin blocks. Wanda and I would take on the task of finishing the quilt back home.

We had decided to send the quilt to whoever may need a little extra love during stressful times. Tevis was the first to receive the quilt with the death of her father the following year. ”Put Another Log on the Fire” has visited with 3 other quilters and has now found it’s way to me. Why? Breast cancer!?! It’s a WTF moment…but that’s in the past…the cancer has been removed, I’ve completed the radiation and all that comes with it. I put this out there now because I want to advocate for everyone to make sure their mamograms are up to date. Early detection can save breasts and lives!

Anyway, back to the quilt. I was asked how I felt receiving the quilt in light of the circumstances. My first reactions were surprise and delight! The quilt brought back so many happy memories of it being made and people with whom it has been shared. It’s on my bed and it seems everyday there is something else to see…like did I really piece 47 six inch pieces of fabric to make the binding?! Yes, I did! I’d forgotten that. :) The quilt continues to make me smile and I’ll cherish it until I have to pass it along to someone else.

Happy Quilting…Valerie Raye…and make sure you’re up to date with your mamograms!!

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