Give-away winners

image of Large Panel

I decided to wait until at least Saturday night because it will still be the 13th July somewhere in the world when we’ve moved on to the 14th July here so yesterday I drew the winners for the give-away announced back here.

Well actually Jenn did it, she was at my place as we had some work to do, always there is work to do!!

I have to tell you, even something as simple as drawing a give-away was not without confusion :-0

But first I had fun choosing a couple of extra pieces of fabric to go with the John Hewson panels,

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Large Urn, with warm brown and light blue for the first two names out

I wanted to give you something a little different to go with the panels, something other than a companion print

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Birds, with a madder and an eccentric print for the 3rd and 4th names out.

So with that all done, it was time to write out the names and pop them in a container of some description.

The first thing I did was go on to the post page to see that there were 23 comments,

I had made two replies so that means there are 21 people in the draw, yeah.

Then I wrote down all the names on pieces of paper, and just to be sure I counted them.

There were only 20!

So I counted them again, making sure paper hadn’t got stuck together.  Yeah there’s only 20.

So then I read out the names and Jenn checked all the pieces of paper.

Yes everybody is there, so why does the page tell me there are 23 comments?

So I went to my dashboard to check what is going on.

Haha, but not before checking with Jenn that, uummm 23 minus 2 is 21 isn’t it, I actually said that!

There was an extra (already approved) comment that for some reason had not appeared on the list, I have no idea why but rest assured your name went in the draw CMB :-)

Alrighty, after all that hullabaloo we were ready to pull some names out.

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Putting Jenn to work... again.

Looking at this photo I have to make clear, I am somewhat considerably taller than 5foot1Jennifer

and Jennifer could not see in to that box.

Drum Roll, first name out is…

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Marianne from the Netherlands

Then Judy

Then Ady

Then Jennifer Carlyle Shelton

Congratulations to all of you,

I’ll email you for your postal addresses.

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Ready to post

Thank you to everyone who sent in lovely comments.

You all know I had the pleasure of spending a day at the Winterthur Museum, Curator Linda Eaton was very generous with her time allowing Irene and me to enjoy the quilts in their collection.

Please also enjoy and be inspired by these few pics, an homage to John Hewson

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Quilt c 1830-1850 using John Hewson fabrics. Maker unknown. In the collection of the Winterthur Museum, Wilmington, DE.

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John Hewson birds, detail of the above quilt.

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Applique Counterpane early 1800s. Birds cut from John Hewson fabrics. In the collection of the Winterthur Museum, Wilmington DE.

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Detail of above with John Hewson butterfly

  thanks for visiting.

Til soon


Antique purchases

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This may be the quickest Blog Post ever,

photo’s are primed and ready to go,

I am sitting with Laptop on lap at Auckland airport waiting for my domestic flight to Palmerston North,

or Palmy as Palmerstonians like to call it.

One of the reasons why I’ve felt in a real muddle since getting back from the US is that there were many boxes of goodies arriving intermitently over the last week, cluttering up the place.  I’m not great when things aren’t orderly.  I’m pretty sure it’s a Libran thing.

Irene came up last weekend and we made an attempt to go through some of it.  We couldn’t even remember 1/3 of what we bought.

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That's three boxes worth

Then yesterday my final box arrived, it was from Stella Rubin Antiques and contained this very charming treasure.

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Late 19th C Star star quilt with cheerful Yellow applique

It was the cheerful yellow applique which charmed me so much, what an unexpected and delightful addition to a simple quilt pattern.

I also bought from Stella a few ‘orphaned’ blocks which appealed.

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Antique House block

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Antique Block

Love a good paisley as you know

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Antique Pieces

When I was at the New England Quilt Museum, I found a couple of treasures there too

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Fabric pieces approximately 1785 - 1845

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Vintage Prussian Blue Album Block

I’ll be whipping off that border of course

I’m going to leave it there for today, I’ve got time for a cup of tea if I don’t dilly dally.

Internet connection permitting I will be back in a day or two and will have a give-away as there is so much fabric!!

til soon,

Oh by the way,

all fine in NZ just took the opportunity to ‘nip’ home to see Mum before the rest of the year gets really busy.


