Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Skinny 'T' Milestone

A successful week - all Skinny 'T' blocks pieced and sewn together with sashing and cornerstones.  This will be followed by a solid border and then another pieced section.  I'm tentative on this green (can you tell that's green?) for the border.  Final decision will come after the next section is complete.  Cutting will commence shortly.  The most time consuming part of the 'T' blocks was fabric selection - the pitfalls of a healthy stash.  Am I right?

Hope you find some sewing time mixed in your holiday!

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Travel Wrap Up

I have seven more Skinny 'T' blocks to piece.  I hope to have a completed center section to share soon.  I've calculated the first border dimensions to fit the second pieced section.  Now to get crackin'.

One afternoon of my vacation was spent at Old Sturbridge Village to view the exhibit 'Early New England Quilts: Repurposed, Refashioned, and Recycled' (on display thru early Feb, 2019).  Although the exhibit is small, the items on view were exceptional.  If you're interesting in visiting the living museum, the timing is great.

The featured quilt from the exhibit (c1840) was made by Susannah Allen Anderson Howard (1813 - 1891) from Ware, MA.  Nearly 12,000 pieces, likely from old garments and household textiles, were used to complete this quilt which was probably made for her marriage to Emery Howard in 1839.  The proportions of my photo seem to have skewed in cropping, but a close-up follows.

One of my favorites was the Orange Peel quilt (c1830) attributed to Matilda Fiske, Sturbridge, MA.   She was my kinda girl - the quilt was appliqued rather than pieced and the melons float, so no worry about melon ends meeting.

I'm in love with the indigo pockets in the next photo.  All cotton items on the mannequin are from 1830 - 1840.  Love that indigo!  The pieced quilt to the right of the mannequin (c1820) is from the Arnold family of Providence, RI - relatives of the infamous Benedict.

There was a kids event going on the day I visited.  The period activity was a pleasant addition to the living museum.

The morning of the following day I visited Old Deerfield Village in Deerfield, MA - a New England treasure.  The village is perfect for a quiet stroll of picturesque historic homes.  The draw for me is the fantastic graveyard (carved tombstones from the late 1600's forward) and the Memorial Hall Museum (the best $6 you'll ever spend).

I'll share more tombstone carvings near Halloween, but how cool is this?  You aren't allowed to clean the markers, so most are adorned with bird droppings.  The earliest carvings are skeleton heads with angel wings followed by angelic faces and wings.  Again, I think cropping altered dimensions.

The Memorial Hall Museum (founded in 1870) includes a quilt room.  The Stars, Hexagons and Polygons quilt top (c1860) was made by Mrs. Carpenter of Vermont.  It contains 82,000 1/4" pieces.  The lower right shows the back of the quilt top.  I think it's rather sad - similar to my Grandma's Welch Grape Jelly box of quilt pieces I posted about on the old blog.

The Rising Star quilt was owned by Martha Washington (DeWolf) Briggs (1815 - 1879) of West Deerfield, MA.

The pumpkins are growing - anticipation for my favorite season!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Schwenkfelder Heritage Center

I visited the  Schwenkfelder Heritage Center last week while vacationing in Pennsylvania.  The beautiful textiles were a treat. The plaid silk dress from 1860 was very fetching.   The two brown dresses on the platform were believed to be worn for weddings in 1892 and 1894.

I especially enjoyed the German Sampler exhibit.  The sampler above was made by Rosina Schultz over the period 1809 - 1817.
The center tulip design is unique to Rosina.  My time was limited, so I wasn't able to study the samplers closely.  There were many extraordinary pieces in wonderful condition.

There was also a Perkiomen Valley split nine patch quilt exhibit.  The quilt above is circa 1900.

I'll share some photos from Old Sturbridge Village and the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Hall Museum in another post.

I'll close with a photo of a charming barn from Lancaster County, PA.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Porch Sewing

Schedules permitting, Jan and I get together once a week during warm weather months for porch sewing.  We usually work on hand quilting small projects - doll or crib quilts.  My current work-in-progress is from Lori's Humble Quilts  'Cheddar Cheese and Crackers' quilt-along from January 2010.  Yikes, way overdue to quilt and bind.  This is the first top I'm hand quilting freehand with no chalk guidelines.

I've been working on Skinny 'T' blocks - 12 complete, 13 to go.  The first six blocks included just pink, blue and brown.  That seemed too repetitive, so I expanded the color pool.  I have a couple green fabrics I'm considering for borders, so hoping to bridge the color transition.

Have a sunny, summer week!

Contrasting Flying Geese

I've started a project requiring small Flying Geese units with dark nose and lighter wings.  Luckily, I ran across the spark of another ...