Thursday, December 26, 2019

Happy Holidays!

We hope you are all enjoying a wonderful holiday,
 filled with love, joy, peace, and kindness—
and time for a bit of stitching!

Enjoy the season!!
With love from our homes to yours,
Teri and Kara

Friday, December 20, 2019

A Creative Trial and Error

When Teri and I (Kara) began our In the Garden quilt, the plan was for Teri to make the whole quilt since she would be teaching it in the states, and I would make individual block projects and/or shop samples. The quilt is finished and you can read about it here, but I am slowly chipping away at the individual blocks. The most recent one that I have finished is the violet block.

Having just a block is not as attractive as a finished project when it is on display in a store, so I wanted to create a little wall hanging out of this sweet set of violets. Deciding on a wall hanging was the easy part, but figuring out how to do it and what materials to use? Now that was the challenge. What I started with was not what became the end result, so I thought I would show you some of the ideas and trial layouts that I had before I was happy with the outcome.

My first idea was a mix of patchwork with a little crazy quilt embellishment. I gathered fabrics and trims in purples and greens.

I had a surprising amount of different trims
in these two colors.
A selection of coordinating fabrics.

Checking to see if the colors are good.

Idea #1

Idea #2

Idea #3

Idea #4

Idea #5

I was just not liking my original plan and everything I tried wasn't turning out the way I thought it would. Walking away from it was the best choice since I wanted to chuck it all out the window. My thinking time is when I walk the hounds so while we were walking, my vintage lace collection came to mind and I decided to give that a try when we got back.

"Try the lace Mom!"

This crocheted trim seemed like it had potential. In the end it didn't make the cut, but I liked the green velvet frame.

With the velvet frame, but not sure where to go from here.

This lace seemed like a better fit along with a yarn-dyed piece of fabric.

And the winner is...

A different lace and even a different purple fabric than any of the ones I had originally chosen,
but I was finally happy with the look.

The challenge with this block was to do something that would highlight not detract. Everything I had tried was just too much competition for the simplicity of the violets. The green velvet ribbon makes a nice frame and the lace is a good, texture contrast with the cream-colored wool. I felt that they all played nicely together and would make a really, sweet wall hanging. In a perfect world, it would be quilted, bound, and hanging on my wall, but Christmas and our daughter's wedding at the beginning of the new year have made sure that hasn't happened. At least it is a lot closer to being completed and hopefully you have enjoyed seeing the process from start to almost finished. 

How do you decide what works and what doesn't when you are creating? Do you draw out a plan or just start cutting? Do you have a tried and true method? We'd love to hear about your creative process and maybe your process will help someone else!

If you would like to make your own set of violets please click HERE to purchase the pattern.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Kaffe Fassett in Bath, Part 2

The American Museum and Gardens in Bath, UK, opened its doors in 1961 for the first time at Claverton Manor. It is the only museum outside the United States dedicated to the American arts. Unfortunately, the manor part of the museum was closed for Christmas decorating, but thankfully the Kaffe Fassett exhibit was held in another building, so much to may delight, we were able to see the unique combination of old and new quilts. As promised, here are the rest of the quilts from the exhibit. We hope you enjoy them!

Katy Clark Elmore, 1937
Chula, Missouri

Dotty Fans
Kaffe Fassett, 2017

Scrappy Nine Patch
19th Century

A simple block
Love that pop of blue!

Pastel Nine Patch
Kaffe Fasset, 2017

A great use of a floral print for the center.
The quilting certainly highlights the fabric.

Late 19th Century
Cooperstown, NY

Such a unique quilt pattern, but appropriate
given the quilt's origin.
Amazing, what a chain stitch can do!

Technicolour Circles
Kaffe Fassett, 2017

I missed the caption on this quilt, but it is a wonderful use and placement of fabrics with a simple 9-patch.

