Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mosaic Columns Quilt A Colorful Journey

I need a name
I love textiles, not just reproduction fabrics and antiques, so quilts with lots of fabrics appeal to me.

Before I get into the details of my Mosaic Columns quilt, meet this SOK guy.

My DD and I were at the LQS and just had to buy the book, 'Stray Sock Sewing' by Daniel.  We were laughing out loud at the photography - the designs are a delight, and well - - the book came home with us...  We headed directly to the store and bought a bag full of baby and children's socks.  DD made several for gifts, and I managed to snag this 'guy with attitude' who sits on my desk.

Mosaic Columns
This is a Kaffe Fassett design 'Mosaic Columns' from the book 'A Colorful Journey.  ISBN 1-904485-07-3
It uses more then 25 prints in a beautiful queen size explosion of color.

The fabrics, including the back and binding were a gift from my DH, who bravely located the book in my sewing room, took it to the LQS, and had them package it all up.

It is machine pieced and I also machine quilted it.

Last year we had a house professionally staged for sale, and THE STAGER had me put most of my quilts away.  We won't discuss what happened in my studio...

Anyway - this quilt got to stay out, and was used to stage a pink girl's room.  It glowed.  And yes, the buyers had a little girl who got that room.

Every quilt can use red?

It even uses deep red in the pallet.  It was a good exercise to use the pallet in the book because I would not have selected the red.  Now I know better!

This basket is filled with loose buttons, so I scooped some red ones out for the photo...

The little red scissors are very light weight steel with tremendous sharp tips.  I bought them in the 1980's when I was heavy into cut thread work like Hardanger.

Color Pallet

Perhaps everything old is new again.
Checkout the pallet of colors in this old set of mending cotton.   Priced at 2 cents...

The 10 colors are 25 yards each, and are labeled "Mercerized Mending Cotton" from the Heminway and Bartlett Mfg. Co. Watertown, Connecticut Made in the U.S.A.

Instructions to darn a hole are on the back of the package with an illustration.  I wonder what two colors she used up?  White & Ecru?

Fishy Fishy

This is my little fish sewing bag.  Isn't the batik nice with the prints?  The pattern is in the book, 'Omiyage:  Handmade Gifts from Fabric in the Japanese Tradition', also a great book for fun little gifts.  I made several items from this book.

Also playing on the quilt are a pair of my scissoroos, and some silk thread from an applique project I had sitting near by.

Kind of a global combination, Australian designed scissors made in Italy, by the Japanese designed fish, made of batik from?, and the Kaffe design...

Shell Buttons
I thought the colors in this sewing set looked nice on the quilt too.  These are little themed 'books' that slide open like match boxes.  Each is 'titled' with a sewing supply it contains.  The bottom drawer opens to reveal scissors and thimble.

I don't think it was ever used.
Each little book/box is still full, including the shell buttons I sprinkled on the quilt.

The scissors have no maker marks but are pretty nice for a mending 'kit' and still very sharp.

Supply Drawer

Closeup of the scissors and thimble in the drawer.

Note the little circle drawer pull so carefully attached with a ribbon loop.

I'm thinking, 1940's?  Any ideas?

Use Color Today
And here's the gang....

Thanks for stopping by today.

Hope your day is sunny and bright!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Rebecca Kohler c. 1832 Repro

The original quilt is at the State Museum of Pennsylvania,  the reproduction pattern was created with permission by Patty Harants.

My version is hand appliqued, and machine quilted.  I adore the quirky and lively design.

One of my favorite elements in the quilt are the block 'shapes', normally seen pieced, like a simple nine patch, appliqued!

It was a delightful opportunity to dig through my stash and use a variety of fabrics. 

The original quilt is backed in a pillar print.
Book:  Saved For The People of Pennsylvania Quilts from the State Museum of Pennsylvania
ISBN:  0-89271-073-X

The corner appliques swirl in with a variety of fabrics, each corner has different fabric.

The little floating red squares make me wonder what was Rebecca thinking?  Such fun!

This is one of the reproduction quilts I would consider doing a second time.  I think the next one I would hand quilt - maybe applique in brights?

The tulips are a variety of pinks and peaches.

The stars are a bit primitive - attribute that to the design or my applique?  Maybe both!

The stems and leaves vary in shape and size.

I got a little carried away with the stippling in the quilting.  What can I say, I was learning!

I couldn't show a little quilt without a school girl sampler.  The creamy linen and the lighter thread colors compliment the quilt.

The dark wood sewing box is easy to tote around with the turned wood handle.  Inside is a thread shelf and I can just picture it used for mending.  Not so for me - I have it on a table with handwork kept close by a favorite chair.

The pin cushion is pink/blue silk and the little pin holder is wool, silk and flannel.

