Monday, May 30, 2011

War & Piecing 1812-2012

Hewson panel
from Andover Fabrics

You may not have realized this but 2012 is the 200th Anniversary of the War of 1812.

The British burned the Capitol Building

 I've been focusing on the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War in 2011, but next year brings a big anniversary of an earlier war when the British invaded the young republic.

There's already one quilt challenge for this anniversary.

The Great Lakes Seaway Trail of  NY and PA invite quilters to make authentic War of 1812-era reproduction-style quilts for the not-for-profit byway travel organization’s 2012 quilt show and competition. They ask for is "cot to coffin" size and they are encouraging  authentic reproduction quilts of fabrics, including cotton, linen, silk, wool and linsey-woolsey; colors made with dyes available in that era; and patterns true to the 1812 . 

Click here for more information:
http://www.seawaytrail.com/quilting.html
And follow the blog about the contest.
http://1812quiltchallenge.blogspot.com/ 
See Moda's page at their Giving Back web address and then click on Great Lakes Seaway over on the right.
http://www.unitednotions.com/un_main.nsf/giving-back!OpenPage


Lucky for fans of early quilts there are several reproduction lines in the works. Moda and I have a collection of chintzes and dress-scale prints called Lately Arrived from London that will be in quilt shops in September.

The Little Molly from Lately Arrived from London
The look is 1780-1820

Andover is working with the Winterthur Museum to print reproductions of the famous John Hewson panel that is featured in several quilts dating to the era. See the featured panel with the vase at the top.
Hewson stripe from Andover

View more examples of the prints in that line at the Busy Thimble blog

Margo Krager has reproductions of several European panels that were popular with Americans in the early 19th century. Her Reproduction Fabrics webstore is laser-printing some of the classics like the Trophy of Arms below. 



See more by clicking here

The American Quilt Study Group is printing two reproductions as a fundraiser, a stripe and a floral. These will be real collector's items.




Click here to find out how to order


And Rose Studios has a panel in a line called Manchester Glory.
Panels are hard to find. Early 19th century prints of any kind are hard to find. Let's hope these reproductions all sell so well that we'll start a fad for plum-colored chintzes and panels of fruit.

The Wellington Victory panel
from a quilt belonging to the Victoria & Albert Museum in London

See quilts with panels by clicking on these links to museum collections:
Two from the Winterthur Museum


And one from the International Quilt Study Center and Museum
2008.040.0060

And check this blog post at the Great Lakes Seaway blog to see more links and period quilts

Friday, May 27, 2011

Apron Collection

I've recently festooned my friend Marty's salon/art gallery with some of the apron collection Terry Thompson and I share.

I've been buying aprons at the thrift shops for a long time.
The fabric is sometimes terrific

The one on the left has cocktail recipes printed on the cotton---handy.

The needlework is also fascinating.
Betty (Marty's Mom) remembers when these crocheted aprons were hot.



She works at the front desk and has been asked if this is her laundry.

Heart-shaped top and one made from a dish towel with an opera scene




We put the chiffon examples in the window


Chiffon aprons are an idea whose time is past.

Rick-rack--- real and printed



A friend recently sent photos of aprons her husband's grandmother designed for the family's Regal Paper Company.

If you haven't seen enough aprons yet go to this Flickr pool of hundreds of vintage apron photos

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Northern Lily/Southern Rose Block 3

#3 Snow Drop Lily
by Ilyse Moore

Here's the third block in  my Northern Lily/Southern Rose series from Moda. Each pattern reflects a regional applique design. This month's is a Northern block, a Northern lily.

Susan Stiff used blue, red and tan prints from
Civil War Homefront and a green Bella Solid from Moda,
the fabrics used in the kit instructions in the pattern.


Here's a better shot of her applique



This is the inspiration block from an antique sampler.
You don't come across many wreaths based on divisions of three or six.
The original might have been from Ohio or Pennsylvania, typical of the one-of-a-kind blocks occasionally seen in samplers from those midland states.


I modified the birds and flowers to reflect my memories of northern winters in Ohio where snowdrop lilies are among the first flowers to break through the snow and cardinals provided the only splash of color in a wintry yard.


Snow Drop lilies are a bulb with a bit of a bluish cast


But I was also thinking of an invasive bulb plant sometimes called a Star of Bethlehem. It's a weed because it reproduces too easily but the star flowers are always a sign of spring after a Northern winter---a Northern Lily.


Snowdrop Lily

My version with Bella Solids and a little blue from Civil War Reunion.
I'm using pieces of monochrome prints from my scrapbag for backgrounds

Ask your shop if they are carrying the Northern Lily/Southern Rose Block-of-the-Month series this year.


Or do an online search for  Moda Northern Lily Southern Rose to find kits and patterns.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Rambler from Civil War Reunion

Here's an old top I have had for years. I bought it in Pennsylvania.


I'd guess its 1840-1860 by the fabrics. The pattern has several names, among them Rambler and Railroad Crossing.

It isn't the best constructed quilt ever made. I've been removing pieces and sending them to be copied for Civil-War-era reproductions. Then when the repro comes back I replace it where the original was. I think the floral above was in Civil War Anthem years ago. 

I made a pattern for my friend Roseanne Smith who thought she could make one that would lay flat. So we drew it out in EQ for the Civil War Reunion collection from Moda.



Roseanne made paper-pieced geese for the corners

A zillion of them. Her patience occasionally wore thin.

But she persisted. She cut the large triangles large and then trimmed them. She used her scrap bag of monochrome prints for the light triangles.



She mitered the stripe for the borders and used the red paisley for the edge triangles.




She's binding it. We'll take a good picture when it's done. Hers is a lot squarer than the original.

You know if that seamstress had been better at sewing the blocks the old top would have been quilted in 1850 and used up. The only reason such a utilitarian top is around in such good shape is that everybody knew that "It will never quilt out."

Here's a PDF file with a free pattern.



Thursday, May 12, 2011

Lately Arrived: A Blurb Book


I've published a little book at Blurb.com called Lately Arrived From London: Cotton Prints & Patchwork Before 1820. It's a companion to my Moda fabric collection called Lately Arrived From London that will be in shops in September 2011.

Here are page spreads from the book

It's difficult to coordinate any kind of print material with a reproduction fabric line as they have such different lead times. But this Print-On-Demand book is available now and cannot be sold out. You can buy it now or buy it later when the fabric arrives in shops. Or when you finish the quilt made from the line.

It's 40 small pages (7" square), full of period illustrations and pictures of the fabric.

The fabric collection recreates prints from the turn of the 19th century when Americans imported their cottons. Traders brought the world’s luxury goods to wharves in Philadelphia, Boston and New York. Each piece is named for a trading ship that sailed into American harbors---the Charming Betsy, the Brigantine Sally, the Ship Surprise.
See more about the fabric by clicking here to see a PDF

In the book I focused on Philadelphia's shops, particularly Chestnut Street, pictured here in the 1840s.
I wrote about the technology and taste that produced the prints. Here's a printed stripe that looks like a warp-printed woven pattern.


I show the original document print (above) and the reproductions

I include a few patterns for period quilts.


And some medallion quilts by my friends for inspiration.


I see it as a gift book, perfect to package with precut JellyRolls or Layer Cakes---or a little quilt made from the fabric.
You order it from Blurb.com. Click here to see a preview of the book:
You can order it as a paperback or a hardback book. Because it's print-on-demand they do not offer a  wholesale price, but they do offer a quantity discount.
The great thing about these Blurb books is there is so little turn-around time. I can do one in a week and have it in my hands the next week. PLUS---no book storage for me.