Tuesday, October 25, 2016


Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  While reading Facebook last week, I noticed Jo Morton had posted a photo of Sadie's quilt from her book Jo's Little Favorites.  Since Sadie's quilt was one of my favorite quilts from her book and since I have a dry sink and since Jo Morton is one of my favorite fabric/quilt designers, I decided to follow Jo's lead and display Sadie's quilt in my own dry sink.  Thank you for the inspiration!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

American Eagle

Veterans' Day 2016 is 21 short days away--November 11.  Another great day to bring out the red, white and blue.  I have another patriotic addition, an American Eagle chair pad.  While reading blogs one day, I saw this American Eagle with surrounding stars and thought it seemed a natural fit to compliment my patriotic quilts.  My wool stash had a good assortment of red, white and blues.  The eagle motif came from the Primitive Quilts magazine and I modified the stars until they fit.  If anyone is counting, there are thirteen stars for the thirteen original colonies.  Forever the history buff.

The bald eagle (I prefer the American eagle) was chosen as the emblem of the United States of America because of its long life, great strength and majestic looks.  Benjamin Franklin did not want the bald eagle to be the chosen bird.  Here is what our founding forefather wrote about the bald eagle:

I wish that the bald eagle had not been chosen as the representative of our country, he is a bird of bad moral character, he does not get his living honestly, you may have seen him perched on some dead tree, where, too lazy to fish for himself, he watches the labor of the fishing-hawk, and when that diligent bird has at length taken a fish, and is bearing it to its nest for the support of his mate and young ones, the bald eagle pursues him and takes it from him. . .  Besides he is a rank coward; the little kingbird, not bigger than a sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the district.  He is therefore by no means a proper emblem for the brave and honest of America.  For a truth, the turkey is in comparison a much more respectable bird, and withal a true original native of America, a bird of courage, and would not hesitate to attack a grenadier of the British guards, who should presume to invade his farmyard wearing his red coat.

Franklin did not hold back about his feelings about the bald eagle being chosen.  The turkey, well he earned his place in American history for another holiday celebrated in November--Thanksgiving.

As much as I love and respect the wisdom of Benjamin Franklin, I am glad the eagle became the emblem for the United States--the eagle is a majestic bird.  One other reason for loving the eagle:  his amazing eyesight.  It is estimated the eagle's eyesight is 4 to 8 times stronger than that of the average human.  Some say an eagle can see a rabbit up to two miles away.  No more glasses, no more magnifying lights--a plus for all the needlework projects.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Fall Where Art Thou?

Crown of Thorns
Frivol #7 by Primitive Gatherings
Songbird Gatherings Fabric

Slowly, ever so slowly I am making progress on the Crown of Thorns quilt.  The official date for fall is September 22 (that was almost a month ago).  With temps still in the high 80's it does not feel like fall!  There is no color, it is hotter than Hades, it is very dry and brown and ugly!  With all the beautiful colors, cooler temps, soups, sweaters and decorations fall is one of my favorite seasons.  I am blaming my lack of progress on my projects on the hot weather!

Whew!  I made a huge error on the Crown of Thorns quilt and am so glad I purchased extra fabric--I am sure going to need it to compensate for my mistake.

Grant House1865 Sampler
Chessie and Me
30 count Confederate Gray linen
NPI Silks

Chessie and Me released this design at the Nashville Needlework Market in March 2016.  It is a smallish sampler and will go great with my patriotic quilts.  At the top of the sampler there is this great eagle and the words Preserve the Union.  I really like the way Linda incorporated the date into the grass.

Stacy Nash Primitives
Country Sampler--Schoolgirl Sampler Spring Sewing Bag

I have fallen behind, way behind on the club projects.  While Stacy calls this a spring sewing bag, I have changed the linen colors and fibers to match some homespun and rick rack I had in my stash.

My finishing fabric is more fall like than spring like and I changed some of the fibers to better match the finishing fabric.