The needle/pin holder is worth a close up.

Pins are kept in the sides of the flannel cover disc sandwich.  The outside is flannel, the inside silk.  The middle layer is two layers of flannel held together with a button hole stitch.   All layers are held together with a little blue bow at the top.

The embroidery on the cover is a lower case 'a', assuming the bow goes on top.  Turn it the other way and it is an upper case 'D'.  A very tiny treasure!

Excuse my bad record keeping and I cannot tell you the source of the reproduction sampler pattern, it may have even been a kit.  I'll update the post if I unearth my pattern.  It is linen over 2, hem stitch edge, top mounted on linen.

I'm starting to alternate posts between quilts I've made, and old/antique quilts I own.

Thank you for stopping in today - make time to stitch!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Minnesota Hex's by Way of Texas Quilt c. 1890

We lived part-time in Texas for three years on a work related project.  Having read about the Round Top sales for years it was on the list of weekend outings.  We had a productive and fun day!
This particular dealer had a spindle bed setup in his booth and was turning through the quilts far a shopper ahead of us.  Lucky for me she passed this one by!  I still wasn't sure I should bring it home with me...DH said it would haunt me forever if I didn't, and I had yet to buy a quilt in Texas...but I still had to think about it and left.
Since I now own it, you know it was there when I returned.  I was talking to the dealer and he said there had been a group of ladies he thought for sure were going to buy it - who ever you are thanks for passing!
He also mentioned he was from Minnesota and the quilt came from an estate sale in my home state - 1,900 miles away!  The maker was a Lanesboro, Minnesota lady in her 80's.  It was meant to be, the quilt was going back 'home'.
The quilt is in mint condition and has a variety of fabrics.

Look at the dark red on red - it works!

The main red is a print.  Perhaps a chemical dye, alizarin, such a bright crimson.

These flowers have matching petal fabrics and the center hex matches the outer ring fabric.

This flower has alternating prints on the outer ring.

Its flipped back so you can see the backing - a mourning print maybe?

There are partial flowers along the edge.  The backing is folded around to form the binding, and hand stitched down.

  Neon Illumination Prints

Improvised plaid - a substitute in order to finish the flower.

The quilt is hand pieced and hand quilted.  The hand quilting lines follow each seam around the hexagonThe entire quilt is quilted in cream thread, no visible knots.

Thank you for stopping by!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Hexy Stars - Putting My Needles To Work

Upside Down Hexy Stars
This is my Hexy Stars Quilt.
Inspired by Frederica Josephson's 1850 Quilt

I drafted the templates and went to work sorting through my stash looking for stripes, small motifs, toile and a large variety of color.

I don't think I used any duplicate fabrics in the 7 inch blocks.  It is machine pieced and I did the hand quilting.

I just realized this photo is the quilt upside down - can you see not only the 'creatures' in the quilt are upside down, but also the 'lights' in the cubes are all down!  Rather than delete it, I'll post a right side up!

It was a fun quilt to make and now that is is finished I'd like to do another with smaller blocks.  Not sure yet how small, maybe half this size?

Hexy Stars Right Side Up

OK, much better, here we go right side up....

Almost an I-Spy...elephants, a variety of birds, is it a harpsichord or a piano?  a couple of dogs, fish and sheep.  My motto is the more scrappy and mixed up prints the better!

I enjoyed mixing the prints and colors on the design wall.  I took a few pictures as I went and pinned them up at work for a glance now and again with fresh eyes.  Of course as I look at it today I wonder why I made some of the placements I did.  On the next one I'll,,,,

 Digging through my stash I 'saw' various fabrics differently as I viewed them for star points, vs block pieces.

Some are precisely fussy cut - like this blue star, others are more random like the pink cream plume print.

The little pin roll is a linen embroidery with small glass seed beads.  The needle case is red leather and the thimble is marked 'England'.

There are medium and dark stars with light background, and light stars with dark or medium backgrounds.

All of my reproduction fabric was fair game - I didn't try to stick to any specific era, it more about the variety and color for me.

The three diamond blocks were interesting to do in stripes.  By fussy cutting the stripe you get an illusion of a waves.

This is another linen pin roll, I've done a half dozen or so - the rest will make their way into future posts..  The scissors have a pretty pattern on the handles.  The box, I thought was a powder box, but the inside of the cover is marked for the thread contents it used to hold.

Thank you for your inquiry.
More detail on the thread box...
Inside Lid Label

This one doesn't have the holes to feed the thread ends through - the reason I initially passed it by.  DH opened the lid and brought the label to my attention.  What a guy!