USA continued, visiting D.C.

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 Warning, you may need to make a cup of tea before sitting down.

I could go on indefinitely with posts titled USA continued,

but I think we might all get sick of that ;-)

So I will make this the final post about the USA trip even though I’m sure I’ll still post the odd photo of USA quilts, people and places over the months to come.

 I saw so much to inspire me that you can imagine I have quilts dancing around in my head and I have this morning started on Something New, which I will want to show you a little of before long.

As promised this post will be about the time in Washington D.C.

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Don't let the summer blouse fool you, it was brisk on that bus brrrrr

Irene and I actually stayed at a Holiday Inn hotel in Alexandria, VA

(just across the river and more to our budget than being in DC itself)

It was suggested by Fiona of  Country Threads ,thank you Fiona it was perfect for us.  We were riding that subway like locals over the four days.

The main purpose for being in D.C. was of course to visit the National Museum of American History.

I have been in fairly regular contact with Associate Curator Doris Bowman since embarking on my Maltaville Album Quilt and was keen to see the original quilt if possible.

To say the half day at the Smithsonian was “brilliant” is an understatement.  I was bowled over by Doris Bowman’s generosity in allowing me to view, touch ~ gently, and photograph the original quilt as well as allowing me time to just look and learn.

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"How have they finished that edge?"

Now I know, after the red piping there is a 1 1/8″ finished folded binding ~  left unfilled.

The quilt itself threw up some surprises and answered some of my questions, but with those answers comes more questions.

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Detail of centre block

Cleverly using the wrong side of the green fabric to create subtle shading,  I have done that myself in the past but it was a nice surprise to see it here.  There is a lot more embroidery than I had realised though ~ not my strong point!

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Harriet Able's block

I didn’t do my stems or leaves like that, but I like the way it looks.  I think I will be a convert to Harriet’s method.

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On Earth In Heaven block by Delia Burr

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Mrs William Thompson Maltaville block

As I say, embroidery is not my strong point which is why my bird block is still waiting for that embroidered detail.

I showed Doris my version of the Maltaville, which looks so stark and *white* next to the original which is so warm and mellowed with age.

I posted a photo of me grinning like a cheshire cat here on the Maltaville Blog.

I was also able to view some other quilts which are of interest to me, it should come as no surprise which four quilts topped that list,

The Rising Sun Quilt,  The Little Sister’s Quilt, Benoni Pearce’s Groom’s Quilt and the Copp Family Quilt.

It was such a privilege to view these quilts, even tucked away in their drawers.

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Benoni Pearce's Groom's Quilt 1850, detail

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Betsy Totten's Rising Sun Quilt, detail

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Little Sister's quilt, detail

It’s not known whether Susan Holbert (born 1834) made this quilt herself or if her older sister Emily Holbert made it for Susan.

But Emily Holbert did make this quilt in 1847, Emily died in 1858.

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Emily Holbert quilt 1847, detail

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Copp Quilt early 19th century, detail

I saw even more quilts than these and will share them with you over time.  I am very, very thankful to Doris Bowman for being so generous with her time and knowledge.

  While in D.C. we also visited the DAR museum.

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Hexagon quilt, Vermont Room DAR Museum.

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Penn family 1850s Baltimore Album Quilt (left) and Mary Mannakee Quilt (right)

We visited the DAR twice, the first day we didn’t get there til 3pm as we had taken a drive out to visit Stella Rubin Antiques , more about that another day!  So another visit was needed to really study the quilts on show at the DAR.

You may like to put the kettle on again as there are just a few more things I want to share.

I don’t want to sign off from the US trip without mentioning the day Irene and I spent with friends Marsha, On the Go Quilting and Stella ~ no blog, yet ;-)

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Back row: Irene and Moi. Front row: Stella and Marsha.

We had a great day together at the New England Quilt Museum and the Lowell Textile Museum.  We even squeezed in a trip to Candlelite Quilts to do some more shopping.  Marsha, we made a dash to the USPS on the Friday for our final mailing home, we had three mailings home in all for a grand total of five boxes!!  Marsha has blogged about our fabulous day together here and here

And Stella, I will be in touch real soon about ‘you know what’.

