First and foremost, Al Magurn was a man of service. Loyal to the core, Al served in the military for 35 years and was devoted to his life partner, Leslie, for 56 years. It made complete sense, then, to incorporate his “dress blues” and his “dress greens” into two quilts to be made in his memory. I created a custom quilt design inspired by the gold stripes on the sleeve of his uniform.
In addition to his army uniforms, Leslie sent me a selection of his dress shirts and a collection of his colorful neckties.
I detached and incorporated the gold ribbon that ran down the outside of his dress blues trousers into one of the quilts.
I chose to combine many of Al’s blue shirts and ties into the first quilt.
I used a scale template for all of the block construction to make sure the stripe angle remained consistent throughout.
Here is the gold trouser ribbon re-incorporated into one of the blocks.
This is the quilt schematic I designed and followed closely so I knew how many right and left leaning striped blocks to make.
Based on the amount of fabric from the uniforms and shirts, some blocks had to have dark backgrounds, and others needed to be light.
In the box of Al’s garments, Leslie had included a small collection of patches and embroideries that had personal significance to Al. Among these were a Patriots jacket, a Concord Police patch, and some additional patches from his Army uniforms. I pieced these together for the center back of the quilt.
Here is the finished quilt, Al’s Dress Blues, followed by a detail.
For the second quilt, I combined his green army uniform, plus many of his more colorful shirts and ties.
I loved playing with the colors, patterns, and prints in this quilt. The green uniform did not yield as much fabric, so I kept it to just the stripe areas.
Here is the beginning of the patchwork design for the backing, using patches from Al’s uniforms.
And here is the center all stitched together.
The final quilt was just lovely. I named it, Al’s Colors.
Here is the detail, complete with a Looney Tunes necktie peeking through.
I can’t thank Leslie enough for her courage in allowing me to transform her keepsakes into these quilts. R.I.P. Al Magurn.