Thursday, February 28, 2013

For The Birds!! Home Dec Fabrics For Quilts

Sharon Kessler Concord Home Dec Baker Bird Floral
Extending your 'quilting' fabric options using home decor fabrics is not new.

It is harder if you buy online, 100% cotton can be heavy, not an ideal quilters weight.  The weight will matter less if you machine quilt.
Some online resources will provide or sell swatches before you buy.

Keep the scale and pattern repeat in mind.

Another consideration is shrinkage.

A Bountiful Life/Civil War Bride/Bird of Paradise
Border Print:  Pat L. Nickols

Check out quilts by Cynthia Collier Quilts.
Each of her quilts is a work of art.

Cynthia has a gift for combining fabrics - quilters, batiks and home decor prints.

Stunning fabric combinations!

See the bird in Cynthia's second row - fourth block?
Waverly Olana on Cream Ground

Cynthia uses fabric to make each block her own.

More Birds - -

The Waverly blue resist is a blend, it is also printed in an outdoor treated version.

I first purchased a half yard and washed it.  I was pleased with the results so I will be using it for backing on this older pillar print.  It is soft enough for hand quilting.

...and more birds...

Birds, fruit, baskets....

I love the beautiful mono-print options.

Polished finish, so this one might not be a candidate for hand quilting.

Then there are the Waverly curtain panels.
You can read more about the "curtain along"      HERE.
Each panel is 50" wide and 84" long.
That's a nice border quantity!

No birds - but a lovely fabric with a nice finish and 'hand'.

I personally think it is too light weight for curtains, and unlined too!

...OK, one last bird...
Jewel Tower by Waverly

This is another bird print from Waverly.

It is available in yellow, blue and red colorways.

Thanks for your inquiries on the valance fabric, you will find several links at the bottom of this post.
No decisions on the left over bird fabric and a quilt project...I have a lot of birds to decide on!
Have a great week.

Check your local quilt shop too, mine has home dec on rolls
Baker Bird Floral  HERE
Waverly Curtain Panels HERE
Olana Birds on Blue HERE  Cream HERE
Blue Resist RAYON Blend HERE
Jewel Tower Print HERE
Quilt Pattern:  A Bountiful Life, Bird of Paradise, Civil War Bride

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Clamp Sewing Box

Continuing with the sewing boxes...

This is my sewing clamp pin cushion with a drawer.
It clamps to a table edge securing all contents.

Pins were hand made and expensive in the 19th century.

The burl veneer finish is beautiful.  Both functional and pretty it could be kept out and sometimes used for 'show'.

I think the small brass knob is original.

The drawer could hold threads, waxers, emeries and personal items.  The drawer has dove tail construction.

The pin cushion cover was removed by a previous owner exposing the 'interlining' separating the filling material from the top fabric.  Common fillings are horse hair and saw dust.

I have chosen not to alter it further with a new top.

The sterling sewing etui is a holly/berry pattern.
Pieces include:
   Scissors, thimble, needle case, bodkin and stiletto

I've been sewing for the house - this is the fabric for the valances in the kitchen.  Glad to have that project done!  Got to love friends who have such great taste in fabrics.

How interesting I ordered so much - I have yardage left for quilting.  Funny how that happens.  It is the perfect weight.

Some quilting happening too - exciting new things I will share soon.

Have a great week - do you have a favorite pin cushion?
Maybe a better question is, how many pin cushions are you using?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Hexagon Quilt Top and Weighted Sewing Box

I had a request to show my sewing boxes in detail.  I am happy to do so!  I will start with one of the oldest.  This is probably  early/mid 19th century.
This little wooden box with beautiful inlay is weighted.  The petite handle would never support the weight of the box.  I have read that the weight was used to hold fabric in place, in the lap or from a table top.  It is about 6" long and weighs about 3 pounds.
The padded lid is replacement fabric, not done by me.

The inside of the box is divided.  It is not a tray.
The pearl handle, lidded compartment has been recovered in fabric that matches the outer top.
The inside of the box is lined in beautiful paper.  The paper appears to me to be original, although the gold isn't quite as 'metallic' as it once was.  The compartments are deep - a mother of pearl thread winder is shown in one of the square sections.
The floral band of inlay around the outside is in great condition.

The sewing roll is pink silk, hand embroidered has several sections.  The center is a small pin cushion.

Very elegant with feather stitching in three lines running the length of the lining.

When closed, it folds to a petite 2.5" x 3.5"

The quilt top is English, paper pieced by hand.

Many early 19th century fabrics, including the chintz center hexagon.

It gets scrappier as the rounds progress.  Some of the Hex pieces are themselves pieced.

I have been told by more than one conservator to photograph the papers and then remove them.

The acid in the papers and ink will cause the fabrics to deteriorate.  This might be my project this month!  There are only a few left in.

You can also see the hand basting and hand sewing.

Here is a close up of a few of the fabrics.

Wonderful detailed fabrics, the maker skillfully mixed a variety of scale and color.

I finished the Salley Morse sampler.  You can see it all framed - really- complete, done... totally finished - HERE.
I love the tiger maple frame molding - solid maple.

I hope you enjoyed the first box.  More coming up in future posts.
Also, I will be answering a request to see more of the little sewing machines.   I love requests, as much as comments - thank you for taking time to comment!
I know you are reading and what you like to see and read here.

Have a great week!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Trip Around The World

Sewing boxes with trays and sewing items.
Vibrant original paper linings and painted trim.
I bought a new to me quilt - Trip Around the World.   The colors work perfectly with some of my other antique and reproduction quilts.
The vibrant colors also work well with some of my antique sewing boxes and needlework accessories.
Someone asked why there were mirrors in the lids of old sewing boxes.  I have read that a sewing box was the ladies domain and she kept her personal items with her sewing.  It was her private place.
Fully outfitted boxes contain toiletry bottles and brushes.  Many sewing items have sentiments engraved or embroidered.  Some lids are designed to hold letters.

Trip Around The World 87" Square

This is the quilt on my foyer floor.

It is entirely hand stitched; piecing, quilting and binding.  All cream thread.  Each square is 1.5" finished, and each is quilted along every seam.
That's 2,500 outlined squares!

Triple Border is quilted in an interesting X shaped non-touching motif.
The back is 22" wide pieced, in a purple/gold/cream ground print.

There are solid and print fabrics in the piecing.

Catherine's Pin Cushion
Silk, Ribbons, lace on a wired glass bead frame

This is a silk pin cushion 'pillow' sits in a beaded wire frame base.  The dealer I bought it from said it was from Catherine's estate so I thought it only fitting I keep it with the quilt.

Perhaps yellow was her favorite color since the quilt and pin cushion are predominately yellow.
The significance of the color yellow has many meanings depending on the era and religous beliefs...I can only speculate it was a good thing for Catherine.

What's in your sewing box?
A treasured picture?  Love notes? Chocolate?

Have a great week!