Star Progress and a crib quilt top


I am making progress on the star top.   here is the before picture


after fixing it I started hand quilting it

here it is today.


I will finish up the center  and then do something different on the border

I love the clam-shell fan design but want to add some variety


I will post more about that soon.

It might not be easy to see in the pictures but the diamonds that make up the star are made up of many pieces.   I imagine that the maker used up a lot of scrap pieces to make it .

here is a close up of one diamond before I trimmed it.

one pieced

The quilting helps to hide all that messy piecing.

Here is a look at the back.



I got a new partially completed crib quilt today


it is missing the border on the left side So I will probably make a new border for the entire top.

I have some embroidery to do to finish it (click pictures to enlarge)

I love old quilt tops and I love to finish them.   I write about these old tops very often and people forget that I do make new quilts as well. Here are a few that I have made

my quilts

I have several more planned both old and new….stay tuned ;)

Happy Quilting


Simple can be great

The Celebrate Hand Quilting Facebook page that I am a member of does a weekly show and tell where the members show their hand quilted quilts.  This weeks theme is Christmas.

I have a few but I decided to show this one.


It has been folded for a while so it has creases. They will come out after being opened up for a while.  When I re fold it I will fold it differently so they the creases are in a different place.  It is a good Idea to re-fold quilts periodically so that they don’t get permanent folds.

It is not really a Christmas Quilt but being red and green it has a Christmas feel to me.    This was an Antique top that I bought from eBay and then hand quilted.

What I love about it is the simplicity of the pattern and the secondary designs.   Even the most simple pattern can create secondary designs when the blocks come together.

Looking at it one way I see green stars with a red background.


or red stars with green background


The actual blocks are quite simple,  a square in a square.   There are 2 blocks in alternating colors.

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when you put them together like this


they create a very different looking design


I did simple hand quilting with dark burgundy thread which shows better on the back


I have another vintage top in the same pattern but in this one there are many different fabrics used.


It is amazing how different the same blocks can look with different fabrics!

Happy Quilting




Sometimes I buy a quilt top even though I know I shouldn’t. The one that arrived today is a case in point.    I saw it on eBay and loved the simplicity.   In the picture I could tell that it wasn’t flat….but I figured it would be relatively easy to fix.  This is the picture that the seller posted.


I can tell it isn’t flat, the bottom has a pretty good sized fold in it in the center, but the pictures did not show how bad it is.

This is what the seller said about it:

This is a vintage machine pieced lone star variation quilt top. Cotton and cotton blends. Some stains.  It measures approximately 84″ x 80″

I measured it.   It is 74″ wide at the top, 84 inches wide at the bottom, the left side is 99 inches, the right side is 94 inches and here is what it looks like


It is way beyond a simple fix!

I will have to take it apart and start over.  I will use all the old pieces of the star  and re-cut them to the correct size ,and the border will be cut to the correct length so that it will be closer to square.

It has a lot of potential  and I think it will be a great quilt but it is going to be a lot more work than I would have guessed.  As you know if you are a regular reader this is nothing I have not encountered before.   It really won’t be all that hard to fix and I will post pictures of how i do it soon.

Happy quilting


Borders next

I finished piecing the top


It looked like this before I added the pieces on the edge


I used the same size pieces on the edge as in the center and then cut them off


Right now it is 64″ x 80″ and I plan to add a border.   I was thinking gray but I had some green right next to me so I put it next to the top.


I like it.   I also have plenty of the print left so I might add a triple border…gray, and green and print….check back to see the finished top next time.


Happy quilting


Liberated Baskets Finished


Back In April I started a liberated basket quilt. see that post here

I finished hand quilting it today.

I used Aurifil 12 wt thread and a big stitch Quilting needle (Colonial Needle Co.) for the quilting.   The Batting is Mountain Mist Creme Rose, and the backing is unbleached Muslin.

After I got it out of the wash I took it outside to get some pictures.   (click pictures to enlarge)


It finished at 64″ x 78″

Teddy gave it a test inside on his chair.


While I was outside I took some more garden pictures

Happy Quilting/gardening


String pieced vintage quilt top


This vintage quilt top is my new favorite.   I don’t know the name of the block but it is similar to this one

string snowball

This block is called String Snowball.  I finished one like it a while back but the blocks were arranged like this

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Here is the quilt

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This quilt top has that same string pieced section but instead of the 1/4 circles  it has the black footballs and the yellow squared to set the pieces together.


