Wednesday, April 29, 2015

And Then There Were The OLDIES!

I'm talking QUILTS of course...not us people!

Sometimes there are reasons that some tops are NEVER to be quilted.

Take this one for example – and a great example it is!

Because this wonky free form top including hexagons and strings blocks would in no way EVER ((And yes, I mean EVER, no NEVER!!)) lay flat ----or be SQUARE for that matter ((heheheh!)) We have the ability to study it from the back side as well as the front.

Was this two piles of blocks that someone inherited and tried to combine together? We will never know…but what we do know can be seen on the back of the string blocks:


Judges Protected by Public and Law!


Wanna buy a car --- CHEAP!?

This quilter didn't know to use a smaller stitch when piecing either..can you you see the stitches just below KERR MOTOR CO?  Large stitches make paper extremely difficult to remove, so when string piecing on paper -- turn that stitch length to TINY!


All of these are not like the others!


Put a Hexie on it!

I think we were told that there were dates on the newspaper foundations dating those blocks to 1950-something.  But the fabrisc and blocks could be older….It was just fun for a study in “Who needs to measure?!”  And we all got a giggle.


Gwin’s Grandmother made her this lovely – and it includes some of her childhood clothing!


Another made with the same pattern.

Love those string tulips!


Another gorgeous hexie beauty!

Check out the edges on this one….this quilt was appliqued to a pink border…those edges are wild!  The fan quilting is lovely, isn’t it?  I love this quilting so much more than just quilting 1/4” from the edges of each hex.  It also anchors the seams where the hexes are joined….this quilt has survived so well because of the dense quilting that crosses the seam lines.


Antique Cactus Baskets!


More fan quilting!

And I love places where they substituted one fabric for another:


Hello Red polka dot!

And certainly no one will notice that one green gingham diamond is of smaller scale?

This is what I love about quilts that truly came from the scrap bag.  If you ran out, you found something close – and it left a bit of unpredictability that makes my heart smile.  Otherwise it would just be predictably boring, right?


Another lovely hexie top!


Sweet 1940s!

This one is Lexi’s…and she is going to quilt it herself…I can’t wait to see what she does with it!

It is such inspiration to have wonderful vintage quilts present in our show & share.  Quilts like this give me a reality check on what is really necessary for a terrifc scrap quilt.

Matched fabric lines from one designer?  NO!

Fabric from all one manufacturer?  NO!

The latest greatest thing fresh off the bolt newly presented from Quilt Market?  NO!

Four things that make up a great scrap quilt for me ---  Think of it as CC & VV!  Color, Contrast, Value ((As in light/dark)) and most of all VARIETY!  If you combine all of these four in your quilt – you’ll have a stunner for sure, and it won’t look like anyone else’s jelly roll or kit quilt.

Applique with my feet up!

I stitched this down last night while watching some TV with the family.  Applique isn’t all that bad, it just takes some prep work – one thing time is sorely lacking for in my life!  But appliqueing English Paper piecing is easy..the edges are already turned under..just pin it on and go!

This is the center of the project I’m teaching in Tuscany with my 40 travelers – getting so excited now!  SATURDAY!  Oh, so much to do.

Don’t forget – Quilt-Cam THURSDAY ((That’s tomorrow, folks!)) evening at 9pm EST.

Have a great Wednesday!

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  1. I need some Long Road trips to get the Hand Stitching bug satisfied in me. I Love english paper-piecing. The ladies on the Tuscany trip are sew lucky!

  2. The quilter who made the wonky top could have never dreamed that her top would now be viewed and admired by so many people!

  3. What a TREAT to see these old time quilts and quilt top. Think of the ladies making them - maybe listening to the radio or sitting with the family while piecing. NO TV, NO Internet etc. Perhaps they would swap pieces with friends. Or when they shortened a skirt or dress have saved the pieces cut off. Back then you bought a dress expecting to have to re-hem it! What did some of the fabrics mean to the person piecing? SUCH memories can't be bought, can they?

    Thanks for quilters for bringing these to you Bonnie. And thank you for posting them here.


  4. Great post...love those old quilts and tops! I'll have to remember the CC and VV!
    Are those peanuts on the white on white from the class sample?

  5. Wonderful post Bonnie. I love seeing old quilts, lots of inspiration! Thank you for sharing.

  6. Hi Bonnie,
    I once bought a set of old string blocks in Lynchburg TN. The newspaper on the back has some very interesting things like an ad for Home Markets where the cotton sells for 5¾ c.; the story of Lizzie Borden's trial; and an article about the Kaiser's love affair. The oldest date on the newspapers is February 29, 1895. Leap Year! Such fun to read!

    Mary Lines


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