Oh, to find this fabric today!
Beautiful simplicity

Coleus Columns
Liza Prior Lucy, 2017

A perfect use for a unique print
Great quilting

Kaffe Fassett, 2017
This quilt was based on a bridal chest quilt from Pennsylvania, circa 1832

Cigar Silk Ribbon Quilt top
Circa 1880

Beautiful upcycling!
Great stitching!

Red Ribbons
Kaffe Fassett,  2017

Log Cabin-Light and Dark Variation
Mrs. H. A. Batchelor, Michigan
Second half of the 19th century

The use of black silk for half of the Log Cabin blocks, creates a wonderful secondary design.

Badge of Honor
Kaffe Fassett, 2017

Great care was taken to honor the original. From a distance, it is hard to tell them apart.

Dr. Sarah Taylor Middleton Rogers, 1852
Crosswicks, New Jersey

This was a prize-winning quilt for obvious reasons!

I can't imagine piecing this with silk!

Giant Blocks
Kaffe Fassett, 2017
(and my model husband)

Hopefully, you have enjoyed the second half of our tour of this wonderful exhibit. There were so many inspiring quilts to be seen, and it was interesting to see Kaffe's modern take on some extraordinary antique quilts. Have you been to any quilt exhibits lately? Did you have a favorite? We would love for you to share about different exhibits around the world that you have seen. We can always use a little inspiration to keep us stitching!

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Kaffe Fasset in Bath, Part One

A couple of weeks ago, I (Kara) wrote about a lovely quilt shop, Poppy Patch, over in England, with a little teaser of the Kaffe Fasset exhibit at the American Museum in Bath, UK. Wait no more, because today and next week, I will be sharing some of the amazing antique quilts and the Kaffe Fasset reproductions of those quilts. 

This was one of my favorite exhibits ever. For me, it was the best of both worlds—antique quilts and Kaffe Fassett fabrics. While Teri and I don't usually work with really bright colors, there is a "bright" side of me that really enjoyed seeing a bright, modern reproduction of some fantastic  antique quilts.                                                                                                                                    The old was displayed near the new, which allowed the viewer to see the similarities and contrasts between the two quilts. Where possible, I have tried to show the quilts in the same way, so you can enjoy them in that way, too!

Believe it or not, this is the back side of a Log Cabin quilt (shown below)

The center

My finger for scale! Such tiny pieces!

Some of the wonderful fabrics.

Stonewall 2017
Kaffe Fassett

The back side of the previous quilt.
Log Cabin-Barn Raising variation
Sarah Bryant, circa 1886

Log Cabin close up

Sunburst by Elizabeth (Cannon) Mitchell
Late 19th Century
St. Cloud, Minnesota

It's hard to tell, but the quilting was done using red thread.

The center

Close-up of the quilting

Starburst 2017
Kaffe Fasset

Hexagonal Star Quilt Top
Circa 1885
Hand pieced over papers

Hands down, this was my favorite.

Notice how the silks were fussy-cut.

What an amazing border!

This was my husband's favorite!
Bold Hexagons 2017
Kaffe Fassett and Liza Prior Lucy

More hexagons!
Mosaic Diamonds
Ann Eliza Urquhart, 1861
Southhampton County, Virginia

Hand pieced and hand quilted

Love these fabrics and how the hexagons are quilted.

Green Boxes
Kaffe Fassett, 2017 

Quaker Square in a Square
Circa 1835-1850
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

This quilt was owned by a prominent Quaker family.

Squares on Point
Kaffe Fassett, 2017

Tippecanoe and Tyler Too
Elizabeth Karen, 1840's

A beautiful chintz!

Star close-up

Tippecanoe and Tyler Too
Liza Prior Lucy, 2017

The carefully cut stripes used in the stars gives a swirl appearance.

What an exhibit! It was certainly worth the winding drive to get to the American Museum. I've heard that they have a wonderful textile exhibit, but unfortunately that part of the museum was closed. Probably a good thing since I don't know if I could have taken in any more splendid quilts! 

There were too many amazing quilts for one post, so come back next week to see more of this awesome exhibit. Here are a few teasers of what's to come!