There are lots of fun fabrics (click pictures to enlarge)

I am looking forward to hand quilting this one!!

The new York Beauty quilt is finished!  it is in the washer right now….I will post pictures tomorrow.

Happy Quilting


Vintage quilt top pair


I have a pair of vintage tops today.

These came from the same seller who got them at a farm auction in Omaha Nebraska.  I am sure they were made by the same person.   They have so many fabrics that are the same.

This blue one (presumably for a boy)


and a pink one (for a girl)


The are in pretty good condition despite the fact that they have been washed.   Washing a vintage top prior to quilting is never a good idea.  They can fray so much in the washing machine that they fall apart!  In this case the only real damage is a lot of thread that will need trimming.


They also will need a bit of repair to make them easier to quilt

The  solid fabric is larger than the pieced sections and then forced to “fit” causing a lot of puckering


The edge of this one almost looks ruffled.  I will need to take off the solid fabrics, press all the pieces, measure and re-cut the solids and sew it all back together.

Here are pictures of the blue one (click pictures to enlarge)

And here are pictures of the pink one

I think these should always stay together.  They are different.  the pieced sections in the pink are wider than in the blue (one square wider) But I like to imagine that they were planned to be given to siblings and I hate to break up a family.

Happy Quilting



half done


I have just about finished 1/2 of the hand quilting on the vintage New York Beauty

I still need to quilt the narrow yellow border and the center diagonal row of sashing before I move on to the next block.   I start in the center and then work out to the edge.   Next I start in the center again and work to the other edge.  This way I don’t get any wrinkles …I work them out as I work to the edge. Click on the pictures to enlarge

Teddy went to see the groomer.  She gave him a patriotic neckerchief….since he wont be there again before the 4th of July

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I think Julie does a great job!

Happy Quilting


Progress and Plans


I am making progress on the New York Beauty quilt.


It is hard to see the stitching in this light but It is coming along.    Here are a few more pictures (click pictures to enlarge)

I have been thinking about fan blocks lately.  One of the Facebook pages I follow (quilts vintage and antique) has been posting fan block quilts and if you look at this quilt each of these blocks has what is essentially a fan block in the corner.

Remember these quilts and tops I made with vintage fan blocks and new fabrics.

I have some more vintage tops, here are a few

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and I have several more fan blocks. I have 100 in this group


I also have the purple fabric that I think really sets off the blocks.

I am thinking of how I might set them…..

Hand quilting gives me a lot of time to think…..and it will be a long time before I get to these…but it is fun to think about what might be next.

Happy Quilting


Vintage quiilt top…needs some TLC


I presented my Lecture/trunk show last night at the Black Swamp Quilt Guild in Bowling Green Ohio last night.  What a great group!!  Thanks to everyone in the guild for such a great reception!!

This top is one that I showed at the meeting.


The Pattern is a simple one (although not simple to piece)  just 2 pieces, a square and an elongated hexagon.   There are a lot of names for the pattern…..Five Crosses, Lattice Block, Church Windows, Ogden Corners, Kansas Dugout, Old Fashioned Quilt, Ozark Tile name a few.  So what should I call it?    I have absolutely no idea what the maker of the top called it or which pattern was used, or if she drafted it herself based on one she saw.  I can’t pretend to know  but since people like to assign names to things I will use the one that I think most people are familiar with…”Kansas Dugout”.   If I use that name this is the piecing that comes to mind for most people so it does the job.

It is so interesting to me how the piecing was done.   All the hexagon pieces were sewn together first and then the squares were set in.  You can see that the maker set in all the orange squares and then either ran out of orange, or ran out of time. (the brown you see is the floor…there is no brown fabric just empty space)

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It looks really funny when you hold it up….in pictures you see the floor through the holes and it doesn’t show the holes nearly as much.

it has some interesting fabrics

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And Teddy likes it

I will never be able to get an exact match for that orange…..I can come close but it wont ever be perfect so I plan to use a different color for all the remaining squares,   I think red will work well.

I have a top in this pattern  from the same era where all the hexagons are different fabrics and all the squares are red


I love old quilt tops…

Now for a garden update

Happy Gardening and quilting!