Thursday, November 27, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses

No sewing today - enjoy the holiday with your family!  Happy Thanksgiving from all of us here at Little Quilts.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Quilting - Man to Man

Marshall brought in his son-in-law Jason’s first quilt. He needed binding fabric. It’s great to see ‘guy’ quilters share their quilts. However Marshall did tell us he’s not sure if Jason has the ‘quilting fever’. Marshall thinks there is still hope for Jason!!

Monday, November 24, 2014

It’s been an amazing week for Show and Tell at Little Quilts

 Christie brought in a jaw-dropping show and tell.  She was lucky enough to visit the Temecula Quilt Shop (very close to San Diego) and she brought home a pattern called “Postage Due”.  This is the start of her Postage Due quilt.  It’s hard to get a perspective on the block size in a picture, but each tiny square is ½” in size and it takes 17 rounds to make a block.  This is going to be one amazing quilt when Christie gets finished!

 Jean came in Saturday with this unique wall hanging.  She collected vintage linens, cut off the usable parts and appliquéd them together Crazy Quilt style and embellished them with embroidery, lace, and beadwork of her own.  We loved her original setting idea.  What a treasure!  So glad we could share with you. 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Second Saturday Sampler ptt 3 and Rug camp Show and Tell

Christmas offers a great incentive to finish projects for gifts. This neat wall-hanging was started in our traditional wool appliqué class using a Lori Smith, From My Heart To Your Hands, pattern. What a special gift for some lucky recipient.
Jane and her friends are all working on mug mats for quick and easy Christmas exchange gifts. They found this cute pattern on Pinterest. 
This looks like a picture of stained glass, but Mary Ellen took it at the Black Bear Rug Hooking Camp she attended at Unicoi State Park near Dahlonega, GA, last month. At the camp, everyone lays their rugs on the floor for everyone to admire … Mary Ellen took the pictures looking down from a balcony above the floor.   
  Look for the Lady Liberty standing on the ark – that’s Mary Ellen’s quilt!
       We thought this was the cutest quilt. We saw it at market. It featured some of the cute fabric license plates from the Row by Row Experience Shop Hop this summer. Darling quilt!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Second Satrday Sampler Show and Tell - part 2

Many of us have a stack of UFO’s just waiting for us to return to them. Sue is actually finishing a few things before Christmas! These rug punch Christmas stockings are sure to be a special treasure for her family.

 Linda brought several finished projects to Wednesday Workshop. She calls this quilt “What if?” ….What if she cut this….then this….then did this… What a fun quilt and a great stash buster!

Linda also finished a great Halloween quilt featuring a fun Halloween fabric, “The Hauntings.” Very clever the way she showcased different sections of a fabric she really liked – a great technique that could be used with any great focal fabric.
 When one of our customers needed a fast wedding gift with a Caribbean feeling, she went right to the new Batavian Batik and Essential Gem Jelly Roll packs that are new in the shop. With just twenty-four strips in a pack, it’s easy to mix and match the strips for a spectacular quilt.

 Ann brought in her completed "Classic Nutcrackers". This was a block of the month we did many years ago. What a family heirloom this will be. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses

When one moves into a 900 year old house of stone, where does one start with decorating?  Lucy moved into the Manor, Hemingford Grey, in 1939, and immediately started the restoration, realizing very quickly that she would need curtains and bedcovers.  Because it was during war time, fabric was scarce so Lucy had to use her creativity to come up with a solution.
While American-style patchwork was virtually unknown in England at the time, Lucy, a very resourceful seamstress, looked at her fabric stash and recognized the possibilities.  Without ever sacrificing precious wartime clothing ration coupons, Lucy selected favorite pieces of scrap fabric, cut them into squares, combined them with towels and dusters, and pieced everything into bedspreads and furniture covers.
The curtain problem was cleverly solved by buying old hexagon quilts from the early 1800’s and hanging them at the windows. Not only did they work as insulators, they added a splash of color and design to the cold look of the stone walls. 
As with any quilts left out for long lengths of time exposed to the dust and light, the window quilts started to show their age and some of the fabrics began to disintegrate.  Mending them is what inspired Lucy to make her own more complicated patchworks starting in the 1950’S.
All of Lucy’s patchworks were sewn by hand using the English Paper Piecing method.  When she first began, she bought the paper pieces in precut packs…not from Little Quilts, but from a firm in Oxford.  When this became too expensive, she started making her own shapes just like many of us try to do.  Die cutters, photocopiers, and rotary cutters were not available at the time, though, so you can imagine what a tedious job this was.   Lucy frequently enlisted the help of her friends to cut the shapes … now there are some good friends!
Lucy was an artist and clearly had an eye for color and texture.  She made many patchworks besides the Patchwork of the Crosses quilt we’re working on.  Blocks in all her patchworks are like miniature works of art.  Lucy’s finished projects are not technically quilts since they are made of only two layers – the pieced top and a plain backing - with no batting in between.

The majority of her quilts were made when she was in her eighties, and she was still quilting well into her nineties.  According to her daughter-in-law, Diana Boston, children would stop in after school to thread needles for her, and her last few quilts were stitched with white thread so she could see the stitching.
Patchwork and writing were winter hobbies – spring, summer, and fall were reserved for gardening.  All her stitching was done sitting by the fire in the warmest, but also the darkest room of the house with artificial light, as depicted in this scene from the movie "From Time To Time" starring Maggie Smith.
What an inspiration for all of us!

For more inspiration, check out our Pinterest Board where I'm posting  gorgeous "work of art" blocks from pictures sent in by all of you.
If you need more patchwork papers, glue refills or other supplies, check out our website.  Don't forget about the new Fussy Cut Finders we found at Quilt Market.  They're available on the website, too.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

November Second Saturday Sampler Show and Tell - pt 1

Jan completed this work of art using the High Tech Tucks technique made popular by Caryl Bryer Fallert. The fabrics are what make these wall hangings sparkle. The background fabric and the gradient fabrics used in this piece were hand dyed by Caryl.
Jean’s wall hanging is her entry for a guild challenge. Guild members were given a black square and a white square of fabric that had to be used in the finished project. Jean worked her “magic” using various thread techniques on her original squares. When she was finished, the original blocks were almost unrecognizable to most members of the guild! 
It’s hard to believe Valerie’s quilt started out as a preprinted Christmas panel. What a cute quilt to use during the holidays!