VINTAGE CHURN DASH QUILT

Vintage Churn Dash Quilt
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Sometimes a quilt top appeals to me and I just have to bring it home. That is what happened with this vintage Churn Dash quilt when I saw it at an antique store in Oaktown, IN back in 2010. Plus it fit my budget at $30.

The blocks are 8″ square and are made of cheerful 30’s and 40’s prints. A solid orange sashing is between the blocks. Here is an easy pattern to make your own.

I kept it where it could be seen for several months while I decided about adding an outside border. I was not concerned about the size, however, I personally like an outside border to frame the quilt.

After several months, I decided to leave the quilt top “as is” and had it machine quilted by RLM in January 2011. The design is a loopy design that is close and does a good job of covering the entire top.

Loopy quilting design shown on front and back of quilt.
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We chose a poly/cotton blend batting, and the backing is a cotton multi colored design on light background.

The finished size is 64″ x 76″.

This vintage churn dash quilt makes me happy every time I look at it. The fabrics and cheery colors remind me of something my beloved Grandma would have made from feed sacks.

Cheerful colors make this quilt top.
Shoo fly quilt

Reminder to all quilters:

Please don’t feel like you have to make every quilt you have. It can be fun to purchase completed blocks, a completed top, or a finished quilt. The important thing is to surround yourself with quilts you like because they make you happy.

Purchasing parts of a quilt, or an entire top can also save some much needed time. Quilting should make you happy, not stressed.

HOW TO ENGLISH PAPER PIECE

I have no idea who showed me how to English paper piece hexagons and diamonds. But the years have slid by and I really enjoy this technique. It is portable, easy, and looks great when completed.

What research I have done on this technique is that it started in England (well that certainly is obvious) in the 1700’s. The technique showed up in America in the early 1800’s. I have not done enough research that may or may not show this technique in other countries.

Gather supplies:

Paper (I use scrap paper that is on hand, such as discarded mail)

Fabric

Pattern in shape and size desired

Thread

Scissors

Easy directions:

I found this slide show about English paper piecing to be very easy to follow and the photos much better than anything I had in my own personal collection for directions.

If you prefer YouTube, this is a nice presentation.

This previous post has a PDF pattern for the hexagon I use in most of my quilts using this technique.

How To English Paper Piece
Flowers & Tumblers Quilt

This is not a hard technique, but it is time consuming.

Here are my steps and tips FOR HOW TO DO ENGLISH PAPER PIECING:

  • Get my supplies together.
  • Make the template from something sturdy (I cut up the plastic lids from ice cream containers for this). Draw around it on the paper for the amount of hexagons (or diamonds) you want to do. Personally, I start with 2 or 3 sheets of paper and cut more as needed. I find I can use the same paper shapes 3 times before they are no longer stiff. Cut carefully and accurately.
Papers used for English paper pieced hexagons
  • I do not cut out hexagon (or diamond) shapes from fabric. I do cut squares or rectangles big enough to cover the shape plus be folded over to the back. My reasoning is that I can trim off the extra fabric from the back of each shape – I cannot make extra if I don’t allow enough room. I learned the hard way that not centering already cut fabric means there is not enough fabric on back to prevent fraying or just flat out not enough fabric.
  • Take one paper shape and one fabric piece. Pin the paper to the wrong side of the fabric. Baste all around the shape. You will want the fabric to fit snug and the edges sharp. Do not bend the paper shape or have the fabric sag away from the paper.
  • Starting with the center and one petal, whip stitch along one side. Add another petal and sew the two seams. Do this all the way around until you have one complete “flower”.

One completed English paper pieced flower.

AND FINALLY:

  • Do not remove the paper yet. When you remove the paper will depend on what you do with the sewn shapes. The basted edge holds the raw edges firmly so they can be sewn together to the next row of hexagons. Or sewn down to a fabric block by applique.
  • When you decide to remove the paper, simply take out the basting stitches and pull out the paper. As long as it is still stiff and the edges untorn, it can be reused in another “petal”.
More English paper pieced flowers.

Other places for information:

I found several other links about English Paper Piecing. We all learn differently, so these might be helpful too.

The History of English Paper Piecing | MQG Community (themodernquiltguild.com)

My Summer English Paper Piecing project | Diary of a Quilter – a quilt blog

Discover Vintage America | Covering Quilts (discoverypub.com)

Dear Readers,

Have fun exploring the world of English paper piecing. You may be one of those quilters who becomes “addicted” to this technique. Even if you are not one who becomes “addicted”, at least you will have learned how to do English Paper Piecing. Happy Quilting.

PLEASE NOTE: 
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

QUILTING TRENDS FOR 2021

Hello 2021 clip art
Source: Bing clip art

As time allowed over the past week, I did some research on quilting trends for 2021. I will probably go my own way for my quilting journey, but maybe I will discover some fabric or design that inspires me.

And this blogs’ readers may find something inspiring as well. I hope quilting in 2021 is much more about fun for all quilters the world over. For many, 2020 was about illness, politics, and isolation.

And the trends are….

According to Gathered (a British publication), the list of quilting trends includes: fabric panels, raw edge applique, curves, eco quilting, the color blue, and hand quilting.

On this blog, I have several posts about quilts that include some of 2021 quilting trends. Maybe I am ahead of my time! Here is fabric panel wall hanging for Christmas, and another that is nautical and blue.

