Thursday, October 21, 2021

A Rose by Any Other Name...

If you have been reading our blog for a while, you will know that Teri and I (Kara) have a love for all things vintage, especially quilts. Over the past few years, our collection has grown, and while most of my quilts are still in storage, that hasn't stopped me from purchasing a few more since I have been back stateside. My most recent purchase was a quilt style that I have been hoping to add to my collection—an appliqué quilt—and the Rose of Sharon block is one of my favorites. This Rose of Sharon quilt may be the closest thing to a Baltimore Album quilt that I may ever own. The pattern, sometimes called a Whig Rose, is quite old and often used in Baltimore Album quilts. Unfortunately, my current budget does not include purchasing an album quilt should one come up for sale.

I haven't had a chance to take it to my favorite appraiser, Phyllis Hatcher, but I do know a few things about it. It most likely came from North Carolina and the auction house gave a time period of the first quarter of the 20th century. I think it might be a little older than that, but I will have to wait and see. 

It is apparent in a couple of spots that the tan areas used to be green and have degraded over the course of time. There are just a few spots that show what the green looked like before it faded

I am hopeful that the red is Turkey Red and will have that confirmed when I take it to be appraised. The fabric has a similar look to a Turkey Red Snowball quilt that I already own.

It is a summer-weight quilt, and what little batting is in it has definitely shifted a bit, as you can see when it is held up to the light.

An unexpected surprise upon receiving the quilt, was the initials that were embroidered on the bottom.

We have had an interesting time trying to interpret them, but the periods after each two initials lead us to believe that maybe it was three different makers. One thought is they were all sisters with the same initials but they all three had different ways of making those initials. Of course, that is just an assumption, and we will most likely never know the story behind this quilt.

So why purchase old quilts that have very little information attached to them and are in various states of disrepair? To me, each quilt I buy is a piece of a puzzle of what quilters of the past chose to create. Every quilt has something special that spoke to me and connected me to the original maker—whether it be the pattern, materials, or technique used. Do you have any old quilts that have spoken to you? We would love to hear about them!

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Road Trip!

Teri and I (Kara) are off on our first road-trip together since I came home from Germany and we decided to make the most of it—a stop at the Virginia Quilt Museum, an antique mall stroll, and a quick visit to a local winery. We will be teaching our Village Wanderings—Shops this weekend at the Charlottesville Area Quilters Guild and we can't wait! 

See you next week and hope you have as much fun this weekend as we will!

Thursday, October 7, 2021

Appliqué at the National Quilt Museum: Part 2

This week, we finish our appliqué tour at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah. Both of the remaining exhibits featured tiny quilts. A full-sized appliquéd album quilt is impressive, and then there are the album quilts that are the size of a typical block. Mind-blowing work. I (Teri) was in awe and inspired to attempt some small stitching.


Note the size difference between these two quilts.

I have always loved this block; it was the first appliqué class that I taught. 

Beautiful border

Remember—this quilt is only 14.25" square; the whole quilt! See description above.

Zooming in, you can see that she actually used ribbon embroidery to create these standard appliqué blocks. What a fabulous idea!!


Yes, I know this is not appliqué, but I love a log cabin, and this is just spectacular! It WAS sunshine, and seriously—4800 tiny strips of dupioni silk? Go, Amy Pabst!!



So, my math may not be the best, but I am figuring that if the entire quilt is less than 11", each block is about 2.5" square. Those are some tiny leaves!!


       I think small might be a bit easier for me with this kind of appliqué.




Block detail





I was so drawn to the tiny hexies and the broderie perse in the center that I didn't even notice until I looked at my photos that the border is filled with dancing ladies.


And then there are the doll house!

Even now, I look at these enlarged photos and see details I missed when I was looking at the real things—because those details were TINY. And I have aging eyes. This work was truly impressive and inspiring.  

Even the windows were magnificent.

It is said that size matters. Whether your quilt is full-sized or miniature, it is all equally impressive!!