Thursday, November 16, 2017

Cumberland Valley Quilters Association Quilt Show

This past Saturday, November 11, 2017 was the biennial Cumberland Valley Quilters Association Show.  The show was held at the St. Philip Catholic Center on Second Avenue in Franklin.

We arrived late to the quilt show and only had one hour to look at the quilts and shop with vendors.  Translation:  I have no names of the quilts or the quilt makers.  Since I have so very little information about the quilts or the quilt makers, I will fill in the blanks with the history of Franklin.

This was the raffel quilt.  Pretty nice.  I didn't win.

The City of Franklin was founded in 1799 (the same year as M. completed her Ackworth sampler).  The city was named after Benjamin Franklin.  For most of its first 180 years, Franklin was a tranquil small county seat.  In the years prior to the Civil War, Franklin (Williamson County) was one of the wealthiest counties in Tennessee.  Franklin was the center of plantation economy and there are several plantation mansions which survived.

The Civil War devastated the economy.  The Battle of Franklin was one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War with more than 8,000 casualties and turning every home and building in town into a hospital.  It took 120 years for the economy to reach pre-war levels.  Today.  Franklin is one of the wealthiest cities in one of the wealthiest counties in the United States.

Author, Robert Hicks tells the story of Carrie McGavock in his novel, The Widow of the South.  Carnton Plantation where Carrie and her family lived is the setting of the novel and the site of the Battle of Franklin.  Carnton is a short distance from downtown Franklin.  During the battle, Carrie's kitchen was turned into an operating room.  The floor still bears the stains of countless amputations.  When the battle ended, Carrie tended to the sick and dying and became the caretaker of the burial plots and cemetery located a short distance from her house.

Downtown Franklin is the best of both old and new.  There is the 1937 Franklin Theatre and Binks Outfitters on the same block.  Yarrow Acres, Rare Prints Gallery, and Walton's Antique and Estate Jewelry are some of my favorite shops on main.

There are two quilt shops in Franklin:  Quilting Squares and Stitchers Garden.  Both shops carry a wide assortment of Civil War fabrics and teach classes.

Just off Main Street on 4th Avenue South is Merridee's Breadbasket Bakery.  When we are in Franklin, we usually pop in for a fresh baked cinnamon roll or sticky bun.  Delicious!

The downside to Franklin is the traffic and parking.  I much preferred visiting Franklin when it was the quaint little sleepy town which had not been discovered and we could take a walk on the streets and enjoy the carefully preserved and restored homes.

My favorite part about Franklin--the Nashville Needlework Market is held each February/March at the Embassy Suites!  (Franklin is about 20 miles from Nashville)

My one and only purchase, the pattern for this house quilt.  I have always wanted to make a quilt with a house in it and this pattern looked like it was within my skill level.  Oh, that tiny little flag flying from the house is the Tennessee State Flag.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

M Quertier 1799 Debut

M Quertier 1799
Ackworth School
Scarlet Letter
35 count stash linen lambswool?
Gloriana Silk India ink

The chart for M. Quertier 1799 has been in my stitching stash a long time.  M. was one of the first sampler charts I purchased from the Scarlet Letter.  M. is a big girl--she is 11" x 18 1/4" on 35 count linen.  Each time I would browse through my stash, I would say to myself:  "I really like this sampler, I really need to stitch it, it's a Quaker.  What was my reluctance?  I started it once and quickly realized the piece of fabric I had selected was not big enough and also realized M. was a big girl, a big stitch and she would take some time.    

Passion flower motif

Little is known about M. Quertier, I have previously written about her,  The Quertiers were a Channel Island family and M. was admitted to Ackworth as a special case.  My naive heart wants to believe M. was admitted as a special case because she was special.  She was intelligent, had potential and had exceptional needle working skills.  That's my story for M. and I'm sticking to it.

