Tracee’s Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

logo 300px1 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 MonthsFREE Tracee’s Project Quilting Patterns – click here.

Tracee 125px Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 MonthsI’m not a huge fan of my birthday. It falls on a really strange day, New Year’s Day. Instead of pouting about it this year, I needed to think up a way to make this year different. At first, my idea was to put together 36 packages for 36 people that have made some sort of difference in my life. As I started to write down ideas, it became quite overwhelming – what really could I put in these packages that would be unforgettable. The wheels of thought, they started turning, and it dawned on me that I could make each person a quilt. So hence, 36 quilts in 12 months to celebrate my 36th year. McCall’s staff has been incredibly supportive of this venture, so I’m going to blog about it. I started January 1 and here is my progress so far.

Quilt Receiver #1 – Dorothy

I met Dorothy last summer. I hang out on my front porch a lot in the summer time. Well, they are more stairs then an actual porch. I spend too much time outside when the weather is nice, but jeez, I love getting freckles.

Dorothy is in her 80′s and lives across the street or well, parking lot. She has a small white dog, I have NO idea what his name is because she calls him by his nickname more than his real name. His nickname is Boo.

I’m either reading or stitching when I’m sitting outside. Dorothy is a huge fan of reading, that is where we found common ground. She asked me one day if I’d like to go through some of her old books that she was giving to Goodwill. Duh! Of course! Reading a book and talking about it with someone is a great conversation.

I go over to her house and she hands me a grocery bag full of paperbacks. I reach inside and grab one. FABIO Romance BOOKS!!!!  Whoa! What am I suppose to do now?

I understand lonely. Not only through experiences of my own, but through watching my Grandma get older and not having a lot of human contact. I saw loneliness in her and what sweet older woman should be lonely? I took all of the books and have read several of them so when I go over to visit her we have something to talk about.

Dorothy, I think, is my number 1 fan. I get her copies of McCall’s Quilting Magazines each time we put out a new issue. She thinks I’m some sort of famous person because my picture is in the magazine. “Oh Tracee, I’m so lucky to have a friend like you! Look at your beautiful picture in a magazine!”

I think Dorothy will be very excited to get a quilt and I can’t wait to give her one, with of course, a few dozen romance novels to read as she cuddles underneath it. Which, I’m going to guess, in turn will end up back in my hands for future reading pleasure.

fabric1 225x300 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Fabric has been chosen.

I’m really into purple this year. I don’t know why I never noticed it before. It really is such a great color! Each quilt will be different as is each person that will be receiving one.

pattern1 225x300 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Pattern that I chose.

How great is it that you can download this pattern for FREE! This really is a great quilt design and it goes together in no time.

I started with making the 60 snowball blocks.

Snowball.1 300x225 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

2″ black squares on 5″ background square.

Snowball.2 300x228 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

I usually mark my fabric, but I couldn’t find my white pen so I eyeballed it.

Snowball.3 300x240 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Snowball.4 300x229 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Cut a 1/4″ from the sewn line.

Snowball.5 300x229 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Snowball.+6 300x226 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Press open.

blocks 300x225 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

60 blocks. I’ll iron them as I put the rows together, that way my iron stays nice and hot.

rows 300x225 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

I sewed 4 rows, 4 rows, 3 rows, then sewed them together.

BeforetheBorder1 e1357247214237 225x300 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Before the borders. I was having a hard time deciding whether to use the dark purple or the light purple. I decided on the light purple – it was better contrast.

topdone Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Not the greatest picture, will post a better one after she’s quilted.

closeup 300x225 Tracees Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

Close up. Hoping to quilt it today after work! Sherri Driver is going to teach me how to use the Handi Quilter long arm here at work! I’m so excited!

Quilt #1 – I’m having so much fun already! Can’t wait to quilt this one and start on Quilt #2.

Twitter hashtag: #TraceeProject

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80 Responses to Tracee’s Project: 36 Quilts in 12 Months

  1. Trudy says:

    I think this is an amazing and generous ontaking. I am just returning to sewing after a very long absence. But, you know I think I could do this quilt, I have never done a quilt. Can you tell me what the overall measurements were on this quilt as a finished product? How would you display this quilt? Wall-hanging or over the skirting on your bed? I think it’s ingenious what you are doing.
    Waiting to hear from you.

  2. Janny Baillie says:

    I hope as you take these quilts to the people that you take a picture of the person and yourself with the quilt. Wrapped up in it together. That’s what I do. Good luck and happy birthday. You go girl.

  3. Tracee says:

    Hi Trudy. Mine ended up being 60 x 61 – put there is a free download of the pattern on our site.
    It’s in the green text under the tracee’s project 36 quilts in 12 months. I’ll have to ask Dorothy how she plans on using it, if it were me, I’d use it when I watch TV. Thank you for the kind words!

  4. JoAnne T. says:

    What a sweet person you are to do your first quilt for Dorothy! Happy 36th and may you have many, many, many more!

  5. Helen Terza says:

    Wow! What an amazing idea! You a truly an inspiration to us all! I think I’ll challenge myself to one a month, of course with a special person in mind! Be sure to post a picture of Dorothy, you and the quilt! Can’t wait to see that.

