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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

It’s….well…Mauve!

**First Off!!** Yes, there is Quilt-Cam tonight at 9pm Eastern!

I've beenaughing myself silly this morning!

After posting about the stack of dusty rose fabrics that I was bound and determined to use up as a backing, my friend Jill sent me this photo with the following caption:
Bonnie....Found the perfect way to bust out the rest of your dusty rose stash!
((SNORT!!))  OH, I remember these rompers from the 1980s…WHAT WERE WE THINKING!?  Do gathered stripes and ankle bands and very ginormous collars look good on anyone?

And this is the era a lot of this fabric came from.

It was THIS kind of stash that I was trying to rid myself of by piecing it into a backing.

I finished the backing yesterday morning....and had a great time throwing in random blocks to spice it up!

I was able to lay my quilt back out on the deck before the siding guys worked their way around to the back of the house.  Good thing too – because today I wouldn't be able to lay it out anywhere!

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Not SO bad, is it?

Most of the blocks were gifted to me for my 50th birthday.  All different varieties, all different sizes – so showcasing them in something like this is really fun.

There are a few blocks that are mine that I never did anything with…..that feathered star in the bottom left is one, and the applique block at the upper right – as well as some of the spool test blocks.

I like to work pieced backings in long columns, so I can mount the quilt sideways and have the longest seams along the roller bar, instead of wrapping around and around it.  It’s still a crap shoot on how this will quilt up…but I’ve had mostly good luck doing it this way.

Oh, the size? BIG!  It is backing a 91” X 101” quilt!

But those fabrics..what a walk down memory lane!

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See this peachy rose print down the center?  1984.

How do I remember this?  Because Jason was born in 1983, and when he was 9 months old I took a part time job at the local Arts & Crafts Supply in Ontario, Oregon.  I made shop samples…and that fabric was actually used in a baby quilt I made that also included lace panels….ewwww!  But I loved this little print, and I still do.  I sewed like crazy on my little Kenmore ---and this scrap still looks as new as the day I brought it home.  Fabric is like that.  With fabric, it’s as if no time has gone by at all!

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Darkish dirty pink with dotted design –1982 Maybe?

I remember exactly where I bought this print..at a little mill end fabric place, also in Ontario, Oregon ---the same place I bought my first quilt book ever: Mary Ellen Hopkins, “It’s Okay if You Sit On My Quilt!”  I loved patchwork, but at the time I was making stuffed geese and sheep with little wooden legs, and this fabric was for them.  Why is it hanging around?  It’s such a non-descript color! It’s not really pink – it’s not really red – its not really brown….it was harder to use up ---until now!

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Dusty Pink Country Hearts!

Okay, I admit it…this came from a yard sale…it was huge HUGE balloon shades for $3.00 and there was yards and yards of fabric in it…and this was about 1990.  And it is still hanging around…..it needs to be cut SMALLER! LOL!

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Large Cabbage Rose print

THIS is the fabric that reminds me of the romper era from the pattern above….I never had rompers..but I do remember a dress with a dropped waist and a huge collar and big rose print like this….OY!  This fabric however started life out as a shower curtain.  And wound up in the “sorta pink, sorta not” use it up in a backing pile – and luckily there were only a few narrow strips of it left and that’s where it ended up in this quilt back.

Can it really be 30 years old?  Where has the time gone?

It’s now loaded in the machine and I am quilting away on a quilt for the next book – can’t show it to you yet – but I will as soon as I can!

I’ve been thinking a lot about fabric, current, and vintage ---and you know what?  

No matter how current the fabric you sew with today is…eventually that project WILL end up just like the romper pattern above.  Dated or Outdated – but we don’t have to look at that as a bad thing.  Enjoy the whole process.  Quilt in the NOW – with whatever you are enjoying sewing with, and let the future take care of itself, whether future quilters will chuckle at the use of your color choices, or the style of fabrics you liked at the time.  JUST SEW with what makes you happy. 