I’ll finish with a few odds and ends

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Dress 1845-1848 American History Textile Museum, Lowell, MA

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Mill building, Springfield, Vermont

 I wish the above photo had sound.

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Rockport, MA

I know I will have to do another USA cont. blog post because I haven’t shared anything from the Winterthur Museum yet.

But that will have to be another day, next time I want to show you a little of a new project.

And the latest Quiltmania magazine is out, with the  final instalment of my Mid 19th Century Star quilt along with the photo shoot Quiltmania did here last year.  Very Exciting.  I will try to be back in a day or two.

til soon


USA continued


I am enjoying looking through the photo’s of the trip, but I fear my intention to post chronologically is doomed to fail ;-)

You can imagine the thousands of photo’s I’ve taken on both camera and iphone still being filed in to assorted folders on the computer.

And yesterday was my son’s wedding day and naturally I want to show you how happy he and is beloved are.

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The happy couple, Dylan and Jacinta, dancing up a storm.

And yes my dress still fitted just fine, despite eating my way across the US.

I would love to show you a little more of Natchez, Mississippi.

Irene and I loved this place and are keen to get back there with Jennifer.

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Street scene, Natchez Mississippi

It might be a great place for a quilt retreat.

The hotel we stayed in was the Eola Hotel, a grand Southern style hotel.

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38 Stars and 13 Stripes, United States Civil War Battle Flag

In Paducah I was able to put faces to a couple of familiar names which was really nice.

Christine is one of the Maltaville subscribers,  I just happened to read her name tag and introduced myself.

image of Sittin' a whileMe and Christine.  Lunch at CrackerBarrell, then just sit a while

Gail is another Maltaville quilt friend, I knew she had a few quilts accepted in to Paducah so was excited at the chance to see her work, then I found out that she was going to make it to Paducah as well.

Here’s just one of Gail’s three quilt entries, they were all exceptional quilts

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First Baltimore by Gail H Smith

We met up at the National Quilt Museum and spent a lovely time enjoying the quilts together.

We had emailed with what we were wearing that day, and when I walked in to the museum I saw a lady who I thought could be Gail.

The funny thing was, she was standing next to Irene who was waiting for Sherry and me to arrive as we had being doing our own things for the morning.

And even funnier was that when we did all the introductions, Irene and Gail had been corresponding in the past and knew each other’s names but Gail hadn’t realised I was travelling with ‘that’ Irene and Irene hadn’t realised I was meeting ‘that’ Gail.

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Sherry, Gail and Irene. The smiles say it all.

I was especially happy to see one of Margaret McDonald’s quilts.

Margaret is a quilt designer/teacher I really admire and like a whole lot.

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School Days by Margaret McDonald

There were so many quilts I took photo’s of but will show just a few more today.

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# 579 Forever In My Heart quilt by Lahala Phelps, Washington.

I would love to make a quilt ‘one day’ using a brilliant deep yellow background.  It’s stunning.

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# 925 The Compass Quilt by Kathleen McLaughlin, Connecticut

Circular blocks are also a favourite, and I really like the darker background used here.

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Applique detail from #125 Album of Roses quilt by Rita Verroca, California

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# 125 Album of Roses quilt by Rita Verroca, California.

The workmanship in the quilts at Paducah just took my breath away.  Congratulations to the winners but also to everyone who had quilts  accepted for exhibit.  It was a delight to see them all, thank you.

I’ll pop the occasional quilt in to a blog post for a while to come I think.

Pat and Arlan Christ had a display of antique quilts and Arlan gave a very informative floor talk each day.

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Sawtooth Bars quilt c1870, Pennsylvania

Next post I will fast forward to Washington D.C. and the Smithsonian Institute.

I am still reliving the morning spent in the Quilt Room at the Institute, studying the original Maltaville Album Quilt.

That was very special.

til soon,



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It’s said that all good things must come to an end,

I’m not sure if that’s always the case but my wonderful trip to the States ended yesterday when Irene and I arrived back in cold Melbourne.

We had the BEST time, over the next few weeks I’ll be posting about the things we saw and did.

But first a big big thank you to Jenn who did a blog post by proxy for me, thanks Jenn you are a champ.

