Thursday, January 17, 2019

Jump on the Bandwagon

My newest project is a medallion quilt. I don't know how big it wants to be. Medallion quilts are some of the oldest styles of quilts, popular in the late 1700's. Like every other trend, it has re-surged in popularity. I decided to jump on the bandwagon in my quest to try every style of quilting.

 I received some vintage quilt blocks, including this charming maple leaf block. It is hand pieced and the fabrics look to be from the 1920's. I gently washed it in Synthrapol to clean it and remove some red dye that had "bled" onto the adjoining fabric. I love how well it works, and the block looks much more colorful. I guess it got dirty from being handled, it wasn't faded from light.

I got the impetus to make a medallion quilt from my local guild, who is having an ongoing project adding borders. I like this braided border and used strips from my scrap bag to get started. I added some Moda prints to fill in the volume of the braids, alternating light with darker greys.

I love the soft timeless look. I have added in a teensy bit of pink and blue to draw attention back to the maple leaves. It isn't evident in the picture, but there is an outer border of muslin. I haven't decided the next row yet, maybe some applique. 

21" x 21" so far. 

In other sewing studio news I mended another vintage block and made it into a pillow for a cousin who wistfully asked at the last family reunion, "What do I have to do to gt a quilt? Have a baby or get cancer?" Certainly not! 

This vintage block was cut out of an old quilt that used a wool blanket as the batting. Before the advent of nice cotton, synthetic, bamboo, or wool batting old blankets were not unusual for filler. Modern batting became available in the 1950's first as polyester, then more natural fibers in the last few decades.

 I picked out the center circle which was shredded, something that happens to old fabric either from dye or fiber breakdown. I replaced it with vintage fabric from the 30's, turned upside down to make the color look right. For those of you too young to know, the girl is playing with a hoop and stick.

Hand appliqued and then quilted to match the stitches of the block. 
The center circle balances out with the other sweet fabrics.

Cute vintage fabric from the 30's or 40's. 

The back of the pillow. I like to use a zipper so the pillow cover is snug. 
And, lastly, I scoffed at panel quilts which are quite popular around these parts. I decided to make a duvet cover with panel fabric that I received for Christmas, to cover our down comforter. We encourage our pets to get on the bed, so a nice quilt is out of the question in the winter. After I put this duvet cover together I understood the popularity of panel quilts, they go together FAST. My spouse likes this duvet cover a lot, and it fits in with the theme of living in the back country. Black bears do live near us.

Panels will camouflage the pet hair. 
In the warmer months when we don't need a down comforter, we do use quilts.... and I am working on a new one that I will reveal later. The pets don't sleep with us when it is warmer, and after all, quilts are my thing. Don't worry that I am a quilter who doesn't even use one. You can never have too many quilts.


  1. I've read all your recent posts, Jane, and they made me want to follow you. Interesting projects you work on and your take on things too. I like posts that are not strictly just the measurements of the quilting kind of thing. Meanwhile I have a black Lab named Murphy(and a German Shepherd Rex) and my daughter has a black Lab, Abby! Anyway, Happy planning, thinking, stitching to you!

    1. Greetings Jocelyn! I just looked up your wonderful blog and feel like you are a knidred spirit. We share so many common interests. I like your writing style, and your comfy visiting style. Thanks for all of your kind words. Happy sewing and knitting back at you! your new friend, Jane