AHQ: it’s been too long

It’s been an age since I made a quilt for AHQ.

Last year, to reveal the full depth of my shame. But I find myself without an urgent project, and AHQ has a list of 100 quilts for 100 Aussie Heroes by Christmas, so I held up my hand. Moving swiftly when the list came out, I’ve secured myself a great one: the only requirements are (as always) the size, 42 x 70″ to fit the ‘rack’, or bunk, and the brief: “blue and white, and be as creative as you like”. How great is that? Just when I happen to have plenty of blue and white scraps around the place…

100 Heroes Quilt design

I can get that awesome ‘roo fabric out of storage, too!

The corporal for whom I’m making this quilt is on active service in a rather lively area, it gets cold at night where he is, and the operation of which he’s a part is doing a difficult and dangerous job. He’s not just standing around being an awesome advertisement for military life… So I owe him the best I can do, in thanks for his service and the great job he and his fellow servicemen and women are doing. Nothing fluffy, floral or pretty-pretty in this quilt, either; he’ll be a fairly blokey bloke! The size format may seem stingy and skinny, but these quilts have to be easy to fold and stow quickly, to fit the rack exactly, and to be a sensible shape to wrap themselves in at night when it’s cold.

100 Heroes fabric detail

Fabrics for the logo detail. The print on the gold fabric is metallic, for a bit of extra oomph.

It does present some challenges to come up with a design that works, but I believe I have it, after lots of scribbling and rubbing out. At the top, a crest to represent his branch of the ADF. If the air force, then the Air Force kangaroo roundel (blue ring containing red kangaroo on white background) and a banner below with ‘Per Ardua ad Astra’. If it’s the army, a Dresden plate fan to represent the Rising Sun cap badge, with ‘Duty and Honour’ in a banner below. I’m waiting to find out which it’ll be; either one works. Below that, a background of fairly solid blues, but with white star blocks arranged in the shape of the Southern Cross constellation, which appears on the Australian flag and is a symbol of home to Aussies everywhere. In the bottom right corner, the corporal’s initials.

Somewhere, if I can work out how to do it, I’d like to add the following: ‘Pointy end towards the enemy’, which I feel applies equally to any branch of the Service… If any of my Australian readers has a sewing machine with an embroidery function, and you’d be prepared to create a strip of text for this quilt, I’d love to hear from you – it would need to be done within the next 3 weeks so that I can hit the mailing date to get this to my corporal before Christmas. My email address is on my Contact Me page.

Now for some quality time with cutting mat and ruler. I’d like to get the cutting done before I go into hospital tomorrow, but it’s going to depend on incoming information…


If you’re interested in the work of Aussie Hero Quilts, click on the button in my sidebar to go to their website, or in the link given in the first paragraph.  Bring some comfort and appreciation to our serving Australian Defence Force personnel with an Aussie Hero Quilt or laundry bag. For the U.S.A., please go to Quilts of Valor for the same work.

36 thoughts on “AHQ: it’s been too long

  1. Wow Doreen,
    What a great cause for a charity quilt!!!
    I love your ideas for this project and can’t wait to see what you do with it!

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s rare to have a choice of colours for AHQ, and since most of the people who get the quilts are men, you can’t really use ‘pretty’ fabrics, so I’m looking forward to working on this one, because I have exactly what I need already!

  2. I love it that you are personalising the whole design. Bon courage for tomorrow.
    ViV xox

    • katechiconi says:

      These quilts become mementos of particular operations or times in their lives, so I feel it’s important to make it as relevant as possible.
      I’m quite calm about tomorrow, massive amounts of sang froid, since it’s peanuts compared with what has gone before. Thank you for the good wishes!

  3. No “urgent project”? **gasp**

    • katechiconi says:

      I know, it can’t possibly be me! I have been replaced by a chilled stranger with no sense of urgency! But seriously, the next item on the agenda is already 4 months late, so another week or so is neither here nor there!

  4. tialys says:

    As you’re about to start cutting again I was wondering if you’ve used one of those ergonomic rotary cutters. I’ve just bought one – plus matching ruler with a groove in it for placing the guiding wheel of the cutter – but haven’t used it yet as it will be more useful for patchwork than for dressmaking which is what I’m ‘on’ at the moment. I didn’t know whether you’ve tried one as they are supposed to be very good for arthritis sufferers/carpal tunnel syndrome etc. I haven’t got either of those and certainly don’t do as much rotary cutting as you but my ruler of 18 years had some nicks in it and I had to invest in a new one of those anyway so thought I’d try the matching rotary cutter too. http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B004RCJKSK?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00

    Another awesome quilt on the way from you I see and, what with Avis choosing blue and purple for her F2F blocks next month, I expect you’ll want a break from the blues by November!

    • katechiconi says:

      That cutter looks bizarre! I’m not sure how I’d feel about the disconnect between hand and blade – I’m used to ‘feeling’ how the cut is going. It’s not too pricey; maybe next time I have to replace the blades on my 45mm cutter I’ll look into getting one of these instead and giving it a go. I like the idea that the cutter ‘locks in’ to the ruler to give you an accurate cut. I wonder what happens if the ruler slips….
      Glad you think the quilt works. I’ve just discovered the Corporal is in the RAAF, so it’ll be the roundel rather than rising sun logo. Shame really, I was looking forward to a spot of dresden frenzy!

  5. EllaDee says:

    What a great design and cause… I’m so pleased you came up with something to go on with 😉
    All the best for tomorrow.

    • katechiconi says:

      Thanks, and thanks! I enjoy making these quilts; you know that the recipient will make more than average use of it, and will be pleased out of all proportion because (s)he’s been remembered and acknowledged. Sometimes we get lovely thank you notes or emails, which really puts the icing on the cake.

  6. claire93 says:

    look forward to seeing this blue quilt take shape ^^
    and good luck for tomorrow

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s handy that it’s blue, seeing I had all the bits of blue ‘blokey’ fabric already! It’s a very different proposition from the other one, and I’m going to enjoy it a lot. Thanks for the good luck wishes!

  7. rutigt says:

    It´s a great work you are doing! I applause you.

  8. modflowers says:

    I must’ve missed the bit where you said why you were going into hospital, but thinking of you and sending good vibes your way for a quick and easy visit and a swift return home xx

  9. lovely fabrics in my kind of coulour ! I just love the one with the roo’s !

  10. Grannymar says:

    I love the colours. Sending good vibes for the surgery… I think it is already Friday with you. Rest easy for a day or three and I look forward to the next stage og this quilt.

  11. dayphoto says:

    This is neat, Kate! As for the surgery my prayers are with you!


  12. Wishing you a speedy recovery and quick start and finish of another lovely quilt. Can’t wait to see it progress. You heal first. :))

  13. Kirsten says:

    I can remember the last AHQ you did, surely it wasn’t a year ago?????

  14. Hospital? I hope it went well.
    I have my fingers crossed for an army Dresden plate simply because I like Dresden plates. My machine has only the most basic embroidery or I would offer. I am sure you will get a better one. Keep me in reserve for emergencies.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.