Quilting Trends for 2021 - using fabric panel in a quilt.
Christmas Cardinals

Bernina Sewing Center of Lincoln, Nebraska’s list has three items: the color Horizon blue, simple piecing, and asymmetrical.

Any regular reader knows that I thrive on quick, easy piecing of any size quilts. Here is one of my favorites, and it gets many compliments when I show it off to other quilters. I am not the only quilter who likes blue and yellow together.

Easy 4 patch quilt
Sunny Tuscany 4 Patch

When it comes to home decorating, I like a mix of items both old and new. Wall art is great, but I hate to dust around knick-knacks. I like wooden floors (and if they squeak when walked across that just adds to the feel). Colored walls are my preference because white walls look dingy since we heat with wood. I want organization. And I really want a place for textiles.

I checked on decorating trends for 2021, and found that the look is less clutter, more natural lighting, and mixing old and new items. Wow, what I like is finally popular! Now, if only the featured slideshow had quilts hanging on the walls! But that means opportunity awaits.

I know some of you are missing quilting classes. This quilt shop is doing zoom classes. While I am not familiar with this shop, some of the readers may like to explore this option.

Quilters – Make a quilt that makes you happy

Check out the decorating and quilting trends for 2021. Find an idea that inspires you and go for it. Have fun. Open the door to inspiration, and make a happy quilt for this year.

Live, Laugh, Love....Quilt !
Source: Quiltville.blogspot.com

PLEASE NOTE: 
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

CHRISTMAS IN PARIS 1985

Christmas in Paris 1985

We lived in Germany for five years during the 1980’s. The short version of this story is that I lost the coin flip and we spent Christmas in Paris 1985 (instead of Rome).

It was certainly exciting to be in Paris, and we saw all the tourist places during those five days (Arc de Triomphe, Norte Dame, the Louvre Museum, Versailles, Eiffel Tower, etc.).

Not to mention walking around downtown and getting lost. Or that my husband got food poisoning. It was a memorable once-in-a-lifetime experience (he is rolling his eyes right now).

Never did I think of making a quilt as a keepsake for the trip – I had lots and lots of photos that are still fun to look at.

However, I was in a fabric store recently, the Rockin Bobbin https://www.rockinbobbinquiltshop.com/ and found some really pretty Paris themed fabrics.

Clip art of Eiffel Tower

The light bulb went off – a quilt to commemorate the Christmas in Paris 1985 trip would be fun so I picked up several different pieces of the Paris fabric.

After washing and ironing the fabric, I cut it up without thinking to take photos before cutting. However, here a close up of a piece that is used as an alternate block for the quilt.

Close up of black and white Paris themed fabric

Making the wall hanging:

I went through my Christmas prints and chose some that were glittery (like Paris, right). The goal was a simple wall hanging so I cut 8″ squares of the Paris fabric, and a few glittery Christmas fabrics for a total of 20 squares. I sewed these squares together 4 squares x 5 rows.

A gray stone looking fabric was chosen for between the blocks and the glittery music outer border.

Christmas in Paris 1985 pieced together.
The completed top – Christmas in Paris 1985

The top was easily pieced in a day and is ready to go for machine quilting. The finished size is 41″ x 48″.

The backing is a Paris toile and I will hand cross stitch a pretty tag to put on the back once it is quilted.

I am normally the person taking photos because I am not fond of having my own picture taken. However, here are two photos of a much younger me in Paris during December 20 – 25, 1985.

Photo of Eiffel Tower in Paris, France.
Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France

Life’s events can certainly be commemorated with a quilt, either simple or complex. What life event would you like to commemorate with a quilt?

Christmas in Paris clip art

PLEASE NOTE: 
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

CHINESE LANTERN QUILT

Chinese Lanterns Quilt

In all my years of quilting, I had never seen a quilt pattern like this Chinese Lantern Quilt.  This beauty was probably pieced during the 1930’s. It is so unique, and I had the privilege of hand quilting it in early 1996.

The background fabric is a bright orange with cotton candy pink circles appliqued between the lanterns. Diamonds of 1930’s prints make up the lanterns and are appliqued on the orange background too. The first border is a narrow black strip, with the outside border more of the bright orange fabric.

Close up of quilted top.

The hand quilting is a circle inside the pink fabric circles. In the orange I quilted a stipple design. Some of the diamonds in each lantern are quilted too. I put 203 yards of hand quilting into this cheerful and unique quilt.

The backing is plain unbleached muslin. I wish that I had taken a photo of the quilt from the back as well, but at the time it just did not get done.

Finished size is queen.

When I quilted this Chinese Lantern Quilt, it was owned by PB of Fiddletown, CA.

Are you wondering why I am showing off a quilt from 1996? Truthfully, it is a gloomy, drizzly day here in central Indiana. I completed my reports for work and took some time to look back through my scrapbooks of quilts and found this cheerful beauty.

It is an unusual pattern – I have to wonder if it was designed by the maker.

Fun clip art of Chinese Lanterns.
Source: Bing clip art

Other ideas for Chinese Lantern quilts –

Here is a link to a pieced pattern that is named Chinese Lanterns.

I saw a version of a Chinese Lantern quilt at a quilt show in Terre Haute, IN. It is just one of many beautiful quilt photos from a post earlier this year.

Please note that all photos and written content in this post are mine.