Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Flea Market Finds and Other Treasures

   A quilting friend, Bonnebell, suggested I might enjoy a flea market at Hawkeye Downs in Cedar Rapids, IA, held Sunday October 25th, 10 AM to 5 PM. I convinced Randy we must go after early church. After all, he may find oil cans to add to his collection! That strategy worked and off we went, picking up our son, Isaah, on the way. Thank you,  Bonnebell! It was fabulous. The best I've ever been to except for the one in Maine 4 years ago. Randy did find an oil can he didn't already have, so he was happy. He and Isaah admitted they had fun seeing all the unusual antiques there. I hit the jackpot! I came home with 3 purchases.

  I bought this c.1860-70 quilt made in Pennsylvania. The outer border is my favorite , poison green. Yummidy!

The backing is a wonderful brown and pink print.

A closeup of a block. These colors are typical of Pennsylvania quilts made in the mid to late 1800's.

 I found this little cutey, a 1950's embroidered doll quilt. The binding is a pale blue and nicely quilted.

I couldn't walk away from this oak set of card catalog files...the one added to the bottom of this stack. I'd never seen one with five drawers wide by one tall. It measures 33" wide x 6 3/4" tall x 17" deep. Now, what to store in those drawers. Hmm...

I didn't buy this at the flea market. I won it on an online auction and it arrived in the mail last Friday. It is a c. 1860's Economy Block doll quilt, made in Quincy, Massachusetts. It is so sweet and measures 15" by 15". There are a few brown prints that have deteriorated, but overall condition is pretty good.

Nice brown with red print backing and hand-quilted.

  Randy ran my route tonight so I could have the evening off. I made a big pot of chili and spent the evening in my studio. Besides taking these photos and posting, I made a label for a great niece's baby quilt and stitched it on. I'm ready to ship it out now. She's due to arrive on November 24th. Thanks for stopping by.

Keep Stitchin'!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Studio Tour Continued

  As promised, I'll share more pictures with upclose details of my studio. I went to see Mom at Sunnybrook Assisted Living last night since I missed going last week getting ready for my open house. I took peace offerings of fresh homemade chicken noodle soup and cookies & cupcakes left over from Saturday. It was too late when I got home to post. The Cubs play tonight so I'll be brief on words and heavy on pictures so I can watch the game. Go Cubs!

  First up, the red cupboard with Elizabeth's doll house furniture...

The first floor is set up for a living room at Christmas.

 The second floor is the bedroom. The quilt on the bed and the one on the quilt rack were made by my friend, Jane, and given to me as gifts. I could sleep cozy in this bedroom.

The third floor is the parlor. The wallpaper in this room is actually a CW repro fabric.

The 4th floor is a family room, Elizabeth's first furniture when she was 6 yrs. old. This is wallpapered in fabric too.

  What's a sewing room without buttons? Here are a few jars from my collection. The sign was a gift from my SIL.
   My Civil War dolls keep me company when I sew. :) This is Kizzie, the seamstress. See her Log Cabin block and tiny stork scissors?
   This is Elizabeth, dressed in a CW outfit a friend made to match one of my CW costumes I wear when I give a program. I have a few child's sewing machines scattered about too. I had a red one when I was little that was lost in our house fire when I was 5 yrs. old. Many of the things I collect are from childhood memories that I seem to have a need to recreate.
 Here's another one of Kizzie. The doll quilt on the bed is c.1880 and nicely hand-quilted.
 A high back oak doll bed with a china doll. The doll quilt on the bed is c. 1860-70, machine-quilted and the one draped over the foot of the bed is also c.1860-70 and tied.
  This is Miss Victoria, dressed in satin and velvet carrying a parasol, she's the lady of the bunch.
 Another view as you step into the studio.
   I'm obsessed with collecting antique card catalog drawers. Remember, I'm a librarian, so of course, I love them. This stack is my favorite. They are so handy to store all kinds of quilting tools. The large 2 gallon "barrel" jar holds rolled bindings. I always make too much and store the leftover rolls here. They come in handy to bind doll quilts or sew several together for a patchwork binding. They never go to waste and they look yummidy together!
 This grouping of dolls and doll beds are on top of my Orphans of War inventory cabinets. No sense wasting any unfilled space! The doll bed and quilt on the left were bought in New Hampshire on a road trip with my Sissy several years ago. The quilt is c.1850's, the oldest in my collection. It is made for a 4-poster bed, with vertical rows of slanted diamonds and finely hand-quilted. The tiny bed has a c.1870 quilt of its own. The black poster bed has a c. 1870 machine-quilted quilt. The large doll bed's quilt is c.1910 nicely pieced, but a crudely quilted solid colored quilt that resembles a Parcheese (Sp?) game. 
 My "Baby Jane, B-4" found a home on the wall next to my desk.
   That's all for tonight. The Cubs are playing without my support. They may need me!

