City Scape

What can you do with a strange panel like this?
Likely only 1/2 panel at that....
See; it's a very cute city, in back to back arcs. Hmmm....
No selvedge, so I'm not sure what it's supposed to be.
Have you seen this one before?
I'm making Divided By 3 by Kari Nichols for a Springtime Runner Swap at club.
I'm worried this city nightscape is more of a summertime runner.
But I can't resist playing with this big print on these giant open blocks:)

I used my phone camera to audition border placements. Do you do that too?

Binding is too wide, so the border ended up thinner than the little setting squares.
[But ThankGoodness for 24 hr. WalMart when you just
have to have black binding in a hurry, know what I mean?]
Next time I work in big print, I'll remember to cut borders extra wide to finish at ideal size.
I added the pink and blue corner sets, just to break up the continuous curves of black and white.


This was fun! I'm going to look for more big prints and go again.

Commemorative Quilting 2015

 
RHQ Table of Commemorative Quilting Opportunities has been updated!
Check out the list for ideas to remember both fun and somber times with quilting projects:
Updated list features 2015 & 2016 anniversaries, and a
NEW table of Centennial Dates for Women's Suffrage.
 
Also, please PLEASE  join conversations of Commemorative Quilting on the
Facebook Page Commemorative Quilting,
and help spread news of memorial quilting by using #commemorativequilting. 
Thank you!!!
 
For more explanation of what Commemorative Quilting means here, please see the Page Tab above
 
Are you working on a Commemorative project? Know of a date we missed?
Please Comment - Your news and ideas are most welcome!

The Lucky Quilt, Conclusion

[The Lucky Quilt, Part I]

Mrs. Crabtree looked at the seven muffin tins lined up on her kitchen island. The chocolate cupcakes smelled heavenly, if she did say so herself, Mrs. Crabtree was an excellent baker. Regardless, on this Monday, she was not enamored with the chore of finishing seven dozen cupcakes for the PTA bake sale that afternoon. Eighty-four cupcakes, she couldn’t resist calculating, to fill with cream, frost and decorate. Trimming all these tiny cakes would take the entire morning, she had better get started. But the last tin had just come from the oven and still needed to cool some before meeting their filling and frosting. Enough time to tidy around the downstairs. And hadn't she promised Rose that yard sale quilt for her bedroom? She could wash it while the baby slept, and surprise Rose by having her bed made with it when she returned from school.

She found the quilt on the living room couch near a medieval castle of blocks, complete with parapets, drawbridge and Rapunzel towers. To Mrs. Crabtree, the old quilt looked like a veritable tea garden in a peaceful green meadow. Cup of tea would be lovely, she mused to herself, hoping there would be time for tea before frosting and loading cupcakes into the car for their final destination at the bake sale. As she picked up the quilt, Mrs. Crabtree was suddenly very tired. Too tired for cleaning, or laundry, or...yawn...frosting. She would rest right here on this sofa, with the morning sun flooding the family room windows, and this lovely cozy quilt. She had to rest. Now. Isn't it nice to have a lap quilt long enough to cover your toes when you just need a rest? was the last thing Mrs. Crabtree remembered before peaceful rest clouded her thoughts with tea gardens and meadows, and she was fast asleep.

Mr. Crabtree sneezed mightily, recovered himself somewhat, and then added an entire box of tissues to his briefcase. His head felt like a bowling ball underwater. He had given up all attempts at normal breathing, and was concentrating only on normal walking. He found his wife having a cup of tea at the kitchen table, with what appeared to Mr. Crabtree as an ocean of beautifully frosted cupcakes covering the kitchen counters.

"Ah, I see you are ready for the school, ah, the school.....thing." Mr. Crabtree's attempt at interest in his wife's affairs faltered under the haze of his cold.

Mrs. Crabtree smiled understandingly. "Apparently," she said in a bemused tone.

He couldn't tell if she was pleased or making a joke, or if he cared which. A pun he had missed, possibly? "Don't joke with me, Dear,” he said, “I’m not up to funnies just now.”

"No joke, Brian," she replied. "The last thing I remember is taking a little lie down on the sofa. When I awoke, the cupcakes are finished, and here is a pot of tea as well, all made perfectly." She waved her arms expansively, showcasing the accomplishments like a Price Is Right model, amazed at her own kitchen.

