Grandmother’s Flower Garden

1 11 2013

Here’s another of the “vintage” fabric quilts, but this one was not a top that I purchased;  it started as a small pile of finished blocks and scraps found at an antique store.  By the time I came across these beauties, I also had a small collection of vintage fabrics, so I hand pieced many more, enough to make a quilt.

This quilt was hand quilted by Quilting Plus and they did a wonderful job.

Grandmother's Flower Garden, 1993 72" x 79.5"

Grandmother’s Flower Garden, 1993
72″ x 79.5″

I can identify the blocks that I made from the different yellow in the centers.  I could not find an exact match, and had to settle for a duller, paler hue.  Most of the other solids are vintage.

The red block was in the original set I purchased.  Even though it stands out so dominantly, I just had to include it.  Love the scrappy look!!

Grandmother's Flower Garden, detail

Grandmother’s Flower Garden, detail

I remember piecing them together into the top while on vacation at a friend’s cabin in Tahoe, along with very young children.  It was a relaxing time.

Trip Around the World

20 09 2013

This classic example of a vintage 1930’s Trip Around the World quilt was made from a quilt top that I was delighted to find at an antique show in the early 1990’s.  I was delighted because the quilt was fabulous and the price was very reasonable, mainly because the quilt was unfinished, a pile of unjoined quilt sections.  I can finish this and have a beauty, I thought.

On the drive home, I panicked.  What if it’s unfinished because the quilter got halfway through and found that the pieces didn’t fit together?  Crisis averted—the pieces fit, and only needed hand-stitching to complete.  Having learned my lesson on a previous quilt (see story here), I took the time to add blue triangles all around the edge, so that it could be bound more easily.

This quilt was hand quilted by Quilting Plus in 1993.

Trip Around the World


Trip Around the World
74″ x 87″
Photography by Sibila Savage

This detail will show how amazingly this talented quilter used all the flecks of colors in a very wide variety of  printed fabrics to make the transitions from one solid color to the next.


I have always assumed that the quilt top I bought was made from a kit, where all the wonderful fabrics were provided to the quilter.  Although a possibility, Audrey and Douglas Wiss suggest differently in their book Folk Quilts and How to Recreate Them, 1983.  I found this book at EBHQ’s  library sale, particularly interested in the picture seen here:

eThese authors suggest that scraps of pastels “must have been saved for years before this piece was attempted”  and “Only through careful planning and arrangement of the shades of these solid, calico, and striped materials was the quilter able to achieve this delightful, almost kaleidoscopic effect.”

Unfortunately, the true story of each of these quilts is lost forever.  I guess this loss is part of what fuels this blog and my attempt to include as much information about my works as I can remember.