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In fact, I think the main reason I have any interest in quilting is due to the chance to be audacious (is that the right word?) in my use of color.

Once I started a wall hanging for elderly friends just because I was fascinated by all the different green colors in their main bathroom. Aqua-greens, mint greens, olive and avocado greens, 50s light greens, forest greens — it was amazing.

I started a search for green fabrics that incorporated both yellow greens and bluish greens. There weren’t too many in the mid nineties! I did a mockup on a foam core board for them because I was so excited about the concept.

Well, that was a mistake. It was clear that either I was NOT communicating my vision or they did NOT appreciate the product.

In any case, I never finished it and I think it’s probably still leaning against the wall behind a stack of fabrics in my sewing room, 12 years later.


Closing with a view of a favorite child in green!

Halloween 2010


This quilt was made by my husband’s maternal grandmother before he was born. It was never used. We are in the midst of gifting some of the family items to our children and I’ve taken some photos in preparation. These were taken inside with my old camera and with me perched on a chair, holding the camera above the quilt, which explains why they are not terribly clear.

The hexagons on this quilt are about 1.5″ across. On my screen (calibrated with the Huey/Pantone color calibrator), the photos seem to be a fairly accurate pink.

pink grandmothers flower garden 1949

The fabrics in this quilt appear to be mostly 30s and 40s fabrics. There may be a few older fabrics; I will check more closely if this is of interest to you. In any case the fabrics that were chosen appear to be good quality, finely woven cottons. (This is not a given in quilts this age, as many fabrics from the first 2 or 3 decades of the last century were very loosely woven and of poor quality.) The pink color is a traditional one for this pattern.

The quilt is hand pieced and hand quilted and I believe it has a cotton batting. The backing and binding is a looser woven natural muslin fabric, somewhat discolored in places. I could try hand washing it, but probably won’t.

I love mystery quilts, but I’m terrible at following through on finishing them once the mystery is solved and I know how it will look. I finished this one while on vacation last summer. For several years I thought I might extend this 8-sided center to a bed-sized quilt, but decided I’d rather have it finished than possibly on a bed some day in the future.

The front:

mystery quilt

I found this mystery on the web sometime in the last 8 or 9 years. If you recognize the pattern or author of the mystery, please leave a comment so I can give that person credit. (February 2010: I found it! Quilting Passion Mystery Quilts Scroll down. It’s Mystery Quilt #1.) I chose scraps from several of the batiks that we used for tablecloths at my daughter’s wedding in 2000. Here’s the back, which gives you an allover view of the ‘focus’ fabric.

mystery quilt back

A close-up where you can see my rough free-form quilting as I was learning to use my new-to-me Bernina 1090 sewing machine:

mystery focus

The photos were taken outside with my old Sony Mavica FD-75. The quilt is about 40 inches across.

My sister cut these square denim blocks a few years ago, in 2003, I think. We did a rag quilt style pillow for our father (who loves walleye fishing in Ontario).

pillow back

As you can see the pillow includes some olive green denim and a ‘fisherman’ type block salvaged from an old sweatshirt that once belonged to one of his grandsons.

pillow front

We were on a real denim kick! One day soon I’ll show you the denim ‘picnic’ quilt that inspired all this…


My sister cut all these circles from old jeans. We started with a small plate to cut around with the rotary cutter. Skinned knuckles are a hazard of this method. We switched to drawing around the template and cutting with a scissors. It’s a more portable project that can be done while watching a soccer practice or game…

denim quilt

After washing:

denim quilt washed

Sometimes in the winter my dh likes to hop in his semi truck and haul stuff around the country for hire. Several years ago his truck of choice was a red Mack tricked out to haul flat bed and/or wide or heavy loads.

Bedding for the sleeper cab is always a challenge as the custom mattresses vary according to the size of the truck. My solution has been to buy a dark colored cotton California King sized sheet set and recut it to fit the bed. That usually works for the sheets, but then the blankets are a different problem. No standard blanket is long enough for the bed and if they are long enough, they are generally too wide.

I planned this quilt with a few parameters in mind. It needed to be dark enough to not show dirt easily, quickly and easily pieced, related somehow to the truck colors (red with black interior), and something a man would be willing to sleep under. lol

I collected a variety red fabrics, from orange-red to blue-red, but with no white. Then I found an older Jinny Beyer grey and red border fabric that would work for sashing and borders. The piecing of the red fabrics was of random width Chinese coins, with the sets rearranged as I pieced them. The final decisions on the arrangement of the reds was done while lying in bed recovering from some broken bones. (This is starting to seem like a theme…) The borders were added with no fancy mitering…this is a utility quilt.

truck quilt

I have only this one photo after my mother-in-law and I had tied it and just taken it out of her floor frame, but before the edges were finished.

Getting better photos of those gorgeous fabrics is on my to-do list.

DH’s winter job has some side benefits for me; a couple winters ago he stopped and picked up a Bernina sewing machine that I had purchased on from a gal in Denver. ‘Free’ delivery!

I found these photos on my computer last week and thought I’d share them with you. I seem to be a magnet for people’s unwanted textiles.

A small stack of scissor cut tumbler blocks was given to me about 7 years ago. I had never pieced this block before, so I decided to give them a try.

Tumbler Doll Quilt

The fabrics weren’t my favorites and I suspected by the way they smelled when pressing that some of them were partly polyester, so I decided to do a quick tie job instead of quilting. Also I have a doll quilt from the early 1950s that was tied, so I figured this finish would fit this little quilt.

quilt ties

I found some pieces (from a different era, however) in my stash for the backing and binding.

Tumbler back

I think I probably sold this quilt, but I can’t really remember…


May 2018
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In honor of my late father-in-law