Archive for the ‘Feedsack’ Category

Butterfly Quilt

April 3, 2009

A vintage-era Butterfly Applique Quilt pattern from Laura Wheeler Designs was stitched up and made into a colorful lap-sized quilt top. I started this last spring, wrote about the Renegade Butterflies, and now the 12-block top is finished.

I used vintage-era fabric samples, feedsack scraps, and reproduction cottons to make the butterflies. A bright and whimsical watercan print borders this one.


Since it’s still drizzling outside, I will quilt this today. I’m planning to add an aqua binding.

Scrappy Doll Quilt

February 22, 2009

This scrappy Jacob’s Ladder doll quilt was finished up the other day. Each block is 4-inches square. The sashing and posts are 3/4-inch.

Finished, it measures 18″ x 22″.


All fabrics except for the solid pale-peach background fabric are vintage scraps. I was surprised that I had enough of the border print to actually make a border.

The backing is part of a feedsack. I appreciate working with a new or barely-used feedsack since the cotton is thick and durable.


Meander quilted on my longarm with ribbons quilted in the border, this doll quilt was loaded and finished in less than an hour. I haven’t made a doll quilt in many years so this was fun.

An Infusion Of Springtime Scraps

February 20, 2009

Through the cold weather and frozen ground, our early Spring bulbs have begun to stir. Crocus, Iris, Narcissis, Snowdrops…the list of early Spring bulbs is long because I am a gardener as well as a quilter.

The tiny green shoots of life are beginning to emerge now, heralding the start of Springtime with our gardens’ symphony of color. Snowdrops are up but holding tight to their blooms. In a week or two they will open and nod towards the ground as if to say Wait until you see what is next.


So signs of Spring have begun here, and when Spring arrives, our gardens will be filled with blossom-bright colors. Oh, I can barely wait!

Springtime patchwork pillows were stitched last week amidst my continued yearnings for Spring. Each of the pillows I made are 14″ or 16″ with overlapping back panels to insert pillow forms. All were stitched with scraps and leftover strips.

Isn’t the novelty print in the center square cute? “To market, to market, to buy a fat pig….”


The pillow shown below has a remainder bit of feedsack that was trimmed off of a vintage quilt my grandmother made about 70 years ago. (The second fabric from the center with the off-white background and purple Morning Glories.) I discovered a One Patch quilt inside a tied coverlet and decided to uncover and repair it. (Read Untying The Past for more.) Since a few trimmings were necessary to square the quilt, I saved those trimmings. You never know when you need a scrap of this or a bit of that. Now the Morning Glory trimmings are in this pillow:


Making these pillows, I added some of my coveted vintage-era scraps. Some feedsack fabrics, some vintage swatches, and some dressmaker scraps were stitched into these two:

I’ve been using this infusion of cheerful Springtime scraps to cure my Spring Fever!

Iron On Tuesday

February 17, 2009

Or so it is written….Remembering the vintage Day Of The Week embroideries for household duties.

Those stylish DOW embroideries were made, no doubt, as a reminder for the housewives of yesteryear to stay on schedule. Woe to the independent housewife who might have a different schedule (or mindset)!

It is Tuesday. And so I iron.

But I don’t iron linens or clothing.

I iron vintage scraps.


These scraps will be used in a small quilt.


Those 3 scraps I can clearly remember — from my grandmother’s scrap collection.

I choose these.


To make little Jacob’s Ladder patchwork blocks like this one.


A little doll quilt with little four-inch patchwork blocks.

Maybe I will sew a dozen little blocks.

Maybe more….


Renegede Butterflies

February 21, 2008

GreenhouseI have been suffering with the typical dead of winter color deprivation syndrome. Predictably, each February, I begin to crave color, so I start to desperately seek springtime.

In my greenhouse, color abounds! Orchids, overwintered annuals, and other flowers are in bloom. Seeds are now seedlings and they are being nurtured. Robins have been on the property for almost a month and everything is signalling that spring is almost here. But it snowed yesterday and our outdoor temperature is in the teens. With cold weather like this, it’s amazing that the snowdrops, crocus, and pansies are blooming. I know that Spring is not far away, but I am impatient. So this week, I’m on a mission to create a little springtime in my studio!  

Feedsacks, some vintage era fabric swatch samples, and reproduction fabrics have been chosen to carry out my mission.

I am inspired by many of the vintage era quilts with lovely pastels. Those light, airy colors remind me of Spring. Vintage, it is!

With a pile of fabrics from my vintage stash and a purple print feedsack in perfect, uncut condition, I had gathered my springtime vintage era fabric palette.  Next, I wondered how I might use the fabrics to create a bit of springtime.

LauraWheelerPatternsFollowing with the vintage mood, I looked through my collection of Laura Wheeler patterns. I saw butterflies! Vintage butterflies sounded charming, so I pulled the Laura Wheeler Butterfly Design 515 from the collection. It was a perfect springtime block of simple butterflies!

I photocopied the original and modified both the pattern and layout for my butterfly applique quilt. What I think I have now are renegede butterflies…

The original pattern suggested that it be made “entirely of applique blocks in two materials. The same materials may be used throughout, or different materials may be used in each block.” I thought that a quilt composed of the same identical fabrics would be much too boring, plus I had a stack of springtime fabrics to use. I opted to create a scrappy-looking vintage reproduction with this pattern.

Directions for the applique block suggest, “Stitch down the patches with outline stitch. Trace and embroider feelers, the lines in butterfly in outline stitch. Embroider body in satin stitch. Use six strand cotton (using three threads in the needle) for embroidery.”

I didn’t do that either… My butterfly patches are stitched down with the buttonhole stitch. After all, the buttonhole stitch is SO vintage….

Laura Wheeler Butterfly Pattern 515

Contrary to the Laura Wheeler pattern directions, I plan to add appliqued butterfly bodies rather than 1/2″ wide satin stitches which would be much too wide or practical.

Before stitching, I made a traced copy of the block so that I had a placement guide for the applique. For each butterfly, there are 4 separate wing sections, plus the butterfly body. The original pattern is stitched with blocks set diagonally and without any sashing. My butterfly blocks will be made with a straight set using some type of sashing.

So not following the original directions or pattern or layout, I’m making a dozen renegede butterflies for a dozen small 8-inch” blocks. These renegede butterflies will make a small quilt. A fun quilt. A quilt of little renegede butterflies trying to fly through the dead of winter into Spring.


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