Thursday, April 11, 2013

Oklahoma Backroads in Bethlehem!

Bundles of Bricks!

Baskets of Squares!

Flippy corners and bonus triangles abounding!

It’s always fun for me when quilters experience an “AHA!” moment ---Each of the Oklahoma Backroads blocks will give you 4 bonus triangles that measure 2” unfinished.  It might not sound like a lot,  until you realize that if you are making the full quilt, that you will have 440 2” half square triangle units all ready to use in another quilt by the time this quilt is pieced. 

What could YOU do with 440 2” bonus half square triangle units?  You can do ANYTHING with them!

And of course we love the quilt that spawned those bonus triangles equally as much.

We really did have a good day and accomplished a whole lot….

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Ellen’s Elna!

I posted a picture of Ellen’s green grasshoper yesterday --- and here she is with it!  I am really fascinated with this machine…the case folds out to become the extension table….This machine was so well maintained it had all the accessories – the manual – AND the bill of sale!

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The machine was purchased on payment on May 28th, 1951 by Mrs. Ronald Van Zine.  Her first name remains a mystery ---it was a different era then, women married and not only gave up their maiden names, but signed their names by adding a MRS. to the front of their husband’s name.

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The machine’s purchase price was $179.00.  After her initial deposit, her balance was $142.30, which she paid off with a monthly installment of $11.85 per month.

Don’t you just love this stuff?  I do!!

Here’s the rest of our photos in the slide show.  If you can’t view the slide show for any reason, please click the photo below to go view the album directly.
Oklahoma Backroads, Bethlehem PA 2013
And the Slide show:


  1. That is awesome! Everyone looks so happy. Thanks so much for sharing the photo of the Elna. I love vintage machines. Love, love, love! Have a super day!

  2. Love the Elna! Amazing vintage sewing machine.

  3. I love the old classic machines! They definitely have personality!

  4. It is so interesting to see those old sales slips. And the slide show is so inspirational as always.

  5. I have an Elna Grasshopper, made in August 1948, that I bought 20 years ago at a garage sale. other than the sales receipt mine also was complete. I use it for community quilt day at my LQS. It sews like a dream.

  6. I was lucky enough to find a Grasshopper at a village brocante here in France last summer for just a few euros, and it also has its original paperwork and manual. It works beautifully.

  7. That machine is terrific. A modern manufacturer needs to adopt the idea of the fold-out cover.

  8. That was a LOT of money then!~ wow!~

  9. Anonymous11:34 AM EDT

    WHAT A GREAT POST... Super quilt and the Grasshopper machine.
    Bonnie, you are making me hungry for that little machine. I havealways likedOklahoma ... Each time I see it, I make sure it is on my do make list.

  10. Thanks for more photos of the Elna and the Retail Bailment Lease document is very interesting. That sure was a lot of money back then! I am continuing my hunt for a classic straight stitch machine. Sure looks like the ladies are having a good time.

  11. Don't think I've ever seen a machine like that before. I do remember though, the first time my MIL saw me write out a check and I signed it with my first name & new last name, "That's not right!! You're Mrs. So-and-So now." I had to inform her that I had given up my maiden name but I was still me and would use my first name in my signature. That was in 1970. I think she realized then that I was way too independent to suit her, but she learned to live with it.

  12. Too bad you couldn't get a video of that little Grasshopper in action! I would have loved to "hear" and see it run! :)

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  14. I did an Ancestry.com search and found the marriage record of Ronald Van Sine (Van Zine) to Claire J. MacWaters -- in Philadelphia, 7/30/49. I looked up Claire MacWaters -- born approx. 1920, grew up in Scranton, PA.

    The Van Sine/Van Zine confusion is because the marriage record is hand-written--looks as though it could have been an S or a Z.
    And the guy at the sewing machine shop may have misheard her.

    I googled "Claire MacWaters Van Zine" and only got references to the Ancestry entries -- but I haven't searched very assiduously.

    So, if Ellen wants

    1. ....so, if Ellen wants to name her Elna, she could call it Claire!

    2. Anonymous7:53 AM EDT

      Nann - what a great end to the story! :)

  15. Anonymous7:52 AM EDT

    Isn't it wonderful to see all those quilters working together. I would love to be in a room like that! The story about the green ELNA is wonderful. I love that Nann did all that research! What a wonderful end to the story!! Hope Ellen realizes what a treasure she has! Thank you for continuing to inspire us all Bonnie with ways to use even the smallest scrap of fabric!

  16. Love my Grasshopper too. Don't have the bill of sale, but do have the accessories and the case. It sews like a dream!


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