Garland motif with M's initials

There are so many questions I would like to ask M. about her sampler.  How long did it take you to stitch the sampler?  Did you choose/design the motifs or were they chosen and designed y someone else?  Was this a year long teaching project at Ackworth?  The initials MQ are yours, but who do the initials JT, MN, SW and AT belong to?  Were they your friends, your classmates, your teachers, members of your family, neighbors?  Why did you stitch the date 1799 three times?  Were you apprehensive about the turn of the century?  There are three garland motifs with initials, was this one of your favorite motifs?

Carnation motif

M. stitcher her sampler in 1799, my reproduction was stitched in 2017--218 years later.  Will my sampler survive as long as M.'s?  Did M. stitch her sampler outside in natural sunlight, while I stitched mine with cheater glasses and a Dazor light with magnifier?  Did M. do reverse stitching?

Am happy M. is finished and she has a date with the framer.  The Beatrix Potter and the companion sampler to Beatrix Potter are in my stash, they are loudly calling to be stitched.  I need a break from large samplers and Emma Lerch who was pushed to the side while I was stitching on M has been patiently waiting for me to return and finish the stitching on her.  For the remainder of the 2017 I will be working on Emma and smaller pieces before I start another Quaker.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

M Quertier 1799 (the continued saga)

M. Quertier 1799
Ackworth School
Scarlet Letter
mystery stash linen (lambswool?) 36 count
Gloriana India ink
Estimated finished size 18 1/4" x 11"

Am still stitching on the Quaker Sampler.  Three of the inner motifs and the outline of some of the half medallions have been stitched since you last saw M. Quertier.  

Here is what she looked like before the addition of the three inner motifs and the outline of the half medallions in the outer border.  Gosh, does lighting ever factor into photography.  

Swan Medallion

I think the inner medallions are what attracted me to this sampler--they are all so different.

M. stitched the date into her sample three different times.  Wonder if M. and her school mates were as apprehensive about entering a new century as we were when we changed from 1999 to 2000?

One more inner motif and two outer motifs and fill in on six other motifs and M. will be off to the framers.  Do I see the light at the end of the tunnel a finish before years end?

Sunday, October 1, 2017

We Gather Together

Yesterday was the annual fall gathering of the Homespun Reunion Group at the home of Linda Stoltz.  Each fall, Linda graciously welcomes the Homespun group to her home.  Our group is very blessed because not only is Linda a gracious hostess, she is the designer behind Erica Michael's Designs and an outstanding needleworker.  The gathering always begins with hugs, ohhh's and ahhh's and the smell of delicious food.  There is an air of excitement with projects in the works and an exchange of ideas for projects which are in the beginning stages.  Unfortunately, I have photos of completed projects and do not have the name of the design and am unsure of the stitcher.  The above project was stitched by Jacqueline.  Hobby Lobby is one of our favorite shops and she had found a box and mounted the completed piece to the box.

Another one of Jacqueline's pieces.  A beautiful piece for Thanksgiving, fall or any time of the year.

Jane's Lesson One in Abecedarian from Summer Schoolhouse by With Thy Needle and Thread.  Jane had stitched her piece over two on 36 ct linen.

Linda stitched this Blackbird Design piece called Away We Ride.  The bowl is another find from Hobby Lobby.

This wool appliqué block is from the Blackberry Primitives design Castleton.  Linda embellished the blocks with beautiful buttons which had been passed to her from women in her family.

Linda has completed all of the blocks.  She has many commitments on her schedule and says the project will be set aside as she fulfills her commitments.  We are all anxiously awaiting to see this project set together-it is beautiful and has inspired us to dig into our wool bins and begin our own wool appliqué.

Anne's punch needle was inspired by an antique rug she had seen at the Heart of Country Antique Show.  Yes, it is punch needle and looks like a miniature hooked rug.

Lori found this pumpkin frame (I think at Hobby Lobby) and downloaded a freebie design from the Primitive Stitchers website.  Don't you just love the very fall color on the house and smoke coming from the chimney?

Another sweet autumn/fall piece.  I failed to get the name of the design or the stitcher.  Love the way it has been finished.

