Friday, September 06, 2019

Antiquing my Way to PA!

A road trip day of travel and antique mall wandering!  Bliss!

Destination?  Orrsville, Pennsylvania and the Quilt Odyssey Fall Retreat!

It’s amazing how a day of driving – even a LONG day can feel a bit more restful and recharging than sitting on a plane across country.  The same amount of travel time – a world of difference.  I left Mouth of Wilson bright and early -

If I was going to have time to explore, I needed to keep my eye on my retreat arrival time and adjust accordingly.

My favorite rest stop on I-81 – Verona, Virginia!

If you stop here – you better give yourself 2 hours!

And prepare to catch your breath at every turn!

There are a lot of antique malls out there that frankly look like someone’s garage sale leftovers.  And there is “some” of that here too – but for the most part, the booths are inviting and not too overcrowded with paraphernalia and you can SEE what each item of interest is.

And be sure to look UNDER things – or you might miss something special!

Puss in the Corner crib quilt.

So simple and classic – lovely!

There were un-quilted tops -

Solid red really calls to me!

Ran out of blue? No problem!

Just throw in a red stripe!

Simple 9 patch – red background. 

Like coming home!

Tattered red log cabin - 

Love that backing fabric!

Interesting mounted wool stitchery -


Could this wool have been army blankets?

From Irish chains in blue and pink -

To one in red and yellow -

I can’t wait to get to retreat – this girl wants to sew!

Tall triangles in velvet. (This weighs a ton!)

Mid-century prints with aqua!

Interesting baskets arrangement -

And the quilts kept coming!

An ever classic LeMoyne Star.

Pinwheel stars – GREAT use of stripes!

The prettiest of 1930s butterflies.

When it comes to double wedding rings -

I love the rings squashy and square-ish – like this!

I may be in Virginia – but this is a Carolina Lily!

This one – Oh this one!

I think this is my favorite of all – My Scrappy Heart Sings!

But the most INTERESTING one of all?

This log cabin!

It’s a Courthouse Steps variation with a square in a square in a square in the center – and it is fabulously fun just from the top – (Yes, it’s only a top, it was never completed.)

But by it being “only” a top – we can see what was used for the backing foundation – Check this out:

What do I see here?  FLAG?!

Sure enough!

This maker cut up an old flag and used it as foundation for her log cabin blocks!  if you look at the two red stripe fabrics in the second row up – this flag had also been patched numerous times before being relegated back to fabric status.

Was this “kosher?”  I always thought we were supposed dispose of flags in a more reverent way – but then look at when this quilt could have been made?  These are 1800s prints.

When women couldn’t own property, and didn’t even have the right to vote yet – could the making of this quilt top using the flag as foundation be a political statement in a very subversive way?  

We will never know – but I’m sure glad that the quilt was never backed, quilted and bound, because we’d never know that there was a cut up flag inside.

Isn’t it just SO fascinating?

If you’ve stuck with me this far – I thank you for taking the time to see all of these.  There was more, so much more, but I’ve got to get myself to class, so we will save the rest for another time.

Retreat is in full swing!

Daybreak is our 2 day workshop, and we took some evening time last night for the introduction and to let those who wanted to get an early start.  We officially dig in after breakfast this morning.

And as a nod to the Pennsylvania buzz phrase – we are ALL Pursuing our Happiness!

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

I love teaching at retreats for the million friendship opportunities they give!

I can already hear the quilters up and stitching - it's time to get this day going.

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!


  1. Fun quilts! Have a wonderful retreat!

  2. Thank you, Bonnie, for another very interesting post. There is lots of information here along with your pictures. I learn something new every day and old blog posts are worth revisiting.

  3. Wow, Some beautiful Quilts you found to share with us today. I love the way you spread them out to capture a picture. That takes time. I can't choose a favorite. Enjoy the time in Pennsylvania. Good you can drive and take your time to stop and explore. Of course we'll wait to see what came home... those were some pretty bowls you posted.

  4. Thank you Bonnie for showing those. Would have been very difficult leaving some of those beauties.

  5. Loved the quilt tour! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Wonderful quilts. Thank you so much for sharing. I do hope (fingers crossed) that the square in a square in a square log cabin entices you to design and create a pattern somewhere in the future! I love to ponder the quilter's use of the flag. I'm more inclined to think that it was in her mending basket and just couldn't mend it one more time. Practicality won out and she cut it up for a foundation for a beautiful quilt.

  7. There are several flags in the log cabin quilt.. looks like they could have been from the Civil War... maybe some captured flags, since this is in Virginia, the heart of the Confederacy. Wish it could tell its story!

  8. THANK YOU so much for sharing these fascinating quilts and tops!!! They give us ideas and help to train our eye in design and color. You are giving us such a rich gift in posting these examples of our quilting heritage! THANKS again!

  9. Wow, I love it when you take us to the antique shops with you. I sure hope the double wedding ring quilt came home with you. That pattern is on my quilting bucket list. Have loads of fun until tomorrow.....safe hugs. Thanks for including us.

  10. I must tell you that I said "Wow!" out loud numerous times while reading this post. Those quilts are all "Wow!" worthy. It would be hard for me to choose a favorite, though the log cabin with the flag foundation definitely wins for the history and story value. Thanks for sharing

  11. Thanks for sharing, we love to see these visits especially us here in Australia our anitques malls don't seen be as exciting as the American ones. We visited a couple when we were in the US last time and really enjoyed them.

  12. At least you know the Courthouse quilt was not made before 1889 because of the amount of stars in the back block. North Dakota was the 39th state, admitted in 1889. Women's voting amendment was in 1920, so in that 30 yr span, things were brewing. You could be right about the silent protest. Maybe the name of the block also makes a statement?? If quilts could only tell the whole story. Wish she would have slipped a note in one of the blocks.

  13. Such fascinating and beautiful quilts so interesting to see the use of colour in the love the scrappy looks on some. The use of the the flag as foundation was also interesting and as you say could have been a silent protest. Have a wonderful retreat.
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  14. Somehow, I don't think that was an authentic flag, simply based on the number of stars in the blue. As Nancy D pointed out, in 1889 there were only 39 states in the Union. Too many stars. But who knows? The blue in the field of stars is very intense, though, compared to the fading of the red in the material! As others had said, wish that the maker had documented it all, but to her, it was probably nothing out of the ordinary. If she only knew that she was making a historical document of the time she was in, and seeing those of us today oohing and aahing over her creation, wondering why she did what she did.

  15. Echoing what Rhonda said, I suspect this wasn't a "real" flag by the number of stars. Perhaps someone was swindled into buying a flag that was improperly printed and decided since it couldn't be flown that it could be used as scrap fabric?

  16. Bonnie,
    Someday when you are wondering what topic to post, (Ha Ha) would you be able to talk a bit about how you identify the different ages of fabric? I would love to know how you can tell the age of the quilt by looking at fabric. Thanks!

  17. Lol, Bonnie -- how many of those quilts did you purchase?!! Thank you for sharing!!

  18. Bonnie,that was a great post! The quilts were great, would love to make each one,but work gets in the way!!! Have a great week-end :)

  19. Bonnie I totally love your antique mall adventures!!!

  20. I love traveling with you on your blog. I feel like I am one of your friends also and we have never met. Thanks so much for your bloglovin friendship!


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