Planning a project is a dance with many steps. It involves detailed thinking and accurate measuring throughout the design and construction of your project.  Hers is not a cookie-cutter model. Working with eileen is a collaborative process between her clients and herself. It begins with the first planing session.

-- Collecting the textiles or fabric to include in your project.

Clients bring clothing and fabric keepsakes to eileen’s studio (or ship it if a studio visit is not possible) and the project planning conversation begins. First on the list:  Sorting through the many items of clothing and saved textiles and dividing them into two piles.. a ‘Must Include’ pile and a ’Maybe’ pile.


INSERT TWO Images HERE, SIDE BY SIDE 4606, 4607 Piles of T-Shirts:  Worn Out   Too Small

Give me many garments to work with and I’ll cut them ‘tight’ with limited borders around the featured images. so they can all be included in your project.
               (Insert images of T-Shirt and/or pocket flap or shirt collar)
Give me only a few garments to work with and I’ll cut them with generous borders and fill in with fabric of your choice … new fabric that complements the textiles you’ve given me.

Images1470, Marla’s quilt that uses only 9-10 articles of clothing.)
Marla wanted the finished size of her daughter’s graduation gift quilt to be 60” X 60” so we added a border of blue and purple (her daughter’s favorite colors) batik fabrics to extend the quilt dimensions.

A messy pile of dress shirts... 

A messy pile of dress shirts... 

have been ironed and cut into workable 6" X 6" blocks of color.

have been ironed and cut into workable 6" X 6" blocks of color.

The result: Two handsome memory pillows...

The result: Two handsome memory pillows...

Turning colorful plaid dress shirts into two memory pillows was straightforward once we had determined the finished design. Using shirts from her late husband, my client decided that each pillow would feature fabric from 12 different shirts. 
The shirts were ironed. Keeping the grain of the fabric aligned with the ruler, they were cut into 6" X 6" pieces. One pillow, with her husband's initials, was gifted to her mother-in-law, the other, with DAD appliqued in the corner, was gifted to her son. Pillow dimensions:
                                                                                                                           * * * 

2- Prioritizing:  Making an ‘A’ Pile and a ‘B’ Pile
    A:  Must include
    B:  Could be left out if space gets tight

3-Planning the layout
     Images of T-shirts on the table or floor

4: Labels guide accurate cutting and placement once quilt/pillow construction begins

Some clients know exactly what they want:  “I want a bed quilt made from my daughter’s outgrown clothing. I want it to be this size, and that color, with these details, and so on.” Most clients, however, don’t know exactly what they want.  The decisions they make, as they move through the planning process, will determine the outcome of their custom heirloom ? _______. The textiles they have collected and saved have so much significance and mean the world to them. Planning a memory saving project involves a notable amount of emotional energy.

Eileen pulls out her checklist of questions to help her clients think about their project ________ :

      WHAT do you want your memento to be?  Quilt? Pillow? Wall hanging?
      FINISHED DIMENSIONS:  Will this be a lap blanket or a bed-sized quilt? Will it be a grouping of decorative pillows?
      UTILITY:  Will the finished piece be used actively and washed often or will it be on display, getting little wear and tear.
      WHERE WILL IT 'LIVE'?  Will it hang on a wall, be displayed on the back of a couch or chair, or will it sit on a bed or the floor?
Once these questions have been addressed it is time to plan the overall design.