Thursday, July 22, 2010

Just Look at What I Found Today!

Today I ran away for a day. I left a note and promised to be home by dinner time. I had lots of well loved company the last few weeks and all that goes with that, such as house cleaning, painting where necessary, meal and event planning. I should have been at home today washing the bed linens, towels and anything else I could find. However, I spent the morning walking two miles at the mall with Danny, returning a really cute blouse that was after all too young for me, and picking up books saved for me at the local library. Then I spent the rest of the day in some of my favorite antique stores. I bought two quilts today and am sharing my favorite with you now. I made a rather low bid and the owner split the difference with me so it was a win, win for both of us. For those who don't already know, I offer the name, New York Beauty for this quilt. I suspect that if you are here reading, you already know that.

Above you can see the right side and upper edge. So if you look at the right side of the picture you can see a chunk missing near the bottom edge of the corner block. Not unusual for a quilt this old.

This picture shows two patches of red apparently used to cover two holes. A quick examination of the fabric feels like there are two oval holes under the patches. There are identical ovals of white on the back. I can only guess that the holes were trimmed out to remove a stain? In any case I may try to find a better match of fabric and piece red and white together to better hide the repairs.

On the left edge of this photograph is what I believe to be the the bottom edge of the quilt. If you take a look at the first picture again you will see that there are two sides of the quilt with this border. Quilts from this time period were often used on beds that were place against the wall so no need for a four side border.

This view gives you a small sense of the quilting. I have to say that this is a really beautifully made quilt. The piecing is really crisp and the quilting dense and lovely. The edges are pretty worn, but over all the rest of the quilt is in good condition. There are some stains, but I am reluctant to try to wash them away. I suspect that I will hang it above the landing upstairs. If that works out, I will post a picture so you can once again see how beautiful it is. The following quilts with the exception of the last one are quilts in the International Quilt study Center's collection. I hope you enjoy them.

This would probably be my favorite. It employs stunning pieced sashing and my own favorite, applique.

I love the red, white and green color choices in this one. It is one of the few I have seen in this soft color palette.

This quilt is on the cover of the book "American Quilts in the Modern Age". This quilter had no problem with color.

This quilt is also red, white and green, however the artist also popped in some yellow and voila, this quilt sings!
I end, appropriately I think, with this wonderful red, white and blue version. When Americans are feeling patriotic, or nostalgic, it seems we come back to this.
I hope you don't have the need to run away. This was only my second time in forty-nine years so I am feeling okay with it. However, if you do, I hope it works for you as well as it worked for me today. Two quilts in one day. Zowie!!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

I do sometimes cook

Last fall when I went to Philadelphia with my daughter, I certainly enjoyed the sights in the historic area. In walking distance, I spent my days absorbing our history while Kelly attended her writing conference. However, we did have almost a whole day at the end of the week before heading for the airport and home.

This was the day we had breakfast/lunch at Max Brenners Chocolate cafe. Yum! In addition we were in an area where a lot of high end boutiques and stores. What did we enjoy the most apart from lunch/ breakfast? William Sonoma! Sorry, we do not have one here. I cannot understand why but it is the sorry truth of our condition. That is where we found Kitchen Aids 90th anniversary limited edition, candy apple red mixer with a glass bowl! I really wanted that mixer. I think Kelly wanted it too. We both own a Kitchen Aid mixer, mine more than 35 years old, hers more than twenty. Three hundred and forty dollars. Both of our mixers are in great condition so no real excuse to buy one. Having said all that, I cannot express how thrilled I was to finally find the glass bowl in Branson at the The Tanger Mall! I am so excited to be able to see all of what is going on when I am mixing pastries, icings, etc.

Now if any of this sounds strange I will give a brief explanation. The women in my family play board games, do jig saw puzzles, collect cookie cutters and unusual baking pans and dishes, sew, love, love, love office supplies, and possess a gene for collecting vintage china and glassware. It could be worse I suppose. What if we had an affinity for trolls?

Thursday, July 1, 2010


I have been thinking of friends a lot lately. As some of you know, I lost a dear friend a short time ago. It was a great loss to everyone who loved her. This resulted in my thinking about friends and I decided to share a little with you today. We moved from CA to the mid-west in 2003. My husband was two years into retirement so free to go. I am a quilter and was still working at teaching applique and hand quilting and can do this work anywhere, so I was also free to go. The incentive, our daughter and a beautiful five year old granddaughter. One day my husband said " I would rather see our girls every week and visit friends once a year", instead of the other way around. So we began the journey that led us here. There are no regrets but am reminded of loss when I come across something made for me by a friend. I am then reminded of a quote I read a long time ago and do not remember the source. A man leaves the place where he lives and "a woman leaves her friends." So, in the arrangement above I have made a circle. The cross stitch is my work and contains images I am fond of, a bird, a bowl of fruit and a home. Moving down in a clockwise motion, there is a tiny white oak basket made for me by my friend Karen B. It is absolutely perfect in every detail. The small quilt below was made for me in 1990 by another friend, Bobbi A. She moved first back to the east coast. Something about the Loma Prieta earthquake. I was born in Ca so I was somewhat immune but understand her feelings. The little quilt is approximately eight by ten inches. Picture if you can a 12 block quilt with two inner borders and a one inch outside border, hand pieced and quilted. Lucky me, but it gets better. All of the pieced blocks are made from fabric inherited from her great grandmother's quilting scraps. I feel better just looking at this evidence of dear friends.