Tuesday, July 14, 2015


If you know me you also know that I am a fan of Bollywood music. The poetry-rich meaningful songs don't quite make a splash as much as the peppy foot-tapping numbers.  And while the peppy songs make me smile, it is the poetic songs that will often hit me hard.

There is the title song from the Hindi movie Fiza, which has the following line...
Maine tinke uthaye hue hain paron par, aashiyana nahin hai mera.

Translation - I am carrying twigs on my wings, I do not have a nest.
It is a poetic way of saying, I am wandering. I have no home. It is not that she is homeless. It is symbolic of her yearning and her rootless state.

Fabric Audition
For many years I felt that way too.  And whenever I heard the song, it struck a chord with me, so much so that I felt tears streaming down my cheeks.
When I walked out of my troubled marriage many years ago, I felt uprooted.  I went to school here in the US and changed jobs a few times. Felt independent and free but there was no place to call Home. I did not belong.  I just longed...for home.

A few at a time...
Meeting and marrying Paul was one of the best things that happened to me. Yet, I felt that I was still carrying the twigs on my wings. Only after we bought a house, with our savings, with both our names on the deed, and our stuff/junk in every room, do I feel like I have come home...my home.

Pink and Purple Houses
The messier it is, the greater the sense of ownership. (Yes, that is why I don't clean...but that is another story). Now that I feel grounded (in a good way), I can listen to the song without tearing up.

To celebrate this feeling, I wanted to make a quilt with houses. And I did. A few blocks at a time.
Some purple and pink, some blue and yellow, and the neighborhood seemed to come together.  Then I thought, this neighborhood needs trees. A treeless neighborhood would be sad. So I made some trees.

Fabric Scraps - Transformed
Won't it be nice if someone was waiting for you when you returned home? And that special someone would also keep an eye on your neighborhood. That is when I made this block.

My favorite house
I created these blocks a few at a time, using scraps, fat quarters and bindings leftovers. Bit by bit I built my neighborhood. The blocks added up and they waited, and waited some more.

Lots of Trees
Larger Trees - Assembly Line
Just like your home (and your puppy) waits for you and is there for you when you return, so also these blocks waited for me to come around and make them into a quilt!!!

The quilt is entirely scrappy. The gingham fabrics came from my mother-in-law's stash. The tree fabrics were remnants. Some of them were in fabric basket won at a guild meeting.  And when I wanted a specific color, I bought a few fat quarters.

Finished Top
The making of this quilt has been a journey just like buying our house.  Among other things, I wanted a north-facing entrance to the house, because it is considered auspicious in Indian culture. Paul wanted a house with a yard and without any Home Owners Association (HOA). Fortunately, we found a house that met both our requirements.

We are homeowners
However, unlike the house that belongs to both of us, the quilt is all mine!!!

Puppies and Angels

My favorite house and the tall trees
It is mine for so many reasons. It is wonky. The roofs are made with HSTs, that were all cut on the bias (wonky), squaring was optional (wonkier), and the overall quilt is not square (wonkiest).

Some houses had their rooftop points clipped in piecing.  I am sure no one will want that :-D
The backing is an old sheet bought from a Goodwill Store.

Wonky, mismatched fabrics, scrappy, crooked, tucks in quilting, haphazard, very colorful, eye-popping bright = Preeti's Quilt.

There are a total of 71 houses in 10 rows and about 46 trees. The finished quilt is about 70" by 90".

I am in love...
Paul: That house looks a bit crooked.
Preeti: Remember, there is no HOA.
Paul: Looks like there are no regulations.
Preeti: You are not invited to this neighborhood party.

Basting, in process
Used my favorite batting - Warm & Natural. I quilted it using curvy lines, after I used a decorative stitch to secure the rows together.

White Backing (Sheet from Goodwill)

Paul, the model :-)

The binding is leftover from a pillowcase I made for Divik, my nephew.
With the white backing and the very Christmas-y binding, I think I just gave myself a Christmas present.
Striped Binding
Christmas in July - how appropriate. Oh no, did I do something appropriate???
That is so unlike me, tch, tch, tch...

Here are few more pictures of the finished quilt.
Yes, Paul is on a chair!!!

Thank you, Paul
This block is for Jonesie, our cat
See the Angel?

Blue House and Yellow Dog

Here is the label.  I decided to call it "Homeful".  Yes, it is like Hopeful but it is also the opposite of Homeless. I have laid down roots...