There were a few problems with the blogging while away, I thought everything would go to plan but hadn’t counted on very slow internet connections when using ‘free’ hotel WiFi (well you get what you pay for as they say)

Coupled with the photoshop program not loading properly on Irene’s travelling computer, it seemed to be a conspiracy against both Irene’s and my best intentions to blog.

So we made sure we spent the time out and about seeing things instead so that there’ll be something to show you now :-)

I’ll do a bit at a time and try to keep it chronological.

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We are pretty excited at this point, quick stop in Sydney then next stop San Francisco.

However San Francisco was another quick stop en route to Texas, San Antonio to be exact.

I really liked Texas, a lot.

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Texas State Flag

I can’t wait to go back, I know I will get back there.

We stayed with good friends Sherry and Darwin whom Jenn and I have known for a couple of years.

 After just a few too short days in San Antonio Irene, Sherry and I headed to Paducah.

We decided to make it a bit of a Road Trip especially wanting to see some of the Natchez Trace Parkway which Linda Collins had recommended

It really was a highlight of the trip, we drove it between Natchez and Tupelo Mississippi

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At the start of the Trace, Natchez Mississippi

We took a leisurely four days to get to Paducah, travelling through Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee.

I have just today started on loading *all* those photo’s on to the computer and reliving it all.

It was such a treat to be able to spend time in those States.

I will try to post a little more about those later but I would like to show just a couple more pics, taken in Paducah.

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Meeting new friends ~ Cyndi from Cyndi's Quilts Oklahoma, Me, Gerald Roy and Sherry.

I made a few exciting (read antique) purchases in Paducah and one of them was from Cyndi,

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1849 applique quilt

And this is it,

it comes with a good amount of provenance, enough to get a head start on some further research.

Next post I will put up some pictures of Paducah quilts, the fun we had in Paducah and the quilters we met.

It will take me a little while to work out which quilt photo’s to post as needless to say

the quilts on display were all incredible !!

til soon


G’day USA

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G’day USA, I’m coming over in April
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American Quilt c 1880 and a little research

I’ll be travelling with good friend & quilt designer

and our trip will see us visiting 11 States over 23 days starting in San Antonio, Texas and ending in Boston, Massachusetts.
As I write that I think Yikes, can that be right?
but it is and it will require a bit of stamina.
I better start on the multi-vitamins today.

We will be at the AQS show at Paducah and the priority now is to finalise which classes to do and get that sent away.

image od Paducah class list

high, medium and low priority...I don't know any other way of doing it.

How on earth do you decide what to do! This is massive, I’ve never seen a class list in Australia with this much to offer.
So I decided to highlight all the classes, lectures and events according to how relevant they are to me.
Pink for essential, a major reason for being there in fact,
Green for those things which I would also benefit from and to fit it in I am prepared to forgo shopping something else,
and Yellow for those which I think would still be interesting if time allowed.
Of course if I don’t hurry my choices may be made for me.
til soon






Prussian Blues, an almost wordless post!!

image of Prussian Blue and Buff fabric

Oh Boy, if only someone would reproduce these…please somebody, anybody!!

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Prussian Blue and Buff fabric detail

I’ve got about four or five photo’s to post here.  All these fabrics are from quilts in the collection of Janet O’Dell and I had the pleasure of looking at them over the weekend at the Quilt Study Group Australia Seminar ‘Unfolding Tradition‘.

These few quilts were only a taste of what we saw during Janet’s presentation

Traditional Quilt Turning of selected pre 1850 Quilts and Coverlets

Many thanks to Janet for showing these stunningly beautiful pieces from her collection and allowing me to show some pictures here of the fabrics in the quilts and coverlets.

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Prussian Blue Ombre Stripe

The first two photo’s are from the same quilt.

These fabrics are in no particular order, I’m just grabbing them out of the folder.

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Prussian blue and Buff...eccentric, vermiculate print?

These few quilts are a mix of British and American quilts and all 1800- 1850 approximately.

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a selection of Prussian Blue fabrics

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Prussian Blue Ombre Stripe

I have more to share over the weeks, we had 8 different presentations over the weekend so this is just a small taste

It was the most fantastic weekend, Thank you to Janet O’Dell (convenor) and all the organizers and speakers.

