Pondering Wandering Hippos

My first attempt at improv quilting is done; this will be for the grandkids when they visit here in Silicon Valley.  The batting is flannel, as I wanted a comforter more in line with the increasing temperatures.  This little quilt is light, rather bright, with a variety of fabrics, although many are of the same value, which in the future will be something I change up more.  But while I am very pleased with the improvisational nature of the front, it’s the back of which I wanted to speak.

Hippos from the past, making their presence known in the here and now….

So, about these peripatetic hippos; this fabric is from 1988, so old, but not quite vintage.  It was originally from my eldest’s crib bumper, but there’s truly no use for that now, what with bumpers being out of fashion, not to mention that my daughter and her hubby wanted their own choice of bedding.  A few months ago I ripped apart that bumper, salvaging the fabric and edging for other projects.  When I completed this quilt, I didn’t want to back it with flannel, too warm.  Then I saw the hippos….

What’s great about these hippos is their roving nature.  Also they are adorable.  And they hearken back to my first baby, who is nearly a mother herself.  I used this fabric to back a wall hanging I made for the nursery, and now it lives on in this quilt.

Ran out of hippo fabric, so a spot of burnt orange completes the back.

Ran out of hippo fabric, so a spot of burnt orange completes the back.

Something about hippos makes me giggle.  Something about this quilt makes me ache to finish the bigger improv quilt on the wall, so I can start another.  I think modern quilting will be my forte; it’s very enticing to slice into fabric, sewing pieces together without matching lengths perfectly.  I’ve cross stitched plenty of improv pieces, so I guess fashioning quilts in that manner was inevitable.  And I’m learning so much, like colour value.

Quilting was stitch in the ditch, leading across the quilt. That too was improvisational, as I meandered along the length, rows not always straight. But it was a lot of fun!


Best to have a good mix of it, so the quilt has some key pops.  Not much in this first attempt, but this is how I learn.  And my grandchildren won’t care all that much, while they crawl, spit, and drool on these cottons.

These fabrics are from my godchild's quilt, a few remnants from my bestie, plus some solids I like.

Fabrics are from my godchild’s quilt, a few remnants from my bestie, plus some solids I like.  The binding was scraps from recent baby quilts.

And one day they’ll ask about the hippos, and I’ll have a lovely story for them.  That those hippos kept their mum/aunt safe when she was a baby, and now wrap around a new generation with improvisational nomadic hippo love.

What better love is there?

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