"You must be coming down with this infernal cold, too," said Mr. Crabtree, "Maybe Mother stopped by and helped out," he offered, the most real possibility of the moment being the ache in his head.

Mrs. Crabtree, never one to overlook gift horses, let explanations pass. "Have some tea, Dear? And a cupcake?"

"I'm -achoo- sorry dear -achoo- no time. I must get to the office. The Abramson account, you know, presentations today," and he closed his sentence with another stifled sneeze.

"Then here you go," Mrs. Crabtree said, wrapping the yard sale quilt around her husband's shoulders. "This will keep you warm," she said comfortingly before kissing him good by and helping Mr. Crabtree, briefcase and quilt out the kitchen door.
-----------------------------------
Standing on the train platform in the spring sunshine, wrapped in a quilt, Mr. Crabtree was beginning to feel better. People stared. And they kept staring at him, on the train, and in the elevator too. But the quilt was so cozy, and the bright green tartan backing reminded him of a story about swashbuckling highlanders and their brave deeds, which although he couldn’t quite recall, he was sure he had loved when he was younger. By the time he entered his downtown office building, he felt equally brave to face the Partners, the Abramson clients, and the whole 76th floor. He wore his quilt proudly all the way to the board room, where he let it adorn the back of his chair as he opened his brief case, smiling to himself as he passed out his reports.

“Forgot to make your bed today, Crabtree?” quipped a senior partner.

“Haven’t seen this fashion at Brooks Brothers,” joined a law clerk good naturedly.

“Achoo,” said Mr. Abramson.

Mr. Crabtree handed him the tissue box from his brief case.

“I -sniff-, thank you. I appreciate a man prepared for every eventuality,” said Mr. Abramson.

----------------------------------

“Well it has to be here somewhere,” complained Grandma Crabtree, yet again turning over cushions, this time searching the family room furniture for the Lucky quilt. Then pausing in her exasperation, “I can’t go to Bingo -on St. Patrick’s Day no less!- without that Lucky Quilt.”

“Rose Dear,” asked Mrs. Crabtree of her daughter, “Did you ever get hold of that lovely quilt to redecorate your room?”

Rose’s reply was interrupted by the doorbell. As she was closest to the front door, Rose went to answer, as Mr. Crabtree entered the kitchen.

“Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all!” proclaimed Mr. Crabtree, happy to be feeling better at last. He stopped his wife midway to the basement door with a big hug and a kiss.

“You are the best wife ever! Hey, where is that lucky quilt? We should have it out when the Abramsons come to dinner tonight.”

“Mom,” called Rose from the living room. “It’s Mrs. O’Leary. She needs her quilt back.”

“Lucky?” said the Baby, and started to cry, loudly.

“That’s what I’m talking about,” said the older Mrs. Crabtree, returning from her search under the sofa and going to comfort the Baby.

“You see, my family relies on the luck of that quilt,” explained Mrs. O’Leary, following Rose into the kitchen.

“Mom, Mom, guess what?” Zac and his tall classmates, now in Varsity uniforms, burst into the kitchen, all talking at once, “coach wants us to bring that quilt for scrimmage tonight!”

“Once my great-grandmother Kate lost that quilt, in 1871 it was, oh the tragedy, you can’t imagine…” continued Mrs. O’Leary, wringing her apron in her hands.

-----------------------------------

A more beautiful spring afternoon was never had in all of Chicago, Darren was positive. Nor had there ever been a girl as beautiful and as sweet as Colleen, he was equally sure. Darren watched transfixed as the pleasantest of breezes curled Colleen’s dark hair around her shoulders before moving on to buoy a pair of ducks on the pond in the center of the park. Lazy sunshine mixed with the smell of warm grass and the fried chicken in Colleen’s picnic basket. . Her blue eyes twinkling, Colleen smiled patiently until the first lady bug of spring tickled his shirt collar and returned Darren from his reverie.

“Please, Colleen, sit here,” said Darren, spreading the shamrock green Irish Chain quilt atop a hill under a budding dogwood.