Here's another one - with the holes, no label and the cover looks more like a ladies dresser powder box with the romantic (very worn) lid:
Thread Opening on Box #2

Thank you for stopping by today!  Thanks you for your comments and questions!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Red and White The Park Avenue Armory Building

We didn't fully realize what we were in for as we approached the building for the exhibit.   Not only was the exhibit stunning, the building itself has a fascinating history.

"The Armory was built by New York State’s prestigious Seventh Regiment of the National Guard, the first volunteer militia to respond to President Lincoln’s call for troops in 1861. Members of what was known as the “Silk Stocking” Regiment included New York’s most prominent Gilded Age Families including the Vanderbilts, Van Rensselaers, Roosevelts, Stewarts, Livingstons and Harrimans. Built as both a military facility and a social club, the reception rooms on the first floor and the Company Rooms on the second floor were designed by the most prominent designers and artists of the day including Louis Comfort Tiffany, Stanford White, Herter Brothers and Pottier & Stymus. The Armory’s 55,000 square foot drill hall, reminiscent of the original Grand Central Depot and the great train sheds of Europe, remains one of the largest unobstructed spaces of its kind in New York. A marvel of engineering in its time, it was designed by Regiment veteran and architect Charles W. Clinton, later a partner of Clinton & Russell, architects of the Apthorp Apartments and the famed, now demolished, Astor Hotel"

We made time to wander through the reception rooms.
Cherry Paneling in This Room
Pockets Doors, Maple Wall Panels

Each room had its own style and type of wood paneling, fireplace and wood trim.

Wall Restoration In Process
Wall Sconce

Walnut Room Ceiling Undergoing Restoration
Ceiling and Crown Restoration In Process
Wall and Floor Near Fireplace

Fireplace Surround Detail

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Log Cabin

OK, Imagine me balancing on the foot board of the bed, with my camera, trying to get a shot of the complete quilt - well, OK, maybe don't imagine that...

This log cabin was purchased on Mother's Day during an adventure with my DS.  Whatever you want mom is what the coupon in the card could have been worse than lunch and a trip to a small antique shop in Hopkins Minnesota!  It was a glorious day.

This was another 'found sandwhich' quilt.  It was covered in some rayon med century home dec that was in terrible condition.  I could see through some of the tears that the inside had great potential.  Besides its great weight it looked like a great assortment of fabrics - and I love fabrics.  At minimum it held promise for a great fabric study quilt.

Once I got it home I removed the tattered covering, soaked it in the tub, dried it on the tile with a fan (it required a few turns) and was thrilled with the results.

Reproduction Sampler

It is the heaviest quilt I have.  I've heard them referred to as 'up north' quilts.  The kind that holds you down in bed in the coldest of a Northen Winter Nights... when you can see your breath in the morning at the cabin.

This little linen sampler I stitched years ago.  It has a hem stitched edge and is top mounted in the frame.  The sewing case has a velvet cover and silk lining.  The 'pages' still have the pins on the wools tabs.

Another reproduction sampler (much older era than the quilt) with a wonderful burl wood handmade frame.  The leather needle case had gold embossed letters - from London.

What an interesting variety of fabrics.  The contrast of the black and dark blues really 'pop' with the red centers.

Notice the use of reds also as 'darks'.

The quilt is tied with a red cotton - like a sugar and cream 'yarn'.

With a fabric study quilt - you have to have close ups of the fabrics!   Check out the pinks as lights - and reds as darks.
There are solids, stripes, plaids, dots, shirtings, paisley, and more.

The blocks are 4.5" and each fabric is 3/4" - just enough to see what the fabric print is all about.

Note the diagonal and straight stripes.

Each time I take this one out for a refolding I see fabrics I had not noticed before.

The fabrics are all in good condition, and the batting is most likely heavy, heavy cotton...unless its heavy because an even older quilt is inside!  Have not been brave enough to pick at some stitches to take a look- yet

Here's another close up with the reds and pinks together in the center - really glows from a distance.

I have a similar reproduction illuminated black and blue in my stash that I have yet to use.  Maybe I should cut some more black for my log cabin project.

Note the corner where the four block 'meet'.

Here's a closer look at a block.

This is the first notice I made of the brown with the leaf.  How did I miss that before?  The reason I always have to visit a quilt multiple times...

How many prints are there - someday I should make a list, but I guess over 100, and the span of years?  Multiple decades I suspect.  For now, I think they are all cotton.  However, next time I pull it out maybe I will make a new discovery.

I'll keep you posted....

My own little project.  I stopped working on it 2 years ago and didn't leave myself any notes so I'll have to regroup and pick up where I left off.

These are 4 of the unfinished blocks.  Now, I'm thinking I need some additional black, reds and pinks to liven it up!

Time to go raid the stash - or better yet - do some fabric shopping.

Take Care - Dawn