Floral Door, Doors with Disco Lights - My Neighborhood, No HOA, No Rules!!!

Lots of Trees!

Did you miss me?

Lighting up my backyard

Puppy Love

Merry Christmas (in July) to Me!!!
Homeful is on my bed and this is the one I will be sleeping under every night.  I might even take it with me on car trips. Just like a favorite/familiar song that you want to hum on all trips, I want to make sure that I have my favorite comforting quilt with me at all times.

Right here, wagging for you!!!
Creating this quilt has made me so happy that I might just wag my tail!!!
If you were a puppy, what would make you wag your tail?  I'd love to hear your thoughts.


  1. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! The quilt is so fun and cheery, but what it represents is even more so. Finding roots, belonging, and feeling connected are such strong human needs. It is heart-warming to read about your journey and inspiring to see how you have transformed that into a quilt. One that has personal meaning without having to be perfect -- because we aren't perfect. The addition of angels, dogs, and cats is just wonderful, surprises in the windows. Thank you, again, for sharing your journey with us.

  2. totally awesome! I would expect to see it as a prize winner in a quilt show. So glad that you have your own quilt. - Sylvia H

  3. Absolutely amazing! I'm so glad you are keeping it. Not because it is wonky, but because it is helping you feel rooted. Your neighborhood is a happy place full of treasures.

  4. I love everything about this post, Preeti, from the name of your quilt (SO perfect, so ingenious) right down to the label to you from you... Love all the little surprises in the houses, I LOVE the trees (just ask my husband, he thinks I'm a tree nut), love the no rules quilting, the old sheet backing. Thank you for sharing all the metaphors and meaning behind this wonderful quilt. You make me want to make one. Your real house is pretty darn sweet too.

  5. It's wonderful! I love house quilts, and this one is something special. Enjoy both your neighborhoods!

  6. Preeti.... i LOVE this....
    it is so-o-o yummy!!!

  7. Once again you have found the right words for your quilt and your feelings. It is so heartwarming to read your life adventures and perspectives. I always feel like we have just had THE BEST talk friends could ever have. Wish we were neighbors!

  8. Love this quilt Preeti and the feelings behind the making ofit-thank you for sharing from your heart. Thankfully you found Paul and he has helped you get rid of those twigs and pleased to hear that you feel grounded. This beautiful quilt is so symbolic and what an appropriate name.

  9. Such symbolism in this quilt. I LOVE it & thank you for sharing your feelings with us. May blessing abound in your neighborhood(s). :)

  10. I. LOVE. THIS! Seriously, twigs on my wings, and your soft landing have me all jumbled up this morning! Sweetness!

  11. What a beautiful quilt! I love it. So many little details makes it precious. I like the decorative stitch joining the rows.
    Beautiful text too! :-)

  12. As I read your post I fell in love with your quilt and the little fussy cut dogs and girl really added a good pop of smiles to the finish. I was hoping it would end up somewhere like on your bed where it will be loved and used. Awesome, inspiration finsih!

  13. It's wonderful and so happy as well. I wish you great joy in your new adventure in home owning and I'm sure this quilt will have pride of place.

  14. It is absolutely adorable...so bright, cheery, homey and cozy! :)

  15. What an amazing journey! Your quilt is one that will always bring you joy, peace and belonging. I loved reading this post, thank you for sharing!

  16. Such a happy, wonderful quilt with a soulful story! Thanks for sharing!!
    P.S: I'm a Preeti too :)

  17. What a wonderful quilt and such a great meaning behind it! Thanks for sharing this very special quilt with us at #scraptastictuesday

  18. Your Homeful quilt is beautiful. Thanks for sharing the story of the making of it and the story of your journey towards feeling a home at last.

  19. Beautifully done! Thanks for sharing your inspiration and joy in the making of it.

  20. Hi! This is beautiful and super fun quilt! I like your colours and how the houses and trees are different. x Teje

  21. The houses, trees, dog, angel and the binding! Wow, it all looks so good and the quilting is just right for it too. Thanks for showing us and telling us the wonderful story that is the inspiration.

  22. I love your quilt, but more so I love the story behind it. You did an amazing job and I hope your 'Homeful' quilt brings you many years of warmth and joy!

  23. I love it! "No HOA.. No regulations" cracked me up. I think my favorite block is the red house with the blue dog who is standing, waiting at the door. My dog doesn't lie down at the door till everyone's in bed or accounted for. Such a bright, wonky, lively thing you made for yourself that expresses your sense of home and humor.

