Wednesday, January 16, 2013


I don't believe we had a tree skirt when I was a child. The sweeping branches of the Christmas tree rustled atop brightly wrapped packages. No one thought it strange to see the foot of the tree nailed into a two by four stand or wedged into the CN bucket, coal packed tightly around the trunk.
It was all about the lights and angel hair. The blown glass balls as delicate as birds eggs twisted and turned and the bubble lights percolated amongst the branches.
Somewhere along the line though, the tree skirt began its steady but sure evolution. Perhaps a quilt or cable knit afghan was wrapped warmly about the base at first. Maybe the poncho craze in the sixties or the handcraft blitz of the seventies was behind it all. I know by the eighties, trees wore skirts and that was all there was to it.
This year, my daughter wished for a tree skirt and I seized the moment.
I trolled google images for inspiration. I scrolled past the round and lacy, past the red and green wedges, past the appliqued snowmen and flocked ruffles. A hexagon shaped tree skirt suddenly glimmered like a ray of hope. Here it was. 
I had been looking for just the right project for my dad's plaid shirts. Something Christmas was perfect, infused with sentiment as the season is.
I cut triangles from several shirts and stitched a hexagon. I backed it with flannel and quilted it with holly leaves and swirls. Then I took a deep breath and cut into the centre and removed a saucer sized circle of quilt. I bound the edges, bias on the curve and straight for the rest and viola, there it was. I didn't add ties because it lays perfectly closed all by itself. And more importantly, who wants to lay flat on the floor with their arms around the tree base and branches up their nose whilst tying a bow by braille.

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