***The End***

For Tommy, a genuine Chicago Fireman

and a great neighbor

The Lucky Quilt

It was a fine Saturday morning when Mrs. Crabtree arrived at her Chicago home. Assisted by her daughter, nine year old Rose, mother and daughter began unloading the weekly shopping, along with an assortment of yard sale plunder. Mrs. Crabtree was proud of her "weathered eye for yard sailing," as Mr. Crabtree had once remarked, and she was always keen to supplement her family's resources with a good find. To Mrs. Crabtree's no nonsense mind, yard sales were a duty of household industry.

"Where should I put this?" asked Rose, displaying a small green blanket of shamrock and tea cup fabrics.

"That's a lovely quilt, Rose," answered her mother, "Where did you get it?"

"But you bought it, Mother," said Rose, perplexed that her mother didn't remember. "At Mrs. O'Leary's yard sale."

Rose held the new treasure higher for her mother to examine. Tiny roses adorned the most graceful of teacups between patches of shamrocks, their squares chained together to create a great patchwork lattice. But to Mrs. Crabtree’s expert eye for bargain hunting, it was hard to tell the age of the quilt. Hand quilted certainly, but in an inconsistent fashion. Some blocks were woven with intricate knots, some were simpler “in-the-ditch” outlines, and a few blocks were merely crossed with crooked Xs. Although the workmanship was certainly old, the quilt seemed a perfect new condition.

"Please leave it by the basement door," said Mrs. Crabtree, perplexed. "We'll take it down to the laundry."

Reluctantly, Rose entered the house and did as she was bid, although she could hardly bring herself to put the old quilt down. It was so...cheerful. "Then may I please have it for my room, Mother? It is just the right size for my bed." Rose asked, returning to open the kitchen door for her mother.

"Of course, if you like," stammered Mrs. Crabtree, surprised yet again this morning, this time at her daughter's sudden formality. Mother, May I? Since when! Mrs. Crabtree decided that the new fourth grade teacher must have started a unit on etiquette, and made a mental note to share the obvious results with her on Monday when delivering cupcakes for the PTA bake sale. But for now she needed to get these groceries put by.

Recognizing the sounds of her mother's arrival in the kitchen, the Crabtree Baby toddled off from her blocks to provide a baby's welcome, quietly leaving older brother Darren alone with his homework (which sounded remarkably like video games). "Lucky," said the Baby when she spied the shamrock quilt. Lucky indeed, as it was just the right size for Baby to pull over her shoulder. She brought the quilt to meet her mother at the refrigerator, giving her a hug around the knees. Mrs. Crabtree patted her cheek and handed her a fresh bottle of juice.

Realizing he was alone in the family room, Darren tripped over a jumble of blocks with his oversized fifteen-year-old feet on his way to join the family in the kitchen. "Mom, can I go the park today?" he asked while taking two bags of groceries from Mrs. Crabtree.

"The Park?" asked Mrs. Crabtree, "Before lunch? You're asking about basketball before food?" she felt his forehead for fever.

But it was Rose who replied, "Darren wants to see Colleen," she said, drawing out each syllable into a sing-song. "Col-lee-een lives by the park," Rose teased as her brother chased her around the kitchen island.

"Lucky," said the Baby, holding up her new treasure, to no one in particular.

Mr. Crabtree entered the kitchen from his adjoining study, with two pairs of glasses atop his head and file folders in each hand. "Lunch ready, Dear?" he asked Mrs. Crabtree. "I'll need to go back to the office this afternoon. The Abramson report, I forgot to bring the numbers home..."

"Dad, can I have a ride to the park when you go?" interrupted Darren, abandoning his chase of Rose, who giggled her escape all the way to her room.

It wasn’t like Mr. Crabtree to be so forgetful. He really doesn't look well, considered his wife, feeling her husband's forehead for fever. "Why don't you take a break, Dear," she replied, "Have some aspirin and a lie down. I'll bring you lunch in bed as soon as it's ready, alright?"

Just then Zac, the eldest Crabtree sibling, arrived with three members of his JV basketball team.

"Mrs. C.!”
"Howdy, Ma'am,"
"How are you, Mrs. C.? Mr. C.?"

The older boys greeted Zac's family with a renewed whirlwind of activity, somehow managing to put away all the groceries while simultaneously retrieving sodas and snacks from the pantry.

