Friday, April 15, 2016

Tiger Lily

This is my Tiger Lily block for the Shenandoah Valley Botanical Album Quilt.
All of my blocks for this project are stitched using back basting and needle turn appliqué.

The leaves are one piece across, then covered by the stem. Like Esther, I used two green prints.

I basted the orange flowers as one piece. Thank you Shona for the print! The yellow circles cover the center - smaller than a dime.

I almost used a peach for the buds, but stuck with a double pink.

All inking was done before stitching.

The bud stems are embroidered.
I added a little green stitch at the base of each flower bud.

The Shenandoah Valley Botanical Album blog is filled with tips and hints.  If you haven't already, you might like to spend some time looking at the tabs. HERE. This month Doreen included instructions on her narrow bias stems HERE.

I'm linking up with other blogging friends who are stitching this project HERE.  You can also checkout our Facebook page: HERE.  I hope you join us!
Confession:  I still need to stitch my pineapple blocks!  
Have a great week,

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Sequestra and Ephemera

I have been stitching on projects I can't reveal just now.  This fall I can share them.
I have also been staging some ephemera with my sewing boxes.

The back of the photo:
"The shade makes me look darker here. 
Here I am for your watch Dear, send me yours when you have one taken"

She didn't want anyone thinking she was getting any sun tan on her beautiful porcelain skin!  Imagine what she would think of paying for a tan at a modern parlor?

She looks young, maybe the watch belonged to her sweetheart. The photo is trimmed, so I like to think he kept the photo in his watch and thought of her throughout his days.

My word of the week is sequestrum. I had a tooth extraction that I thought went exceptionally well.  Two weeks later I have a sequestra. Sequestra is a bone fragment working it's way through the gums.  My surgeon tells me in time it will work its way all the way out.  Feeling a little like forever!!

I came across this card and thought it was funny. We have to laugh at things like sequestra, it helps pass the time!  My surgeon was actually great, and in a couple weeks I hope to gift him with this card.
If you like ephemera, checkout this website:

All kinds of wonderful ephemera, and they also offer to help
find items from your wish list!
I'm stitching SVBAQ tiger lily petals this afternoon, how about you?
Have a great week,

Monday, March 21, 2016

Happy Spring

It is time for some light colors to usher in spring!
Even if it isn't spring where you live - enjoy the quilts.

All three vintage quilts are hand pieced and hand quilted.

Fun colors and prints.

Like some of you we still have days of snow ahead of us.

Bringing these quilts out is like a fresh spring breeze in the house.

Read more about the quilt on the left side HERE.
It is very similar to the variation on the wall.



Monday, March 14, 2016

Featured Quilter Deanna w SVBAQ Update

Deanna is one of the many talented stitchers participating in the Shenandoah Valley Botanical Album Sew Along (SVBAQ).

She's agreed to share some of her quilting world with us.
So many of us love to the sewing spaces of our quilting friends.  She's welcoming us in!

This is Deanna's start on the SVBAQ blocks.
The Liberty Tree is in process now.
She's using French General fabrics.
Back Basting is her go-to appliqué technique
Her blocks will finish at 16"
She will be hand quilting her project and is planning to make all of the blocks.
She chose this project because she loves Esther's design and it will be a beautiful addition to her home.

Deanna's Sewing space is beautiful.

She's also lucky, she never sews alone.
Her lovely side kick Teddy keeps her company.
Isn't he precious?

You can see she is very organized.

In addition to a practical space, Deanna adds designer touches throughout her home.

A closeup of the shelf gives a few clues to some of Deanna's loves.

Rabbits and Bunnies

Displays featuring sewing treasures

The pin cushions are made by Deanna, she also generously gifts them.

Little quilts and lace - all so pretty

So what kinds of projects come from this special place?

There are piecing and appliqué projects.

The basket top is from Blackbird Designs - Cold Wind Blows book.  Hand Appliqué, machine pieced.

The Baltimore Album block is an Elly Sienkiewicz design.
She has 10 blocks finished, all and appliqué.

The Irish Chain top is a recent finish from Aunt Reen's Big Leap Sew Along.  Machine pieced, using Doreen's instructions.  Deanna is considering machine quilting it on her new Bernina Santa delivered.

