Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Friend's John Hewson quilt top finished!

With permission from both of my friends, I have some amazing work to share!

My Friend Susan made this John Hewson Winterthur quilt top and what a wonderful job she did!  Using her impressive mathematical skills and her Determination to Piece the top with no Fusing, she accomplished her Goal!  It was not easy and was frustrating at times and some fabric was wasted, but she persevered!  She got the fabric in Nov and showed me the top Dec 12 at one of our quilt study meetings!  Her speed is also impressive in addition to her workmanship!

This framed fabric art picture is hanging in my shop to showcase Barbara Martin's design and embroidery skills.  The embroidered details are amazing!  Each little tiny stone (cotton fabric) in the Wall is hand-appliqued!  Most of the fabrics are wool.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Old and New Comparison

A friend sold me this antique crib quilt many years ago and I tried to recreate it Long Before we had what we know as Reproduction Fabrics today!  There definitely were "fabrics that looked old" to me so I used was before Jan 1994 that I made this quilt.  The c.1830 quilt is a "cutdown" but not obvious at first. The chintz binding is on 3 sides and the top edge is folded and stitched down which is a combination we've seen many times in antique quilts we've documented here in Maine.  The first "cutdown" clue was that the chevron quilting lines in the center of the quilt did not always line up correctly.  Second clue was the very finely stitched center seam down the back of the quilt that was so well done, it was not noticed for a while!  I love to wonder why this was done.........was the quilt damaged along one side and the crib quilt salvaged from it?  The Cutdown was done a very long time ago.  It was a wonderful quilt when it was whole with its chintz border.....I've been told that the original color of the chintz print was in shades of rose. The handquilting is wonderful. I wonder if all the Flying Geese were of different prints as are the ones in these two strips.

 The following photos are from my copy of the quilt, using a few early Jinny Beyer prints and I see some from Judie Rothermel and I think from Jeff Gutcheon.  I used muslin for the background because probably a tan muslin was not yet known to me.  Maybe I ought to overdye with Rit tan to age it....we'll see.  I remember ordering the border fabric prior to Jan 1994 while my shop was still at my mother's house about 7 miles up the road.  I used the front 2 rooms of her cape for 3 years and then she told me I had to build a building as I was beginning to encroach on her living space!  I was so excited as it was the first fabric that I had found that looked, to me, like an antique chintz.  Sure am glad that situation has changed over the years!! The colors in the "chintz" closeup photo are pretty true to the original.  I enjoy making copies of old friend has another quilt that I copied........a late 19th century center medallion that we have hung together in shows.......that will be for another day!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

It's been awhile........................

since I posted on my know the drill......busy with holidays and family!  Tonight I'll show you two quilts (am experimenting with higher resolution photos hoping they will enlarge better, and now I think I also need to make the flash stronger!).  The Churn Dash is from quite a few years ago using Judie Rothermel's first Civil War line in late 1990's (some fabrics have been reproduced again recently) of my favorites and it was an experiment in using 6" charm squares for the blocks. 

Second quilt is a 16-Patch from one of Jo Morton's early Clubs.  It was the first quilt I machine-quilted that I was happy with my quilting!  And it was rather accidental!  I was quilting the straight lines and had lengthened my stitch as usual for quilting.  Then I noticed that my stitches were quite robe sleeve must have turned the stitch length dial on my machine...but hey!  I liked the look of the smaller stitches anyway!  So I took out the longer ones, knowing it would be very hard to take out these small stitches if I made a mistake.  Luckily, it worked out fine!

This last quilt top is one from a Prairie Women's Sewing Circle club that I decided to do in different colors.  First one, in blue and shirting, is pictured aways back the blog.  I love the color called "cheddar" and it looks great with the indigo blue!  I machine-quilted the first one but may hand-quilt this one....wish I could handquilt everything but it's not possible!  Today I spent part of my "day off" pin-basting 3 small quilts and am in the process of pin-basting my Gwen Marston-inspired toile center medallion...hard on my back to do it all at once!  I pin-baste my quilts on the dining room table (anchor small ones with masking tape and larger ones with bulldog clips along the edge of the table.)  Then, I either machine-quilt (mostly just in the ditch or straight lines across the blocks as might have been done "in the old days") OR machine-baste for handquilting.......seems like overkill to baste twice but I think it helps make my quilts nice and flat!  Quilter's Dream Request is my usual choice of batting but I also use Mountain Mist Blue Ribbon sometimes.