Mrs. Crabtree smiled good naturedly at the gang assembled in her kitchen. "You- upstairs to bed," she directed her husband. "And you all- outside while I make some lunch." she sent the young men off amidst cheers o f "Thanks Mrs. C., you're the best," on their way to the basketball hoop on the carport.

"Have you seen my lucky dauber?" Mrs. Crabtree's mother-in-law, also a Mrs. Crabtree, called from the front door entry way while digging in her oversized bag of bingo tickets, decks of cards, and sundry lucky charms.

"Won't you stay for lunch today?" called the younger Mrs. Crabtree from the kitchen, now in full apron and wooden spoon regalia.

"No thank you, Dear," answered Grandmother Crabtree absently while turning over cushions on the living room furniture, "I'll have lunch with the girls on our way to Bingo. I only stopped by to see if I dropped my lucky dauber here. Must be somewhere..."

The Baby stopped in her block construction of flying buttresses. "Lucky," she said, bringing the new green quilt to her grandmother.

"Shamrocks, oh, how lovely. You are right, Sweetie," said Grandma, "this looks very lucky." Remarkably clever Baby, thought her grandmother proudly. "May Grandma take your lovely quilt to Bingo? Maybe it will make up for losing my lucky dauber."

The Baby beamed her approval, then took her bottle and toddled away to find her mother again. Mrs. Crabtree the Elder put the green quilt in her bag and headed out to bingo.

"Wait, Grandma, will you give me a ride to the park?" Called Darren, leaving the carport basketball game with the older boys and following his grandmother to her car.

---------------------

"It's her fourth win tonight!" said Edna. "How does she do it?" asked Maggie. The ladies at bingo commiserated across a church hall table as Mrs. Crabtree shouted, "Bingo! Again!" snatching one of her nine cards from atop the green quilt she had spread on the table, and waving it over her head like a flag and jumping up and down like a schoolgirl.

"That is some lucky quilt you have, Marjorie," said her friend Edna, envying the golden stitches shining between shamrock patches.

"Irish Chain," remarked old Mrs. Nussbaum from the next table, without turning around.

"What's that dear?" asked Maggie, purely from politeness, as no one ever knew what Mrs. Nussbaum was talking about.

"Irish Chain. It's the luckiest quilt," said Mrs. Nussbaum, "powerful lucky."

Must have eyes in the back of her head, thought Marjorie Crabtree, to see this old quilt without even turning around. Well, however she does it, Mrs. Nussbaum is right. This "Irish Chain" is truly lucky!
a vintage Irish Chain

-------------------------

Zac and his teammates huddled on the bench. Sidelined at the big game, they likely wouldn't be called on to play this Saturday night, so they contented themselves with the case of Gatorade which Zac's Grandmother had supplied through her bingo winnings. The old lady had arrived as they were leaving Zac's house, and called for them to wait and, "Take my lucky quilt to the game!" Well, they were certainly lucky the old green quilt was big enough to cover the whole bench. At least it would keep them from getting splinters.

-----------------------

"And then, you wouldn't believe!" On Sunday morning, Zac was still delivering play-by-play coverage of his big game. "We each were called in to play! Jim made three lay-ups in a row! And then I... "

"I saw you bro, I was there," interrupted Darren through his pancakes, "you ran full court and,” Darren began copying the announcers calls of the night before, “It‘s the Crabtree boy, Rookie, out of nowhere, he steals, it’s a fast break, down the lane, he scores!” the boys finished together with high-fives across the breakfast table.

Mrs. Crabtree at the kitchen sink began to protest the boys’ raucous behavior, but she was forestalled by her mother-in-law's surprising proclamation, "I told you that quilt was lucky!" The elder Mrs. Crabtree fairly shouted in her enthusiasm from the living room recliner where she sat with yarn and the remote control.

"That's nuts, Grandma,” said Darren. “How can a quilt be lucky?"

"All I know," said Zac, "is we were sure glad to have it at the game, Grandma."

Darren looked over at the Baby, carrying the "lucky" quilt by, in search of her blocks, no doubt. The cheerful green squares of the quilt framed Baby's red curls and pink smile, making here appear even more angelic.