Delilah adding embellishments to a project bag (which will be gifted to one of her coworkers)

The photo does not even begin to show the true exquisite stitching in this piece.  The designer is Chessie and Me (do not know the name of the design).  The piece is mounted on a beautiful black walnut box which Linda's husband made especially for the piece.

I so overwhelmed with all the completed pieces, I failed to get both the name of the design, the designer and the stitcher.

A Notforgotten Farm design--another whoops on the stitcher.

Delilah's miniature quilt--great selection of colors with the blues and browns.

Judy's needle has been very busy stitching Plum Street samplers--I think she has stitched three.  Dutch Beauty is on her list of future projects.  

Needles were flying, floss was moving from skein into linen and stitchers were doing on line shopping.  The group meets again in November and there were be more beautiful projects for the share table.  Delicious meatballs, a homemade coconut pie and pumpkin dump cake helped us keep our energy level and someone had decorated cookies with a needle pulling thread and cross stitch.  Thank you Linda, for once again opening your home to the Homespun group.  Am already counting down the days until we meet again November 18. 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

The Divine Miss M (Part II)

M. Quertier 1799
Ackworth School
Scarlet Letter
Mystery Stash linen lambswool?
Gloriana India Ink

Miss M. has not been forgotten.  Life has forced her to take a back seat.  Am slowly, ever so slowly making progress.  I have moved to the second half of the chart and have stitched more than one half of the motifs.

Another one of my favorite motifs:  Miss M's cartouche.  Her beautiful initials with the date she stitched the sampler.  I haven't gotten there yet, but Miss M stitched the date on her sampler in three different places.  The year 1799 must have been important to her.

This motif used lots of fiber and required  a lot of time.

I was getting nervous about the size of the linen I had cut.  Whew!  There is going to be enough linen--one more motif and then the width of the sampler will be determined.

A few more football games, more documentaries, more stitching time for Miss M.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Made in the USA

Made in the USA
Laundry Basket Quilts

In an effort to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey, Laundry Basket Quilts is donating money from the sales of the Made in the USA quilt pattern and are collecting quilt blocks to be made into quilts.

When I saw the completed quilt, I thought it looked like a quilt within my skill level and my stash is loaded with red, white and blue and fabric.

No joke about the amount of red, white and blue fabric in my stash.  This fabric came from Whittles--it was half price and I thought it would make a good backing for a patriotic quilt.  

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Fall Preparations 2017

Blackbird Designs
Loose Leaf Pattern #27
Released in 2007
Autumn Song

The official beginning date for Fall 2017 is Friday, September 22.  For me, fall begins the day after Labor Day.  School started the day after Labor Day and for me that marked the end of summer vacation, the beginning of the school year, and a change in the daily activities.  The school year now starts in early August.  The daylight hours are growing shorter, there is a slight drop in the temperatures and daily routines are changing.  Labor Day, a three day weekend, a change to catch up, and catch my breath.

Pumpkin Blossom by Blackbird Designs
Crow Needle Minder by Kelmscott
Acorn floss keeper by Notforgotten Farm

Pumpkin Row

I saw this design in a magazine and thought it would make a great rug for fall and a way to use up my fall colored wool.  

This is my pansy basket I made a few weeks ago, a good walnut stain improved its looks.  Filled with candy corn and happy smiling pumpkin faces.  Makes me want to smile back.

The quilt on the sofa is changed.  This is a Jo Morton cheater quilter, the fabric is either Spice Market or Cinnamon and Spice--one of my favorite fabric lines.  One day, I let my mind wander and doodled the quilting patterns.

Cheater panel:  fabric made to look like it has been quilted.

Hmm, checking my memory bank these are designs from Plum Street, Notforgotten Farm, Chessie and Me and Carriage House.  

Fall colors are wool appliqué they just go together

Jenny Bean
Shakespeare's Peddler 2009

Yes, I change the samplers.  Love everything about this sampler:  the border, the weeping willow, mouse, fish bones and the saying is found on many samplers.

The beginning of fall and so many fun and wonderful events to look forward to:  quilt shows, corn mazes, warm soups, football.  Life is good.

Colorful sunflowers from thoughtful AppleJack