I can’t run around being concerned that something is going to be old school or out dated at sometime in the future. Because...it ALL WILL BE at some point.  We can't help passing from one era into another, and neither can our quilts.

After all – who is the designer of your quilt --- YOU?  Or the home dec industry that decides what is “IN” and what is “OUT” seasonally to keep you buying?

I’m happy with my back!  The only bad part is ---I didn’t use near enough of that pinky rosy old stash – I’m hoping there will be girl babies in my future, because I sure have a lot of pink backing fabric to use up!

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66 comments:

  1. I had laugh seeing that pattern. My adult daughter loves looking in vintage clothing stores. Not me! I'm afraid I'll find something that was in my closet when I was a teen.

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  2. That back is so pretty it could be a top!! That quilt could end up being a reversible quilt!! Can't imagine the time you spent putting that backing together!! I always make the exact number of blocks needed for my quilts. I should start making extras so I would have partially made backs!

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  3. Nice job! Love the backing!

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  4. I need to do that for the FRONT of a quilt! I have oodles of orphan blocks that I need to finally do something with and that is a beautiful solution you have there. Too pretty to hide on the back! That romper pattern is hilarious - not just the pattern, but the model's hairdo, too.

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  5. Beautiful back! Could almost use the quilt this side up. Actually looks better than some of the tops I have seen. And what memories to go with the fabrics. Isn't this what quilting is all about? If all we wanted from a quilt was a blanket, it would be so much easier and less expensive to go buy something at Walmart.

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  6. Bonnie -- even on children thoes rompers were a nightmare. Glad you were able to make a dent in the Mauve fabrics and I like the eclectic look but the important thing is that you are overall happy wiht it. Is there a quilt cam tonight?

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  7. omg... have always tried putting scrappy (primitive-style) blocks together by sewing across. A total nightmare, hairpulling, math defying experience.. But can see from your backing that the trick is to sew in rows. Duh... Thank you, thank you, thank you. I learn soooo much from your blog.

    Terry

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  8. Ohmigoodness -- I had a dress from that pink cabbage roses fabric, too. Mine was sort of a peasant dress affair, gathered at the neck and wrapped across the front with a deep ruffle at the bottom. My husband had a special "rule" for that dress, which I won't describe except to say it required wearing sans a critical piece of clothing . . .

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  9. Love the other front of your quilt. The pink/mauve has become a great backdrop for the orphan blocks, making them pop. I have a dress out of that cranberry pink with the blue/purple flowers, puffy sleeves, buttons down the front and lace.

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  10. I think the back is pretty! You turned outdated into pretty and modern. I did have one of those rompers, I still have that pattern in my drawer (why?!!! I don't know). As silly as it sounds, it was a comfortable outfit to wear for work although I must have been quite a sight!

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  11. Your quilt back it so fun! I laughed right out loud at the rompers...didn't have rompers but did have the dropped waist dress with large white collar...LOL! Hey we thought we were all that then!
    Okay but the thing that cracked me up...Miss Bonnie...I had made a shower curtain out of that cabbage Rose fabric too! Bet you can't guess what was in the kitchen? Oh those were the days weren't they.... And actually I am leaving for Boise in a few hours!

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  12. Looks to me as though the romper pattern was never used -- and that's a Good Thing! (I never had the figure to wear something like that, though I did make a dropped-waist dress that wasn't TOO unflattering (did the poofy sleeve caps detract from the gathered skirt? LOL).)

    I acquired some of that cabbage rose print in an estate sale purchase a couple of years ago. I THINK I have cut it all up and used it.

    Your pieced back looks magnificent -- in fact, I'm really curious to find out what the front will look like.

    Remember, what goes around comes around. In the 1960's those 1930's prints were out of style. When you have used up the last smidge of dusty rose and slate blue (in about 5 years??) there is likely to be a "return to the 80's" wave of nostalgia!