"Your nuts too," Darren returned to addressing his older brother. "That tiny baby quilt couldn't possibly cover your whole team's bench."

Preoccupied with cupcake recipes, Mrs. Crabtree brought a dish of nuts to the table. Zac shrugged off Darren's query in favor of the new treats.

"Lucky," said the Baby, sitting down with her blocks to construct a suspension bridge for the family room.

"You got that right," said Grandmother from over her knitting.



***Continued Here***

Crazy in Velvet

Recently, when I went to Quilting Bee at the Museum.....
 
I've only seen a few genuine Victorian Crazy Quilts. How many have you ever seen?

painted velvet patch
The ones I've seen always include some taffeta.  This one, however, is completely in velvet.
 
Who do you needs be to get this many velvet scraps? Think this quilter was an 1880s dressmaker?
Or maybe she lived next door to one?

wait - maybe that stripe patch is silk?
Don't these clever leaf appliques just set your design senses all tingly?

Here are some unfinished crazy blocks from the same quilter.
 
Even more amazing than all this antique velvet....

my thimble looks giant compared to this tiny embroidery
is the incredible tiny stitchery here!


As you can see, these blocks are more traditional, with silk, velvet, even some lace.
 
Nice of her to include these election ribbons to help date and locate this quilt.
 
BULLION TRIM!!!??

 
But back to the all velvet crazy quilt. Why after finishing this incredible stitchery, would she leave this quilt without binding? Seems that finishing would be easy, compared to all else she had completed.
Maybe she just ran out of time to finish.
Or do you suppose she really hated making bindings?
 

How about you? Are you a binding lover, or a binding hater?
 
Darlene at Gilbert Museum finished this, with a perfectly simple black velvet border. It's a fundraising piece for the Museum now, if you'd like to take it home.
my favorite patch
I think the original quilter would be very proud of how it all turned out, don't you?
Anyhow, I'm glad to have crossed paths with her work.
lovely old fabrics
Here's one for the road. Also unfinished by this same Crazy Quilter.

Seen @MQG

Some of my faves from the last meeting I attended:)
Dresden Plate, one traditional and one modern.
How fun is this!!!
Shiloh signs all her work. Nice:)
Signature piece.
Somebody very sweet has a new pillow for her room:)
Genevieve says, doodle feathers every day, pen and ink, and you'll be able to quilt like this.
Corner sets quilting are also stars! Wow - Genius
star-in-a-star detail
Nice quilty bag too!
Shop model - because houses are cool.

WorkFlowy in Quiltland

Everyone is home in bed where they belong, at last. Grandpa has returned from another hospital stay. Alex is back from her school trip. Later today we will move furniture to make room for Grandpa's new walker. I love furniture shopping, and antiques, and a cozy home, so....you can imagine, we have way too much furniture. But for right now, I'm very glad to be having coffee and blogging with you. Seems every New Year starts with a little step backwards. Maybe now we can get back to business as usual.

Have you heard me rave about WorkFlowy? For this Totally Tech Tuesday, I'd like to share my favorite organizing app: WorkFlowy lets you keep all your do and plan lists in one place,
in outline format! That's why it works for helping you get stuff done- because your bottomless lists
  • can be seen in their true hierarchical structure
  • collapse/expand, so that you can intimately focus on relevant sections as needed
  • WorkFlowy is searchable! You can even use hashtags:)
  • you can cross things off when completed without erasing them
But wait, of course there is more -
  • WorkFlowy can be shared, for collaboration on one document
  • You can work seamless across desktops (you get the same views and features no matter where you're working, wish all apps could say that)
  • HTML Links work inside WorkFlowy
But how does that help your quilting? Here is what I'll be using WorkFlowy for this year:
  • Thread Catalog (so I know what I have when I find a great sale;)
  • Reading List (searchable by author and publisher)
  • Blog Calendar
  • UFOs (status, needed supplies, deadlines)
  • Shopping Lists
  • Etsy Inventory
  • Ideas!
  • Things to worry about....later.
Best of all, WorkFlowy is beautifully simple. So for pictures, I'll refer you to this WorkFlowy Blog post: WorkFlowy is for Thinking, begging with Conquer the World.
I like how those they think, don't you?

Carpe Quiltum!
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