The weather man is forecasting a significant drop in temps for the weekend.  Bring it on!  Maybe the cooler temps is the motivation I need to get myself in gear and get some of these projects finished.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Crown of Thorns

Primitive Gatherings Frivol #7
Songbird Gatherings Fabric
Crown of Thorns

My name is Betty and I have a fabric collection addiction problem.  Isn't admitting you have a problem one of the steps in the twelve step program?  I love nice fabric, the feel, the colors and the designs all sing to my heart and call my name.

What's a Frivol?  It is a collectible tin containing 42 squares of 7" x 7" fabric, a classic pattern which finishes to 15" x 35" and a small surprise from Moda.  There were several of the Frivol's which caught my eye and the one I chose to make was Frivol #7.  The pattern is a very traditional pattern, Crown of Thorns.  I do love me some red fabric and the Songbird Gatherings fabric sure fills that bill.

After finishing the North and South quilt, my sewing mojo took a mini break.  Between the combination of taking much longer to finish the North and South quilt than I had anticipated and a very late fall with temps still in the high 80's, I needed a quilting break.  Christmas is just a few short months away (it is hard to focus on Christmas when the temps are still in the 80's) and the red fabrics in the Frivol #7, would sure make a nice Christmas quilt.  Who knows, by starting this small quilt in October, it might actually be finished in time for Christmas or Valentine's.

Lisa Bonegan, the designer of Frivol #7 included HST piecing papers in the kit.  The addition of the piecing papers speeds up the process and makes for some nice accurate HST's.  The directions complete with diagrams are easy to follow and the time to sew the blocks goes quickly.  Measuring and trimming the HST's makes them even more accurate.  When I was in Paducah for Quilt Week, one of my shopping stops was at Hancock's and they had the Songbird collection of fabric in stock.  I was able to purchase setting fabric, backing fabric and binding fabric.

So far I have limited myself to just one Frivol; however my fabric addiction may be stronger than my will power and I may cave and purchase another one or two.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Upper Cumberland Quilt Show Part III

White Plains
Putnam County, Tennessee

White Plains was a new venue for the Upper Cumberland Quilt Show.  The antebellum house was built  by Stephen Burton in 1848. The house was a stop over for the stagecoach traveling the Walton Road between Knoxville and Nashville.  All three of Tennessee's presidents, Andrew Jackson, James K. Polk and Andrew Johnson were guests at the home.

This woven coverlet was being warmed in front of the fireplace.

This quilt was made in the early 1860's.  The quilt was used on the beds for the guests traveling by stagecoach on the Walton Road between Knoxville and Nashville.

The friends of White Plains had done a beautiful job staging the home with quilts, antiques and flowers.  They even served punch and tea cookies from the dining room.

The friends of White Plains are currently working to restore the home:  a worth while endeavor.  A beautiful piece of Tennessee history worth saving.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Upper Cumberland Quilt Show Part II

The Needham Family had agreed to share their family quilts for the quilt show.  I did not count the exact number but estimate there were more than thirty quilts on exhibit.  The quilts had been made by predominately one member of the family.  

Tiny pieces sewn together with perfect points.

Cathedral Windows


English Paper Piecing

What a legacy!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Upper Cumberland Quilt Show Part I

This quilt was made by one of the ladies at the Algood Senior Citizen Center.  All the Sunbonnet Sue's were different and purple. The appliqué on the outside border added a nice touch.

This quilt had such an interesting story.  According to its owner, Joe Cameron he won the quilt at the U C Q F in 2014, he wanted to win a shotgun.  Nancy, his wife only had tickets for this quilt.  Joe says his wife is happy with the beautiful quilt, Joe says if he can sell the quilt he can get his shotgun.

The maker of this quilt called the design diamond ring--it was beautifully pieced and quilted.

Burgoyne Surrounded--I have been collecting fabrics to make this quilt

There was a nice display of patriotic quilts:  The addition of the elephant and donkey under Miss Liberty was a nice touch

Unusual color selection--the quilting was perfection.

There were dozens of quilts and I took many photos will share more in next post.