Monday, November 14, 2016

Vintage Scrap Lone Star

It all started in 2013, when Quiltdiva Julie sent me a box of crazy pieced vintage blocks.

There were 24 in all, and they came from a quilt top she'd bought on Ebay.
The seller said it came from Ohio.

I had saved this photo on my computer screen for some years before that.  
I don't remember the source, but it became my inspiration.

I sewed the blocks together and cut out the diamond shapes for the star.  
There were just enough leftover for the border.  

Then I bought some embroidery floss.

I learned a few stitches, and embroidered all the seams.

Eventually, it was ready for a background.
I picked this spring green solid, because it was the only thing that seemed to work.
I wasn't excited about the color, but thought I'd get over it.
Well, I didn't.  I just didn't like all that green!

I decided to remove it and find another background.
Several hours of stitch-picking later, I was ready for auditions.
I tried practically everything I had on the shelf.  
Here are just a few.

Too light

Too dark

Too brown

Too bright

Too busy

Too gray

A few dear friends suffered with me and my auditions for WEEKS!

Then I went to the Houston Quilt Festival and found what I was looking for!
It's one of the new woven plaids from Kaffe Fassett.
The top is about 87" square, plenty big for a queen size bed.
I finished it last week.

THEN, just yesterday, I went to the Farmer's Market, like I do every Sunday.
The woman farmer I always buy from gave me this!

She said her great-grandmother had made it from old family clothes.
What a treasure!  I tried to talk her out of giving it away.
But she said she had no room for it.  
So I gladly brought it home.  

While Julie's was sewn in blocks and not yet embroidered,
this one was sewn all on one sheet with embroidery.

Now I have TWO vintage scrap tops to quilt and to love!

News just in:  

Bill Volckening found where the original inspiration quilt came from.
The quilt was shown in the European Patchwork show in France in 2012.  

Katell Renon's quilt group in France was also inspired by the original.
They made a beauty!


Anonymous said...

What a beauty! Love the way how the blocks with those beautiful fabrics made a new appearance!The embroidery stitches are just perfect like gathering all the fabrics together!Looking forward to seeing what are you going to do with the second one!Have a nice day! Anneli

Terry said...

How wonderful. Waiting for the "right fabric "for you paid dividens in the end. Great blend of old and news. I think the quilting fairy was watching and knew you were the perfect person to treasure a vintage quilt top.

Ailsa (Cape Pincushion) said...

Oh wow. You have a lot of patience! I love how your scrap star quilt turned out!

Annemieke said...

So much fun to see old blocks come alive in a new quilt! It is really a treasure you were able to take the crazy top/quilt home.
And thanks for showing all the try-out photos.

Annemieke said...

So much fun to see old blocks come alive in a new quilt! It is really a treasure you were able to take the crazy top/quilt home.
And thanks for showing all the try-out photos.

Chris said...

Wow, I didn't realize how large the scrap blocks were until the end of your post! The Kaffe plaid works great - did you have the blocks with you when you bought the fabric? Do you always go to Houston? If my daughter still lives in Texas next year I might try to attend. I have attended the Paducah show several times-so much inspiration! Anyway love both of your quilt tops, and I imagine your friend knew she was giving her family quilt to a good home. Have fun finishing them!

Cinzia said...

You are the quilt Savior! Beautiful story!

Lamasure said...

Good choice...Stunning gorgeous !
You give me inspiration....

m. said...

Thanks for sharing the process! That makes the quilt extra special! I love both the tops. (A side note... I was blessed to meet Quiltdiva Julie last week with her Build a Barn display in Memphis. She, too, brings 'value added' to her quilts through sharing the process.)

Judith said...

I did like the too dark version too! Lucky you to be trusted with an antique quilt!!

Judy Martin said...

Oh wow is right! What a beautiful quilt top you have made and thank you for showing the audition process you put it through.
It is so nice to receive gifts of hand made textiles from friends and acquaintances - Gift cloths connect us. Art connects us.

Thread connects in more ways than we realize. xo

CecileD said...

When I saw it on IG this morning my first reaction was....WOW !
Congrats for this quilt ! It's awesome !

Unknown said...