You can imagine I’m a weeny bit exhausted.

til soon :-)

The first Tuesday in November…

image of Robbie and me

…is Cup Day, that’s Melbourne Cup Day of course and we get a day off.  It really is the race that stops a nation. Why? I don’t know.

I’m not really interested in Horse racing but I do like horses and even used to hurtle about the countryside on the back of this trusty steed.

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Robbie and moi.

But given that we do have a day off I am going to catch up with some long overdue blogging, that’ll include reading as well as writing.

I was bit out of action with a bee sting the other week,  of course Murphy’s Law dictates that after I had prepped lots of hand sewing to take to my LQG’s Quilt-in I was stung and could not even pick up a piece of cutlery, never mind a needle.

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Normal hand

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Big hand

Yikes…it’s been a long time since I’ve been stung and haven’t really had that reaction before.

All back to normal now.

And sewing again, phew.

I promised a little while back that I would share some pics from Quilts in the Barn, I took close-up photo’s of the fabrics in  Linda’s antique quilts  because I spotted some originals of fabrics which I have the repros of…does that make sense?

So here is what I shot, with thanks to Linda :-)

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this one's the antique quilt

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This one's the repro Windham True Madder #20331

Jo Morton did a great one too for Andover fabrics a while back

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Jo's interpretation for Andover fabrics

The next fabric really caught my attention

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This paisley fabric is in Linda's antique quilt

These are my two bits of repro (it also came in green)

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Windham Civil War IV c 1860 by Nancy Gere #25310-52

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Windham Civil War IV c. 1860 by Nancy Gere #25310-32

I am really liking little spots and dots (almost as much as paisleys)

image of Antique yellow fabric with spot

The real deal

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this one's the repro, Scrappy Dots by Judie Rothermel for Marcus Bros. Textiles 2006

Aren’t we lucky that we have such great fabric designers producing excellent repro’s for us to use.

Another thing I’m happy about is finding more of this

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I didn't think I'd see a whole bolt of this again.

I took a trip to Melbourne on Friday with Jenn to do some fabric shopping etc and stopped at Quilters Bazaar in Gisborne on the way.  I couldn’t believe it when I saw this fabric as I have had my now paltry sized piece for a few years and guard it jealously.

She had a whole bolt of it so maybe it’s been re-released, not sure and the staff didn’t know.

Anyway I now know what it is as before I knew only that it was an International Quilt Study Centre fabric, but it is designed by Kathy Hall with Jo Morton for Andover Fabrics patt #4132.

LOL I now have enough to make curtains, but there’s more there if you want any too.

Here’s one more pic from Quilts in the Barn, this one is one of Jo’s quilts featuring the above fabric

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detail of Jo Morton quilt using Madder Stripe fabric

and here’s my Maltaville saturn block using the same fabric

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Saturn Block for the Maltaville Album Quilt 1847

I think I’ve got time to quickly post a couple of pics on the Yahoo group ‘repro lovers’ before Jenn arrives for this afternoon’s task.

I don’t think that race is going to stop anyone in this household this afternoon.

soon :-)

I have not started a new quilt…it’s just a block.

image of 19th century Rising Sun Album Quilt


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Rising Sun Album block

Speaking of new, I’ve got a new blog friend too and that is how this new quilt block came about.

Please let me introduce you to Marsha, she has very recently started a quilt blog which I’ve been enjoying reading.

Marsha’s blog is called On The Go Quilting and she wrote to me a couple of weeks ago as she was searching for any info about a quilt she had seen in the Weathersfield Historical Society in Vermont, in particular the name of the quilt.

Of course Marsha had googled Rising Sun Quilt and because I blather on so much about the Smithsonian Fabrics, including the Rising Sun fabrics, my name monopolised the first page of searches.

Here’s a portion of the quilt from Marsha’s Blog (thanks Marsha)

image of 19th century Rising Sun Album Quilt

detail of c. 1850 Rising Sun Album Quilt, in the collection of the Weathersfield Historical Society, Vermont.

