Fruit Basket Quilt.

12-8-13 001

Ever Since I finished the quilt I have been thinking about quilting this one in the same way.

posted about the top earlier

The Pattern has Many Names

Fruit Basket

Basket of Triangles, Fruit Basket, May Basket Design, The Basket Quilt, The Broken Sugar Bowl, and I’m Sure many more, But I am using Fruit Basket.

The border is all I am fixing.   The individual blocks are all a bit off in uniformity but I can live with that.  When the maker applied the border fabric she cut long strips (longer than need) and hand stitched them on without pinning.  The result of doing it the way is that the fabric stretches as you go and you actually use up more  fabric then needed and cause puckers…in the case almost pleats.

I took of the borders and pressed, and pressed the center then pinned on the borders carefully keeping a straight line with the border.  the outside edges of the quilt were not straight so the border will be used to fix that.

Fruit basket start 002 Fruit basket start 001

once I had a side pinned I sewed it and trimmed of the excess top fabric and the extra length of border fabric. Here is what I cut off

Fruit basket start 003

Now it is flat and ready to mark for Baptist fans.   I am using a 14″ hoop to mark the outside arc of the fans, and when I do the quilting I will eyeball the rest, quilting from the outside arc in.

Fruit basket start 004

When I start a new quilt with a vintage top I think about many things.  I have to make a decision about how much I want to re-make it.  There are quilts that I have totally taken apart and re made.  Sometimes that is needed to make them flat and quiltable or to make them stronger by replacing worn fabrics. Sometimes I simply quilt as they are and retain the original look.  In the quilt I had to decide whether or not to re-orient some blocks.  If you look at the 3 blocks in the lower left edge you can see that they are upside down


I decided to leave this one as the original maker did it.  I think the mistake adds to the charm.

Teddy thinks it time for a play break….when one ear goes up I can see it time for some attention

Fruit basket start 008

Happy Quilting


25 thoughts on “Fruit Basket Quilt.

  1. katechiconi says:

    Hard to believe there was so much excess fabric. The border must have been almost gathered. I’m a great fan of lots of pinning when attaching stuff. It slows you down but it sure gives a better result.

  2. KerryCan says:

    It makes me happy you you left the upside down baskets as they were! I agree it adds to the quirkiness and handmade appeal of the quilt! A real person, distracted by her real life, made a little mistake–I love that.

    • timquilts says:

      It is always a big source of curiosity for me ….who made it….when….who/ what was if for….but I rarely ever know so I just have to imagine….and I like your idea ” A real person, distracted by her real life, made a little mistake….it is perfect

  3. The Quilt Meister says:

    What do you do with all your quilts Tim?

  4. Mary Blackledge Corroo says:

    This will look great when you quilt it! If you have a minute, I wanted to ask you about marking quilts. I always did a sort of meandering pattern or followed the seams to avoid marking. The quilt I’m working on is the first I have ever marked for quilting. I’m using a blue and a white water soluble pencil. It’s mostly rubbing off by itself. I have yet to try to remove the marks. What do you use to mark your tops? I see a pencil in the picture. Is that a regular pencil or something from the quilt store? Do you wipe/erase the marks as you go, when you’re done or do they just come off in the wash? Do you test the fabrics first? I know you’re busy so I do appreciate it if you have time to respond, many thank. Ps. love your blog!

    • timquilts says:

      that is much to big a question to answer here… many choices, and I use so many different things for marking…I will try to do a post in the next few days about the subject…many of them do wipe/wear off before you ever get to the quilting…and some never want to wash out…..for a short answer the pencil in the picture is a .5 mm lead pencil from the office store…the inexpensive disposable kind

  5. audrey says:

    I really love the funky placement of the baskets–it really does make it more charming. Also, anything quilted with the Baptist Fan pattern is a star in my book.:)

  6. Connie Johnson says:

    So glad you’re leaving those upside down baskets. Things like that are what I love about old quilts. Fan quilting is my favorite. Thanks for taking the time to respond about the marking question. I trust your judgement about all elements of quilting. Learn from you all the time.

  7. Carolanne says:

    I wonder if the maker ever noticed the upside down squares. Sometimes my really glaring mistakes become invisible to me until a much later date – while I am doing the binding! Lovely quilt.

    • timquilts says:

      I think that might be the case here….I know how easy it is to put in a block upside down…and If you don’t have a big area to spread it out and look at it in total it is even easier

  8. dljolin says:

    Such wonderful inspiration and motivation for me first thing this cold, dark, gray, rainy/freezing rain morning………. It’s good to start my day with your posts.
    LOVE how you showed each step you took to get things ‘right’. Also in all my years of handquilting had never thought to use my hoop. How smart is that! Love that idea. Thanks for sharing……
    Hope you are staying warm and have a wonderful day quilting. I’m going to get mine now and start………

  9. Victoria says:

    I just LOVE your blog!! Thanks for sharing your thought process on what you decide to do with these lucky quilt tops! Loved the photos and narrative of how you squared up the borders. Tim, I can just imagine how the quilt makers would love you as much as your adoring fans do for lovingly finishing what they started. What a great tip on the use of a hoop to mark for the Baptist fan too!!! Signed: “Super Tim Fan”

  10. Carolyn Black says:

    That Teddy is SO your heartbeat! I know he’s a big help.

  11. NikkiTheVet says:

    Tim, I love your blog and looking at all of your beautiful work. Like the previous posters, I was so glad to read that you left those three blocks as they were. It made me imagine that maybe the original creator did it intentionally and that the three blocks represented something in his/her life that had turned it upside-down. Three people close to them that died, maybe? Three life regrets or mistakes? Three bad relationships/divorces?!!
    I know it was probably just a simple mistake, but I enjoyed thinking about what it could’ve meant. Thanks for sharing!

    • timquilts says:

      Thanks!….I also enjoy wondering about the people who made the antique tops that I work on… is always a mystery but fun to think about….and I like to think they would be happy that the quilt gets finished!

  12. […] finally got it done!!  The vintage Fruit Basket quilt ( Click here for the post about beginning the quilting) is quilted , bound, and […]


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