Retirement Quilts- Maj Scott, USAF

Military Retirement Quilt with Memory Quilt Squares | Recycled Uniforms | Jen Eskridge | ReannaLily Designs | ReannaLily Quilts

Recently, Maj Scott contacted me regarding her upcoming retirement from the USAF. She had a grand idea to combine all types of her military uniforms, from 20+ years of service, with her daughter’s blankets to create two quilts. The quilts will then be presented to her daughter’s at her retirement ceremony. Pretty neat, right?

She brought by a collection of fuzzy, soft, snuggly blankets that the girls’ had used as babies. A few of the blankets were embroidered with each daughter’s name. Awe. She also dropped off a wonderful collection of military uniforms, which she no longer needed.

I carefully cut the blankets and uniforms into 10″ squares. Though I had a grand plan for a more complicated pattern, once I dove into the design and stitching portion of making these quilts, it was clear that the snuggly, fuzzy, blankets were too stretchy and shifty to cut precise smaller shapes. That’ll be ok.

Each new quilt is 7 squares by 9 squares. Yes, roughly 70″ x 90″ for each little daughter.

Military Retirement Quilt with Memory Quilt Squares | Recycled Uniforms | Jen Eskridge | ReannaLily Designs | ReannaLily Quilts

See those little bibs? She had a couple saved,and I was able to machine stitch them to darker jungle camo prints for high contrast.

Military Retirement Quilt with Memory Quilt Squares | Recycled Uniforms | Jen Eskridge | ReannaLily Designs | ReannaLily Quilts

(my logo watermark isn’t on the quilt, just the picture)

In all the cases where a pocket was saved, I made sure that the pocket could be used. Not only is this quilt a serious memory, tear-jerking overload, but she can also hide messages in the pockets to each girl. Awe.

Military Retirement Quilt with Memory Quilt Squares | Recycled Uniforms | Jen Eskridge | ReannaLily Designs | ReannaLily Quilts

After removing the name, rank and branch of service tapes, I restitched them to the center of uniform blocks.  See the eyelet fabric at the top-center of the photo below? That fabric was part of another actual small quilt gifted to the girls by their grandmother. I was able carefully unstitch that piece to incorporate two pieces of the eyelet fabric in each quilt.

Military Retirement Quilt with Memory Quilt Squares | Recycled Uniforms | Jen Eskridge | ReannaLily Designs | ReannaLily Quilts

Once the quilts were loaded onto the longarm, the quilted up very quickly. Of course, this will be the project where I look back wishing I had one of those “glide” or “bowl” presser feet for my machine. I hit a few heavy seams and nicked the tip of my left index finger. (Phew, no blood on the quilt!!!!) Glide foot is in my future!

Military Retirement Quilt with Memory Quilt Squares | Recycled Uniforms | Jen Eskridge | ReannaLily Designs | ReannaLily Quilts

There will not be a dry eye in the house! I love her sentimental idea. Congratulations, Maj Scott, and thank you for your service!!