  6. Norma T. says:

    Happy 36th Birthday. What a great and generous way to celebrate you and your gift of creativity.

  7. Deb Droog says:

    How wonderful. I made only one promise to myseld this year that I would get up and get dressed ready to go out if I wanted too. So far it is working but…now I look forward to 5PM so I can get in sweats.

  8. Kay McClain says:

    Part of this project is not clear to me but please do not wait until your next birthday to give the quilts away. We never know what will happen and it might be better to celebrate each quilt recipient and have 36 smaller celebrations to enjoy over the course of the year.

  9. Tracee says:

    Hi Kay! I’ll be giving these quilts to the people as I get them done. I’m going to give Dorothy hers on Wednesday and I’ll blog about it on Thursday.

  10. Glenda Johnstone says:

    Not a usual fan of blogs. But this is great!!! I will enjoy following you. I love that it is about other people who have made a difference in your life. Lot of inspiration here !
    One thing I am wondering is do you have a time line that you are working on? I am interested in how you are thinking about the schedule for this.

  11. Lisette says:

    Congratulations Tracee, Belated Happy Birthday, This is quite a resolutions and one that will bring great joy and personal satisfaction throughout the year. Keep up the sewing and quilting…I’ll follow your journey throughout 2013… All the best.

  12. Suzi says:

    HaPpY BiRtHdAy, Tracee (a little late but better that than never). Such an ambitious undertaking —– I wish you luck in getting all 36 done by January 1st. of 2014. I shall follow along with you but am only going to aim for 1 per month and even that will be pushing it for me. Love to you and to Dorothy – can we please see a picture of the finished quilt and the 2 of you – tomorrow is the BIG day!

  13. Roberta Kay Anderson says:

    How will I get to Your blog again?

  14. Tracee says:

    Hi Roberta, there will always be a link to my most updated post on the home page,
    Hope this helps! Thanks!

  15. Tracee says:

    Hi Glenda, I do have a timeline. It’s my goal to do 3 quilts per month and to not be working on more than 2 at one time. I currently have one completed, one that I need to hand sew the binding on and one that I will be quilting later this week. I think I’m doing pretty good since it’s only Jan 15. Thanks for following me, this should be fun!

  16. Brenda says:

    What a wonderful thing you are doing! You may wear your machine out this year! How fun for your neighbor and books too, yeah! I hope to remember to check back to see what other patterns you are using.

  17. Sue Davis says:

    Tracee- what a wonderful, year long project. I look forward to seeing your upcoming quilts throughout the year. I am new to quilting ( just a few years now), and am continually amazed at all of the terrific quilts that are being made and posted for all to see. Best of luck. I would make a similar commitment, but don’t think I could make almost 5 quilts per month and stay sane. Sue Davis

  18. Tracee! Wow. What an undertaking. I’m really going to enjoy following your progress & I just loved hearing the story about Dorothy, your first quilt recipient. Lucky you to get to work with Sherri Driver. I saw her trunk show at the Raleigh Sewing and Quilt Expo last summer and I was blown away! She inspired me to make my first pieced back.

  19. Shauna says:

    Wow, Tracee that is awesome! That is inspiring to read your blog. Dorothy is a very luck person. I look forward to seeing your quilts . What a wonderful journey!

  20. DeeAnna says:

    What a wonderful project. I’d like to do something similar but being 50 or so, makes it difficult. This is the first blog I’ve ever been interested in following..and follow I will. Love it all. Bless you for showing how to give.

  21. Susan says:

    You are crazy. Sweet, thoughtful, ambitious, and talented…but also crazy! Seriously, how do you find the time?

  22. Wow! I think I’m in trouble since I turned 50 at the end of last year. Never occurred to me to do something so philanthropic (is that a real word?). I’m excited to be part of your journey. Best of luck!

  23. Jacqueline says:

    Tracy doesn’t sleep, doesn’t eat, doesn’t care for the house, the husband, the kids, the pets, the garden. She just doesn’t have to work at all, except for her 36 quilts (kidding, of course). Has Dorothy finally got her quilt? Best whishes, Tracee, I’ll cross my fingers for you.

  24. sherry says:

    into everyone’s life there should come a Dorothy!

  25. Elizabeth says:

    Wow! I am impressed. I did something similiar at Christmas. Every one in my family got a quilt from me that represented something special in their life. My mom was so excited that she took pictures of the person opening the quilts and then she had the picture made into a porcelin Christmas ornament for my tree. She knows I love my ornaments. Thanks so much for sharing your quilt and cannot wait to see the other 11.
    Elizabeth in Alabama

  26. Elizabeth says:

    Oops I meant to say the other 35~

  27. SUSAN ELDER says:


  28. susan elder says:

    and i forgot to add my 4 brothers.

  29. Mikey says:

    Oh what a great and wonderful idea. I like to start quilting , it looks like a lot of fun. Im going to purchase a quilting book for beginners this week. I have three sisters and a host of neices that i think will enjoy a guilt. Keep up the great work Tracee. :)

  30. sue says:

    Wow…. what a great mission of love you have taken on. I love it. Very inspiring.

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