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  13. LOVE the back Bonnie! BEAUTIMUS!!! I had several components of that romper! Button up blouse with big collar with big puffy sleeves and a vertical ruffle too!! And I clearly recall capri pants with the cuffed and buttoned bottom. UGH

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  14. That is a great quilt back!! You know, I may still have some of that mauve with the little hearts on it and I had the big rose print in several colors. I made Victorian teddy bears with it for the craft shows. Still have quite a bit of it with the black background and pink roses. Was always going to make a Bear's Paw quilt with it, black tone on tone and a pink and black small print. That would just be toooooo dated now.

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  15. well, I didnt know you were doing such serious piecing for your baking! I dont mind and no wonder-0-I dont piece mine like that! :-) looks nice...I would love to see pics of quilting and the front ;-) *~*CAROLE*~*

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  16. I have so much what I call vintage fabric bought at estate sales. I was feeling depressed yesterday and thought I should give it up to Goodwill (they really don't want it either!}. Then your post this morning, Thank You, Thank You, Thank You! I now will continue to use what I have as quickly as I can and be happy. My quilts make me happy and if they make other people happy then that is a bonus. Love the backing!!!

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  17. I have a friend who had one of those rompers :) She could pull it off, me not so much! I still have some of those pinks/mauves, and in fact used some in a quilt a while ago. Most of them are from the early 80's when I used them to sew dresses for my daughter, who is now 31! So, I can't just get rid of them, they carry fond memories of an earlier time. Ah nostalgia.....

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  18. I didn't wear one of those rompers. I thought they were impractical bathroom -wise! I love your backing. I would be so happy to have one of my tops turn out so nice. I once bought a fabric wreath at a garage sale and it yielded yards of pink cabbage rose fabric strips. I also have that mauve dotted fabric. I'm always searching through my stash looking for backings for my donation quilts. Thanks for reminding me it can be pieced and still look great!

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  19. I still have some of that dusty pink with country hearts! I bought dusty pinks and forest greens for a log cabin quilt in 1990 or 91 and some it is still hanging around; now I'm motivated to use it up! Love your quilt back.

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  20. In some of your up-close shots, I LOVE the white fabric with the tiny blue birds on wires. Is that a recycled shirt? So fun.

    One of my favorite things about quilts? No matter how dated and unfashionable a quilt gets, you can always layer it under something else on a bed, and it's still USEFUL. And unlike some clothes, keep that quilt long enough, and it'll probably be fashionable again someday.

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  21. Oh Lordie, thanks for the trip in the way back machine Bonnie!! And your back is def front worthy in my book, thanks for the memories as "interesting" as they may be :)

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  22. Bonnie I just love the quilt back! I have a huge bin full of mauve and blue from the early 90's. I know what I'm doing with the blues but now thanks to you, I am inspired to use up the mauves too.

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  23. Bonnie-WOW! I still have several of those dusty rose prints in my stash too. Some of those are timeless! LOL!

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  24. When you said you were going to use up stash for the backing, I was envisioning squares & rectangles & strips of fabric. NOT this absolutely beautiful creation! Like others have said, it's lovely enough to be a quilt top.

    I graduated high school in '81, but I don't think I'd ever have worn anything like those rompers. There's just something about them that makes me think of toddler clothing. They don't happen to have snap fastenings in the crotch do they? LOL!

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  25. Bonnie, I had my doubts, but you did it! The back looks GREAT!

    And, yes, I had a romper from a slightly different era. It was a "Flashdance"-inspired fleece romper with unfinished edges that fell off one shoulder. Oy!

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  26. Dang! That back would be a front over here!

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  27. oh my! so much of that fabric also resides in my bins!!! By adding the random blocks the focus is taken off the fabrics and on to the *whole*. Great job and great idea, thanks now maybe some of my blocks and whoa fabrics can find a use.