  24. Your quilt is amazing! I love its story and all the love and meaning you put into it. Thamks for sharing it with us!

  25. I found this post via Needle and Thread Thursday. What a find!! The story behind your quilt is wonderful. I love how much meaning this holds for you. No Rules/No HOA. That is fantastic. This quilt is just wonderful. I love the bright colors and the fussy cut characters waiting for you at the door. Preeti, completely awesome job here!!

  26. This is so beautiful Preeti! And a beautiful story with it, too. I love the name too. Just all around beautiful!

  27. I love your colorful house and tree quilt! Congratulations on a wonderful finish!

  28. Lovely house quilt! I want to sew this pattern too :)

  29. "Carrying Twigs on my wings"... that is so beautiful Preeti. I can see why it moved you so much too. How blessed that your life is so much happier now!
    I am in love with your Homeful quilt! Every bright and beautiful bit of it, but most especially the green house with the pup waiting in the doorway!

  30. Every single thing about this quilt is just fantastic! A perfect finish for sure!

  31. What a great post, Preeti! And a beautiful quilt! Love the quilting -- perfect for the quilt. Glad you've found your home in both the house and the quilt. Could you add a link to TGIFF so your readers can find us too? Thanks!

  32. It is such a wonderful quilt and I love hearing the story of the journey. Quilts with buildings piece on them are my very favorite so the thumbnail at TGIF really caught my eye.

    I love love love the home you purchased. It is so quaint. I hope you enjoy many happy years there without regulations. We too don't like to live places with regulations, so I understand. We currently live in the county (not a town or city) on ten acres with no regs. NICE!

  33. I loved this quilt as soon as I saw it! But once again, the story is what really grabbed me. You have such a wonderful way of expressing yourself in fabric and in words. Especially how the story unfolds and the pictures start to zero in on the details until it's all woven together. Thanks for sharing your beautiful quilt and story.

  34. I love this quilt and your post.I am glad you have a real nest/home and you are happy. The quilt is amazing and I hope it will comfort you for a long time.

  35. What a wonderful story and a beautiful quilt. Have a happy life!

  36. I enjoyed your story. Live long and happy in your new home under your new quilt. The quilt is fabulous!

  37. Your quilt has life to it and your story explains why. It is such a happy quilt!

  38. Thank you for your story. Your quilt is full of vitality, as I'm sure you are.

  39. Love your quilt! So happy you have home & a husband to share it with.
    I want to make a house quilt too!

  40. Yay! I think you're wrong about other people not wanting this quilt. It's fantastic. Congratulations.

  41. funny and bright and touching and sentimental... I love it from start to finish. Good on you! love, LeeAnna

  42. Beautiful and heartfull! Wonderful post. I'm smiling big time!

  43. This is just fabulous Preeti. It's so colorful and bright, and it just has a really modern flare to it. I love a neighborhood with no HOA.

  44. Beautiful quilt and what a lovely story to go with it. I just love your neighborhood!

  45. So touching, you had me in tears....Bollywood music can do that and your story was no different. It's a beautiful quilt....and since it makes you happy....its priceless! Zindagi na milegi dobara! Enjoy and make a pattern for your readers.

  46. I think when you leave a marriage no matter the circumstance, you do feel uprooted. I felt very uprooted when my husband left after 23.5 years and I was still in our house. I adore the house quilt. The wonky-ness makes the quilt very home-y. I adore the dog in the doorway. The flowery trees are my favorite. I have a house quilt on my to-do list and even have the fabric in a box. I just haven't gotten started on it, yet. I've had lots of the fabric for a long time. Now I think I'll have to add some trees and maybe some dogs and kitties to it, too. Thank you for sharing your lovely quilt. It is delightful and perfect.

  47. Hi Preeti. Your work and stories always fill my heart. But this one, my heart is overflowing with joy for you and your love of all life offers. You view life as so promising. Could you teach us all a bit of your thoughts. Thank you for sharing. This is totally my favorite story.

  48. Hi Preeti! I met you today at Parker's Circle Sewing Studio. I love, love your quilt with all the wonky houses. It looks like a neighborhood I'd like to live in. All the colors! Very nice.

  49. This is an heirloom quilt. It is what quilting is all about IMHO. I love all those houses and the fact that they are not all works of geometric perfection. They are perfectly imperfect, just like the rest of us :-)