Wrapping up 2019
Looking back at my resolutions from last year, I accomplished about half. I am happy with that.
I finished repairing our friend Chuck’s quilt, not much more than a year after he had entrusted it to me! It was made of all kinds of scraps — silk, polyester, toweling, etc., and the center layer was a curtain that had absolutely shredded. I took the layers apart, and replaced as few of the pieces as possible with similar fabrics. Chuck does not like heavy quilts, so I used washed cotton flannel for the batting layer, and re-tied. He was very happy with the results, and I think the maker would have been happy too.
I finished putting Shirt Stripes together with machine stitching through all layers, but it was too big to get through my home sewing machine, so I need to finish it with hand stitching. I also finished the hand-quilting on the large outer blocks of Pixilated. I tried a lot of different threads to get the look I wanted — stout enough to show up, but not so heavy that I couldn’t thread the needle. I finally settled on variegated DMC 70 weight, those tiny little balls (maybe meant for crochet?), used double. Now I need to fill in the center with yo-yos and embroidered flowers and stems.
Besides some small quilts that I did write about, I made a chair cover to use as a portable high chair. This one was at the request of my daughter, for her one-year-old son. It required some spatial relation thinking, to figure out how to get it all padded and seamed, since it folds both over the back of a chair, and over the front of the baby!
My daughter had picked this fabric a few years ago, for curtains for their camper, so I was glad to use up the rest!
I also made some fabric baskets for my sister, a Chicago Bears fan.
Here are the small quilts I made throughout the year.
Our online art quilt group has a quarterly challenge, and I did complete a small quilt for each theme.
Unexpected Bloggy Goodness
In April, I went to Phoenix with my husband, and I was able to meet up with blog friend Andrea Huelsenbeck of ARHtistic License. She has so many interests and is a prolific blogger; there are always lots of new inspiring things on her blog. We had a great time hiking together and then we went to lunch and discussed art and books and so much more!
Later on in the year, Andrea interviewed me for her blog, and I really enjoyed that; it made me define my quilting interests and goals. The best part was that she has done a whole series of interviews with quilters, and through those I discovered quilters that were new to me. Some of them have had quilts on display at International Quilt Festival in Houston — I wish I had known when I went there!
I bought this top because I liked the big, bold squares, and the white borders are made from flour sacks. Two are facing out and the rest are facing in. They say Washburn-Crosby Gold Medal Flour, with the slogan, “Eventually…why not now?” Checking the Gold Medal Flour website, it seems like these sacks would have been from 1907 – the 1950s.
This pink and white flower basket quilt has fancy quilting in the plain pink squares. I used the Photoshop filter “find edges” and then converted the photo to black and white so you can see the stitch design.
I bought this coverlet at my favorite consignment shop. Its consignor had left information that her grandmother made it. I left word that I would love to interview her for a little more information, but I never heard back.
I think it is the Whig Rose pattern (Davison’s Handweaver’s Pattern Book, p. 176), but the narrow lines framing the rose motifs are very unusual. The whole point of the overshot technique is for the pattern wefts to float over a group of warps, to make a block of color. So normally the circular roses would occur continuously across the piece. I wonder if the weaver was concerned about someone snagging long wefts, and decided to add in more tie-down threads.
One result of this threading is that the wefts couldn’t pack down, and the motif got elongated.
The coverlet was made in two narrow panels, and it has been patched with handwoven jeans twill! And at one point, someone added this Japanese-inspired print to the ends.
Also this year, I picked up a bargain batch of vintage, lace-trimmed sheets and pillowcases — I went to an outdoor antique sale just after a big rain shower, and the booth owner thought it would be better to send them all home with me than to have to wash and dry them himself. 🙂
Things I Did Instead of Working on Textiles
I only did 27 posts on this blog all year, but I am also working on a family history blog for my husband’s family archives, and over there I did 87 posts! For each one of those I scanned about 10 handwritten pages and/or 30 slides and photos. I estimate that I have transcribed over 100 letters so far. My father-in-law was in China in 1946, and also present at the atomic bomb tests at Bikini Island, so the history is so interesting. After about 1000 more letters, I should be able to concentrate on textiles again! 🙂