And below is the link which will take you to the post where Marsha talks about her visit to the Weathersfield Historical Society

(you’ll see more lovely old quilts in the post, click here)

She (and then in turn I) was interested in the pattern name attributed to the quilt ‘The Rising Sun Album Quilt’.

We have both been on a bit of a search since then, looking for an alternative name. I have ‘yet’ to find that block anywhere under any name, and in all my reference material the name ‘Rising Sun’ will show blocks that don’t bear any resemblence to the above at all.

As I was in the mood for a little diversion I decided to quickly (huh) run up a block.

For eight pointed stars I pretty much always use the Easy Eight and Companion Angle rulers, so choosing a size and rotary cutting the diamonds and set in triangles was done in a flash.

That was the end of quick,  I then decided to draw on the seam allowance and hand piece the block, well the machine wasn’t ‘out’ and I just couldn’t be bothered getting it out.

The original quilt does have signatures in the little triangle, it’s hard to know if I’ve made my block too big or too small but I do like the scale of it so I’m happy with it.  I made it 8 1/2″ finished. I also appliqued the triangle for the signatures, though it does appear to have been pieced in when I look closely.

When time allows I will draft a block properly with a pieced signature triangle.

Marsha has also made a block, you can see it here, where she also talks more about the mystery, and a great quilting tip too.

So, what fun…

Has anyone out there seen this block/quilt pattern?  In the flesh or in a book even?

I really love the colours of this quilt, I know I won’t be able to help myself…I’ll be making this quilt.

Just not this week.

Great Grandma Cash’s Red and White Quilt

Image of Red and White Quilt

Taryn over at Repro Quilt Lover is celebrating the upcoming exhibit at the American Folk Art Musem in NYC, “Infinite Variety: Three Centuries of Red and White Quilts.” with an on-line exhibit of Red and White Quilts (old or new).

What a great idea as I won’t be able to make it to New York but would still love to see some gorgeous Red and White Quilts, thank you Taryn.

So here’s my one and only Red and White Quilt, that’s to say, it’s the only one I currently have…I’m planning on having more as I love Red and White and in fact I have one whole block :-) made for the one I’m currently working on but don’t hold your breath.

Image of Red and White Quilt

I bought this quilt on ebay last year from Mary, a delightful lady in Wisconsin.  The quilt came to her from her sister’s husband’s family, made by his Great Grandmother, Grandma Cash of Cashton, Wisconsin.

I have a tenuous connection with Wisconsin as two of my Grandmother’s sisters migrated there from England in the first quarter of the 20th century so I have some distant Wisconsin cousins but it would be way too spooky if they were related to Great Grandma Cash or her downline.  I am just thrilled to have this example of Wisconsin quilt making, I’m not sure I could hope for my cousins to have slept under it too.

Image of Red and White Quilt detail

Mary felt the quilt was possibly made around the 1920s, this may be correct or may be an assumption from working backwards to Great Grandma Cash from her Brother-in-law’s age at an approximate of 25 years per generation.

I feel it might even be as early as 1880 up to 1920 for a few reasons.

  • Red and White Quilts were popular from around 1880 up until 1910
  • The smaller single bed size was popular from 1880.
  • Triple Sashing was popular from 1870-1910
  • The condition of the fabrics *seems* more consistant with the older time frame

Then of course we get in to the *buts and howevers*

  • Not everyone is exposed to current trends  and so in some, possibly more isolated, areas they may have continued longer in a style of  quiltmaking that was no longer as fashionable elsewhere in the country.
  • Great Grandma Cash may have just sewn whatever she liked with little regard for what was new or fashionable.
  • It is obviously a well used (much loved) quilt and may have just worn more quickly.

So I have a lovely quilt that is hard to pin an exact time frame on, but that’s OK…I love it but treat it carefully.

image of Red and White Quilt detail

The quilting is very simple and linear, a mixture of Dropped Diamonds, Chevrons and wide Echo quilting.

I should have photographed the binding, very skinny, applied binding and quite worn.

And it’s so so soft.

I hope you all get to pop over to Taryn’s site and enjoy the links to other’s quilts…and if you have a Red and White Quilt, don’t forget to join in the fun.