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  28. I loved those romper look suits. I agree though, what were we thinking??? LOL

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  29. Remember that peach print....I had to make a bridesmaid dress of that one (and WEAR it!). The dusty pink prints were in my stash too as was that cabbage rose print was a balloon shade I made for my daughter's room. Oh, the memories.

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  30. Two of my granddaughters wore those rompers for Easter when they were 12 and 10...made by their other grandmother, not me!! Even the girls didn't like them! And your country mauve and blue fabrics bring back more memories...I made my first quilt with them...and the center block was cross stitch!

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  31. Bonnie, I totally agree with your advice to "quilt in the now." All fabric is related to fashion and fashion by its very nature is quickly outdated. That's why we have words like Vintage and Heirloom and Retro. So let's all just use the fabrics we love now and the heck with whether they remind us of dusty mauve rompers in 30 years!

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  32. Your backing is lovely Bonnie! Very cute. Happy Wednesday!

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  33. Too funny, I just found some quilt strips that had some of that same little pink heart fabric! Oh My! Love how great it all goes together! Love the scrappy feel! :-) Happy Quilting!

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  34. I became the keeper of a fabric stash belonging to a member of our little satellite quilting group that had passed away a few years back. There were many of those pinks maturing within. I spent some time, last winter, cutting them up along with those blues and greens that were popular back in the 80's and 90's. I have enough cut for three or four lap quilts to be donated to Cancer Care. That should keep me busy in the basement once it gets too hot to enjoy the backyard this summer.

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  35. I have to giggle at 'how many' of those fabrics I still have on the shelf!
    I took a pile of my orphan blocks and sorted by size. Then I started sewing blocks together log cabin/court house steps style (top and bottom, left and right sides)
    Then I took everything that didn't make it into a 'size block' and strip cut them on my GO using the 4 1/2" die. Sewed the strips end to end and love the result. Finished it off with borders and now this is a favorite keepsake.
    http://ozarkcastle.blogspot.com/2013/04/orphan-block-crumb-quilt.html

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  36. I agree with Cheryl. I have many of those fabrics in my stash. When I move to the 2 rooms downstairs I will separate the backing type fabrics and finally have my scraps sorted. I may find some surprises in that stash! Bonnie the backing looks great. I love it.

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  37. I so recognized a lot of that fabric. One good tip I picked up in your blog...... sort with intention for backing. I'm on it!

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  38. Absolutely amazing. Bonnie, you surely do have a gift or eye, whichever, for putting odd pieces together --- and have it all come up beautiful!

    Smiling at this backing
    JulieinTN

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  39. I thought you were showing us a new quilt top! Ha! Your backing is great!

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  40. Love the backing. I know you use orphan blocks, but this looks like the quilt could be used either side. Beautiful!

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  41. How do you handle the extra needed to anchor the quilt on the frame? Most say 4 to 6 inches on each side. This will be trimmed later after quilting. Also, sometimes mine get off center on each side. I would be cutting off some of lovely blocks on the edge. I would have left a plain fabric so it could be trimmed... Even on the bottom, the quilt is sometimes taken up while rolling and it is too short. I need to do this for a quilt back for one I am making. I can't wait to see how it turns out... Just a lovely back, it could be a front.

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  42. Oh Bonnie, I was thinking that the stack of MAuve fabrics you had piled up must still have quite a pile since you had so many blocks to put on your back. Oh Well. Maybe in another decade you will have all that used up... Funny. Thanks for the chuckle!

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  43. You definitely make the BEST quilt backs! Here's my blog post that I could not resist in response to the romper pattern. ;-)
    http://tlcquiltsandwalks.blogspot.com/2013/06/having-some-quiltville-bonnie-hunter-fun.html

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  44. ROFL....I had that pattern, never made it, too hard to use the bathroom and the cabbage roses = bedroom curtains with green and cream stripes for the ruffles! Saw quite a few prints that were made into bunnies, dolls and dresses for my daughters.
    Love the back and thanks for the walk down memory lane.

