We got some news last week that an old friend and colleague of Adam’s had a stroke, and he’ll be in the hospital for a while. It was a shock; even though we hadn’t seen him in a few years, it was hard to imagine this vital man in his 40s having such a major health crisis. From what we hear the damage wasn’t as bad as it could have been, and we’re planning on visiting him this coming weekend. And so I’ve started doing the only thing I know how to do when there’s bad news: I’m making him a quilt.

But all my delicious prints didn’t quite feel appropriate for a Man Gift. So I went out over the weekend and collected various suiting and shirting fabrics from places like Stitch ‘n Sew, a cave of fabric wonders that requires much digging and squeezing through narrow aisles filled with everything from gabardine to satin. I discovered that shop when I worked in Lakewood at the public library, and once in a while you just have to make a pilgrimage there.

So, these are the fabrics I assembled during my adventuring:

That gray/brown striped shirting fabric is for the backing, everything else will be pieced into the front. I’ll admit that some of these are lady suiting fabrics, but I made the executive decision that this was no time for semantics.

I got the idea from Martha Stewart’s Encyclopedia of Sewing and Fabric Crafts, and it basically involves cutting these fabrics into 4″, 8″, and 10″ strips then piecing them together how you see fit. The directions are surprisingly vague if you don’t already quilt, but I’m actually really enjoying the improvisational nature of it–that’s how I love to quilt anyway. So far I have my 4″ strips pieced:

It comes together really quickly, so I’m hoping I’ll have it done by the weekend. We shall see.