Deanna also does hand embroidery, including: crazy quilting, rework and counted cross stitch.

The tiny thimble purse is, 'Tree of Life Purse' by Brenda Gervais.

The sampler is, 'Rose Motif Sampler' by JBW Designs
Framed in an antique frame.

Hand Applique, Hand Quilted
Finished Size:  47" x 43"

I asked Deanna what her favorite project has been. Hard question!  Could you chose one?

She chose her La Petite Pomegranate, an AQSG 2014 Study Project.  This quilt is part of a traveling exhibit touring the country for four years.
The full quilt and the original (also owned by Deanna), can be seen in the book, "In War Time: A Study of Civil War Era Quilts" By the American Quilt Study Group.


For the SVBAQ mid month link up, My Liberty Tree.
You can see more Liberty Tree blocks on the SVBAQ blog HERE.
Also on the SVBAQ Facebook Page HERE.

SVBAQ quilter Dianne Miller was featured HERE.

I hope you enjoyed meeting Deanna, seeing her sewing space and great quilt projects!

Have a great week!

Deanna's Liberty Tree block 3/15/2016

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Block Holders Vintage and New

I shared with Hilda, (Every Stitch) I had a few block holders.  She suggested I share mine here.

The first one, I purchased from Hoopla (Here)
It is a super little travel set I highly recommend.

I used it when I was making Froncie's Calico Garden quilt many years ago.  I was traveling and it is a perfect take along.

It is small, at 7" square - perfect for a purse.

Many years ago my sit and sew group discussed larger block rolls. We thought someone taught a class in Houston around 1980?  Email me if you know I will update this post.

We challenged ourselves to go home and make a block roll and bring it the following month.

This is mine with obnoxious  the old ribbon ties on it.  When I got it out for this blog post, even Velma thought the ribbons were cat toys a bit much.

So I changed the ribbons out, and now I like it better.
The core (tube) is PVC pipe cut to length.  I cut mine to fit in my carry on roller bag - perfect for travel.  I chose a 2" diameter so it doesn't roll the blocks inside too tightly.

I covered the end of the tube with matching fabric.
You could use a mailing or blue print tube with a cap at the end.  Having access to the end of the tube provides additional storage.

I glued my fabric to the tube.  The raw edges were covered up by the quilted mat.

This photo shows the finished covered end.
Since I made it years ago I don't have WIP photos.

Flannel Cat Nap Block Holder

The inside of the holder is neutral flannel.
It is like making a small whole cloth quilt.
Measure block size, in my example 22"
   Add the circumference of the tube, in my example 7.5"
My finished and bound rectangle was 29.5"  I included the ribbon in the binding process, about 5" from the ends.
For quilting designs - I used stencils I already had and practiced some FMQ - remember, this project is about 12 years old. (?) 

When the tube ends are finished to your liking, and your 'mat' is finished, roll the mat around the tube/pipe.

Hand stitch the short edge of the binding to the inside flannel.

Variations from our group:  Pony tail holders for closures, shoulder strap, storage pockets along tube length and 'pages' inside the roll.
It was a fun project with lots of options to customize.

This is a vintage block holder I purchased.  I believe it was made as a teaching aid.

There are over 40 muslin pages.
Each page has at least one block basted to the page.
Hand inked on each page is 'their' name for each block.  In some cases multiple names are noted.

Most of the blocks are hand sewn and the newest fabric is circa 1890.  Most of the blocks are machine stitched to the muslin page.

Was the maker a quilt teacher?  Who and where did they teach?
A collector organizing research?  A quilter?
It is a nice stroll through some quilt history.  The maker added no dates, just block names.

Each page has a selvage edge folded over at the top - through that double layer a pair of brass rivets were added.

A pair of loose leaf bundle rings hold the pages together like a flip book.

A lot of effort - I think the block holder was designed to be durable and easy to add pages.

Do you have block holders?
     For storage?
     For  documenting spare/test blocks?
     For travel?

Have a great week!

Other Block Holders
Book:  Baltimore Elegance Elly Sienkiewicz
Embroidered and Hand Quilted HERE
Three Ring Binders w Page Savers HERE
Hilda's Project HERE
Happy to add more - let me know!