This week I drove over to the little town of Ontario, Oregon, to visit Andrews Seed Company. This lovely garden store (in business since 1917!) has a wonderful selection of seeds and garden items, with a fall sale currently happening, but (as much as I love garden stores!) the main attraction for me was the display of customers’ quilts that they have hanging from the ceiling throughout the store. These will be on display ’til the end of October, and I really enjoyed taking a long look!
One of the most amazing quilts there was “The Weekly Leaf,” a quilt made by Linda McLaughlin of Studio B in Weiser, Idaho. It consists of 52 blocks that each feature either a whole leaf or a close-up, all handpainted and worked in the most wonderful handstitching, one per week for a year. It has to be seen in real life to be truly appreciated, but try going to Linda’s blog and clicking on the individual leaf pictures to see the detail on these wonderful blocks. (You may have to wait a long time for the page to load, since it features photos of all 52 blocks.)
Weekly Leaf by Linda McLaughlin
You can also go to this blog to read a little more about the techniques involved. I’d love to try something like this someday!
I love vintage 30’s quilt patterns! This beauty, called “Nine-patch Nosegay,” has a copyright date of 1937. It was published by the Mountain Mist batting company, which for many years included quilt patterns on the wrappers of their batting packages. The pattern is currently available from Fabricshack.com for $3.50.
I found a photo (above) of what the quilt looks like when it is made up in the color choices called for in the original directions. Gorgeous! And the grey background, geometric feel, and use of solids makes it seem surprisingly modern.
My stash has quite a few odds and ends from Bonnie & Camille’s ‘Vintage Modern’ and ‘Ruby’ lines . . . I really love them, but had no specific project in mind. I think borrowing the basic applique block from this pattern might be a fun way to use some of those. Besides, since I’ve never really tried applique until recently, I like the idea that I’d only have to make twelve of the blocks. That sounds totally doable!
Not sure what I’ll end up doing for the alternating blocks, though. I’m going for a cheerful, informal look, and I think the pattern given for the alternating blocks would overwhelm my applique blocks. I’d really like to incorporate more of the fabrics from my stash, but I’m afraid even a simple nine-patch or four-patch for those alternating blocks might overbalance the applique. I may end up going with the red-and-white pindot fabric, as shown.
(The image below is taken from quiltindex.org, and shows the basic template pieces, layout, and suggestions for color choices and quilting. Click on it to enlarge for better viewing, if you wish.)