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  45. Oh my goodness...I bought dusty rose, and "country blue, and some pastel green" in 1989 while my spouse was at Ft. Lewis, WA. Never did use it for a quilt. But, you sure make it all look good in your backing. Thanks Bonnie for helping us see it's not too late to use what we have.

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  46. Looks great!! It's like a whole new Quilt!! Getting ready to go on holidays, but I hope I'll be able to catch quilt cam tonight, if not I'll watch it when I come back, not as good as catching it live, but I do love that I can watch at a later date!!
    Have a great week Bonnie!!!

    Gwen

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  47. I love your quilt back! I bought a roll of mauve-pink (what's the one with the sheen called?). Anyway, I washed the whole thing (a big no no for keeping the sheen) and used it for a back on what is one of our favorite quilts done in Martinique by 3 Sisters. I worried that the pink didn't match the fabric of the quilt but went with it and it is just fine and it doesn't contrast at all and works really well together. I applaud you for your good advice!

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  48. Your quilt back is pretty enough to be the front! Yes, I remember rompers. Ugh. We all thought they were so cute back then. Kind-of like some of the quilts I made at the end of that decade that started out on top of the bed and are now "hiding" under the newer quilt on top or being taken to the lake or beach to sit on!

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  49. Oh no - I realized after reading your blog that I have lots of mauve in my fabric stash and that's why none of it ever gets used. I have got to cut it up into squares and strips so it's gone, gone, gone for good - or at least I won't have to look at it in my stash anymore!

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  50. If that's the back I want to see the front (I know I have to wait for the book.) That's amazing Bonnie I would never have pieced a back just a fabric colour boring hey.

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  51. Hey, I can share a drawerful of pink thread to go with that wonderful backing! Organizing my drawers in my sewing machine cabinet not too long ago, I found I had 15-20 spools of pink, from baby to hot hot hot! My girls are 25, 22, and 15, and none of them were ever into pinkness (neither am I)! Where did it come from???

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  52. Great idea. Lay my dusty stash on the lawn and play with the fabric. I may draw a crowd and tell them about Quiltvville's Snips and Quips. Maybe I can learn a few new quips.

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  53. I have a one word solution to all that dusty pink/mauve/blue fabric from the 80's 'overdyeing'. Anything I don't like anymore gets thrown in the dyepot and becomes Magenta/Purple/Teal/Burgundy. Dyeing printed fabric works fine.

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  54. The back looks great!

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  55. Hey! I've got some of that same dusty rose fabric:) Nancy: rangerer@sbcglobal.net

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  56. The back is beautiful and certainly unique! WHOOT WHOOT to getting rid of tons of pink!

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  57. That pattern is a hoot. Love your backing. I'm not concerned with what's in and what's out, but with what I like.

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  58. Your backing is beautiful! I think it would make a great quilt top!

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  59. THANK GOD my mom wasn't good at making clothes! That's all I can say about these things! I would have been the right age to wear one too. WHEW!

    as far as the quilt top goes, I like it! I didn't like the fabrics on their own, but together it sort of looks neat!

    Good job Bonnie!

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  60. Seems to me that one big advantage of making quilts with Civil War or 30's repros is that they don't get dated...Maybe some day people will be making quilts with "80's Country reproduction" fabrics!

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  61. Wow...a trip down memory lane. I know exactly what geese and sheep you were making. I made a similar romper for my daughter (actually 2) I have some of the same fabrics too! We must have started quilting at around the same time. Thanks for the smiles and giggles!

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  62. OMG. I remember those collars... Back looks beautiful. Love the use of all the different blocks.

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  63. I didn't have a romper like that, but I had a dress with a gigantic square collar. I worked in a Piece Goods shop right after college (1984), and many of those fabrics look familiar.

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  64. I used to have one of those rompers. It was stolen when I was in a play. I came back stage to change out of my costume, and my romper was GONE. Funny now! And we thought they were cute back then.

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  65. That is the back of the quilt! It's so pretty. The front must be amazing!

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