The older the better…

For the last few weeks, I have been showing some of my Mom’s quilts. She LOVED the art, making her first quilt at age eleven!! She took a hiatus for a bunch of years but returned to the art in the 1970’s as part of the Bicentennial quilting revolution.

This quilt was one of the first ones that she ever made. If I remember, she said that this was her second quilt and it is one of my favorites…..

It is made from 30’s fabrics….well…because it was made in the 30’s!!!!

I love the cheeriness of the blocks…..

As I looked at these two blocks side by side, I realized that the flowers are in different orientations. If you look back at the quilt, you can see that the block on the right is a mistake….the only one in the quilt. Or maybe, it was a “design decision”….right??

I am ashamed to say that her blanket stitch in her early teens was better than mine is now!!!

She used straight line quilting in the blocks and fun flower designs in the alternating blocks…..

And, this quilt is H…E…A…V…Y!!!

The cotton came from the field across from her house and, if you feel around on it, you can find bits of chaff that didn’t get carded out!!!

I don’t tend to display these older quilts too much in my home, but I am thinking that I need to find a good place for this one in my Spring decorating!!!

Do you have a favorite family “heirloom” quilt??

Lots of Handwork….

You should know by now that, if I am posting about a LOT of handwork, it is someone else’s quilt!!

I have mentioned before that my Mom LOVED doing things with her hands. She seldom sat at night without a needle in her hand……….and stuck in the padded armrest….but that is another story!!

One of her favorite crafts was embroidery and she KNEW how to do it.

I thought she was crazy when she started this quilt…..

There are 50 blocks with each state and its bird and flower……

Look at all of these French Knots…..

And of course, her beloved Texas…..

Now the AMAZING thing here is that not only did she make this quilt, but she also went on to make TWO more of them!!!

I love that I have this quilt and when I look at it, I can see her bent over her needle and smiling!!

Yellow Rose of Texas

My Mother was two things……




One of her favorite songs was “The Yellow Rose of Texas”…..especially when Ernest Tubb was singing it…..

She would sing the first few lines over and over and over!!!

So, I guess that it was no surprise that she chose to make a quilt called “The Yellow Rose of Texas”……

It contained so many of her loves…..Texas….Roses…..Needle-turn Applique…..Embroidery and Hand-Quilting!!!

In her patient way, she created 25 rose blocks…..EXACTLY THE SAME…..

….each complete with a small embroidered bee…..

And to set it off, she added the scalloped border….what a great touch.

She quilted around each of the roses and then added the same design in the alternating blocks…..

The result is a bright and cheery quilt and I break out into song every time I see it.

Thanks, Mom!!!

It’s an Odd-fellow

My Mom had one quilt that she always called her “Odd-fellow” quilt. I never knew the reason for the name but assumed it was because of the large number of fabrics involved. Officially, I think that an Odd-fellow quilt should not have any fabrics repeated in the quilt and that wasn’t the case here.

But….it still was a fun quilt……

The elongated hexagons made the perfect pattern for this quilt which Mom hand pieced and quilted…probably in the early 1940’s.

The quilt was well used and definitely is showing signs of the love…..

The batting is actual cotton that Mom picked from the field across from her house. They cleaned it and carded it and then laid it out on the backing fabric waiting for quilting!! It sure reminds me of just how spoiled I am!!

The binding was also special. As you can see in the previous photo, the top and bottom were straight bound, but on the sides Mom added a little touch…..

The full quilt is quilt colorful…..

….and in this larger photo, you can see the hand- quilted Baptist-Fans. I love to look at this particular quilt and think about the many nights that it was used to keep a family member warm and, it helps me to remember the quilting heritage that I come from!!!

The Beautiful Boston Commons Quilt

As we get close to Christmas, our thoughts often turn to things of beauty and comfort and, naturally, my thoughts turn to quilts!!!

The quilt that I am sharing today is another one made by my Mom (Lois Swinson). I have shared a number of her quilts before and am happy to say that this one is a true favorite. It was the last of the “hope chest” quilts that she made for me and I have fond memories of her working on it.

Boston Commons

The quilt design is called “Boston Commons” and, like most of the other hope-chest quilts, is made from fabrics in her scrap basket.

The design itself is fairly simple.. made entirely of squares. I like the fact that Mom added interest by using solid fabrics on all of the outside edges. It gives a bit of continuity to the piecing…..

If you look closely at the fabrics, you will see some that were included in last week’s post of the Balloon Girl quilt!!

But, the best thing about this quilt is the AMAZING hand quilting. Mom loved to quilt…..

…and spent many happy hours sitting at her frame!!!

She meticulously quilted feathers and 1 inch grids into all of the white areas of the quilt….

My favorite memory of this quilt was when she stood the frame up on end to store it during a quilting break. There was a large window behind it and the colors shone like stained-glass… was mesmerizing!!!

I always enjoyed when this quilt was on my bed and am sad that we have moved on to bigger mattresses and can’t use this full-size quilt to snuggle under at night.

I guess that I need to find a way to decorate with it….that shouldn’t be too hard to do!!!