What a nice story! Your star made of a friend's gift is wonderful and you finally found THE right background! I remember in 2013, not being innerly convinced by this aqua green you chose. Sometimes you just have to wait for the right fabric to come. Your final choice gives so much light and dynamism to the star! Now you trust blue to be a happy color too ;-)
It is now one of the best quilts in your galaxy of works.

Quiltdivajulie said...

What WONDERFUL results for that vintage eBay quilt top. I am SO happy you transformed the blocks into something SO amazing! And waiting for the right background fabric - I completely understand every thread of that process.

patricia belyea said...

LeeAnn—Making a back, taking it off, auditioning tons more. That's passion for fulfilling your artistic vision. The blue woven plaid mades the quilt top sing! P.

Helen said...

I remember when you were cutting out those big diamond shapes and wondered what would become of them. That blue check is a heavenly choice!

Summer said...

Pretty ♥ happy Tuesday ♥

Ruth said...

This is incredibly special, and I LOVE the final choice for background. Perfection. Thank you so much for sharing all the others, and your whole process!

Kleine Vingers said...

Love the star. Greetings

Linda @ kokaquilts said...

Such a wonderful'lone star' quilt! I do love that new Kaffe plaid, it's the perfect choice! I orderd some just for me the other day! Off now to check out the links, thanx!

Rachaeldaisy said...

I so enjoyed reading the story of this wonderful quilt. Julie gave those blocks to the right person and you chose the perfect inspiration quilt. I felt your frustration at finding the perfect back ground fabric, but it was worth the wait. The top you have been given is wonderful too, once again it's in the right hands.

betty prins said...

Nice nice your Lonestar!! And the search for the back ground fabric...always difficult, so good you change it, now it is really a eye catcher!!

Kyle said...

What a cool way to use those blocks. The lone star is beautiful. That was a lot of unsewing to do to change the background, but your new choice is incredible and oh, so bold.

the girlfriend gap said...

Old and new living happily ever after : ) . Recently I decided that I love that combination! And I am trying to use something old or repurposed in every quilt I make. Because something about that just makes my heart happy. Thanks for sharing your treasures. I am always inspired. Janita

Mystic Quilter said...

What a wonderful star from the vintage blocks. I love this with the KF new fabric as background.
No I do wish we had Farmer's Markets her in NZ - I should be there every week!

Brenda said...

Wow! thanks for sharing your process and for showing us that it takes time to find the right fabrics.

Ada Plouvier-Kopitopoulou said...

I love vintage fabrics. The star looks great! And what a nice gift!

Kristine said...

Splendid crazy star ! Kristine

Marit said...

So interesting to follow the auditioning of the background fabrics, it really shows how much that changes the whole character of the quilt. The chosen one is both surprising and lovely! A lot of work with the embroidery, and maybe also a great chance to study the vintage fabrics. All your work and patience in the process is really paying off. Beautiful...

; )

Barb said...

Great quilt! I love the red embroidery.
Your final selection of background looks great.
What a generous gift from the farmers markets ladies. Wow.
They found the right home for that.

Monica said...

LOL, I had the same problem with that colour of spring green. It seems perfectly good until you try it with almost any other fabric, and then it looks ghastly. I don't know what I'll do will all mine! Practice FMQ, maybe.

It seems karmically balanced to pair your vintage fabrics with a brand new one. Great finish! Have fun with the next. :D

Kaja said...

Perfect background fabric - your persistence paid off. I would never have thought of using those original blocks like this but I love the end result. How lucky you are, too, to be given another vintage top.

Ann said...

What a delight. Love all your embroidery. I would have been tempted to stop at the one you called "too dark" but your persistence served you well. Perfect background.
Isn't it interesting how many old styles/quilts/colors/etc. are new again? There may be nothing new under the sun but you've created a unique beauty while honoring the past. I especially appreciate the time you took to show your vintage inspiration points rather than pretend you dreamed this up out of thin air. What a help this is to other quilters as they look for their own muses.

MulticoloredPieces said...

Hi, Nifty. It's always a pleasure to stop by and see what you're up to. Wonderful old fabrics that you've brought back to life. And I especially like your "spare parts" quilt. The red just makes it sing. wishing you a wonder holiday season! best, nadia