Keep stitchin!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Studio Open House!

  At long last, my studio is finished (except the french doors aren't hung!) and I held my open house yesterday. It was a beautiful crisp autumn day and about 50 ladies showed up. Many came directly from Breakfast Club at Inspirations Quilt Shop in Hills, Iowa, but some friends and teachers from school came too. Kayla greeted visitors and directed them downstairs where I gave the tour and enjoyed the first ever guests to my studio. It was so much fun having someone besides me sitting in the chairs enjoying the space. I had so much fun that I forgot to take pictures of the guests! All my pictures were taken before they arrived or after the event was over. :(

  I served light refreshments including cupcakes, cookies, chocolates, and Halloween candy. My house was already decorated for Halloween, which was fun because few people ever see my decorations.

These are pictures of the upstairs, first the food...
The window ledge between the kitchen and the living room...

The kitchen island...

Mantel decorations...
"Betty Croaker", isn't she a hoot?!
The tour begins...

  This hallway leads to the studio...

 The seating area for small groups...
 Inside the door to the left...
Inside door to the right, my sewing area...
 White cabinets hold my Orphans of War inventory...
Some sewing collectibles on this wall...
My cutting table, 4 views... Sorry for the glare in the first one. The sun really comes in strong in late afternoon. This is a c.1852 pine piece out of a butler's pantry from a home in Burlington, Ia., one of several antique pieces that support the cutting table.
 This oak set of office drawers was purchased in Keokuk...
 Better view of the cutting surface (55" by 82")...

   The walnut cabinet in the front corner has a pink and white porcelain knob with black writing that says "Bass Forte". The whole thing was painted white, even the knob and the door latch that turned out to be brass when I stripped it. I think it was a steal because they didn't realize what was under the heavy paint job, even the interior was painted! The long cabinet on this side was in my old sewing room. It sure enjoys its new space with new companion pieces. ;-) I installed the white column surrounds myself, a 3-day multi-step project. I love the gray foam office mat that is made to cushion your feet when standing for long periods of time. Sometimes I spend hour cutting pieces there.
  My design wall. The blocks are the beginnings of a baby quilt for my boss. She's 40 and having her first baby, a boy!
 My office area, next to a window so I can enjoy the view of the changing seasons...

  Red corner cabinet which houses my daughter, Elizabeth's  doll house furniture. I couldn't part with it after she died and I take such joy in seeing it daily. The pegboard holds most of my cutting tools and rulers and is directly behind me when I sit at my sewing machine.

  Now for the best part, my STASH! It's just around this corner...

  Here it is in all its glory. I love to stand in front of these shelves and fondle all these Civil War fabrics and dream of quilts to come.  One of the ladies was foolish enough to suggest I probably had enough fabric and didn't need to buy more. Need? Silly woman. :)
    My collection of quilt stencils is on the pegboard on the back wall. To the right in the 2 cabinets next to it are my CW repros in browns, blues, and reds. Yummidy!

  I think that is all of the main areas. Tomorrow, I'll try to post again and show pictures with more details. I wish you all could have been here for the open house, but I hope you enjoyed the virtual tour. Thanks for stopping by and for putting up with my spotty posting during these last hectic months of building.

Keep stittchin'.