First off, I have an Accuquilt Studio die cutter (with which I have a love/hate relationship), and I have a fan die for making fan blocks. For some reason I thought I would like to try this pattern once, but I knew I didn't have the patience to sew a whole quilt's worth of fan blocks. So I saw this pattern for a cat made from a fan block somewhere online and thought, "Eureka!"
Well, I wasn't sure about winging it on the shape of the cat head, because that can go seriously wrong, so the idea sat on the back burner (yeah, it's pretty crowded there). Then recently, my best quilting friend, the one who got me started on this quilting journey, called to tell me she'd cleaned out her stash and had some things for me. Included was a book of cat patterns, and yes, this pattern was included.
Because I can never, never just follow a pattern, I tried enlarging it – but then the seam allowances were too big. So off I went, winging it, and trimmed the sides of the blades so they'd have quarter inch seam allowances. It all looked okay, but the final fan was not a full 90 degrees. Problem. But it was close, so I figured I could make do. Ha. After creating the pedestal, hand stitching the tail, and hand stitching the head, I realized that the seam of the front of the cat didn't catch all the way and I had a hole. So I did what I always do, the only thing I could do – I threw the block in a drawer.
However...my neighbor's cat, a calico who served as a model for this block, passed on last week. I knew I had to finish this pillow for my neighbor. My son told me to start over, and I almost fell for that, thinking I'd actually follow the pattern this time. Then I realized that if I was willing to do all that, I might as well pick out the hand stitches on the head, fix that one errant seam, and restitch the head. Which I did, and voila, it's done!
And my neighbor LOVED it. She put the pillow on the couch in the place where the cat always slept, and they are much comforted with the pillow. Which is the goal of everything I sew – to bring people comfort...