Category Archives: historical quilt block


Sometimes the best way to learn a lesson isn’t just hearing the words, but putting it into practice by experimenting with it and finding its truth for yourself instead of taking someone else’s word for it.” 

― A.J. DarkholmeRise of the Morningstar

I’ve been away for awhile- – –   Life calling….

I found this wonderful square,  designed by Laura Wheeler and published in the ‘Cincinnati Enquirer’ in the 1930’s.  It’s called ‘Hidden Flower’.   I really wanted to see how it fit together and how it assembled.  So by digging in my stash,  I came up with some possibilities and put together a couple of Blocks. 


The quarter circles were large enough to add some machine and hand appliquéd highlights.  Now to translate this into materials for which I actually have enough yardage. . . . 

The piece is 26×52″.  It looks like the color is draining out of the bottom.  Haven’t decided on a name.  Any suggestions?

It is also hand quilted



Filed under applique, Experimentation, historical quilt block, quilting, quilts

Adding and Subtracting

“For life to be meaningful, add a little sacrifice, subtract anger and hatred, multiply friends and divide love for everyone to share.” unknown

This quilt started with the block “Shooting Star” first published in 1897  with the Ladies Art Co.



This block goes diagonally down the quilt.  On each side of this set of squares, a single element is added or subtracted from the original block.

adding160 x 60 inches

machine pieced, machine quilted

adding2Backed and bordered with striped shot cotton in coordinating colors.  This will be a birthday gift for a very special person!


Filed under batiks, historical quilt block, machine quilting, quilting, quilts


“Summer’s lease hath all too short a date.”
― William Shakespeare, Shakespeare’s Sonnets

I’m feeling the changing of the seasons in my bones. The nights are cooler, the heat less intense, people are settling into routines again, leaves are starting to change on the side of the mountains.

I’m starting to think about new projects. This is one that is just completed.cornucopia1

Machine applique, hand quilted

cornucopia 3



50×70 inches
Completed – summer 2014
The square is “Lillian’s Favorite” by Clara Stone published in Practical Needlework, ca. 1906


Filed under applique, batiks, hand quilting, historical quilt block

Dreaming of Spring Reprise Again

“I do not want art for a few any more than education for a few or freedom for a few” William Morris


(Just an update – – I just got word that this quilt will hand the the “500 Traditional Quilts Exhibit” at the Internation Quilt Festival/Chicago, April 7-9, 2016.  It has also  hung in Internation Quilt Festival/Houston, 2014 and at Quilt!Knit! Stitch! 2015 in Portland, Oregon.  Then it will come home!!  I’m so excited about the attention that this quilt has gotten)

At the urging of a friend, I entered this quilt in a competition to be published in a book “500 Traditional Quilts-500 series” by Karey Patterson Bresenhan. This quilt was accepted for publication in the book and it may be on display with other quilts from the book at the 40th Anniversary of Houston’s International Quilt Festival this fall. I sent it off this morning on its journey (and mine). I am so excited about this and also still pretty unbelieving! Here’s a link to the actual book

dreaming 2

Another friend of mine, Danny La, took the professional photos for the book (these aren’t Danny’s photos!)

The quilt is hand appliqued, hand quilted and the design behind the tulips is stenciled on with Paint Stiks.


Filed under applique, historical quilt block, quilting, quilts, traditional block

Spring to Summer

“When you come to the edge of all that you know, you must believe one of two things: either there will be ground to stand on, or you will be given wings to fly.”
O.R. Melling, The Summer King


Days are longer, days and nights are warmer, spring flowers are disappearing, strawberries are about to turn red, peaches appear as small nubbins on the tree, the first spinach, lettuce and chard have been enjoyed.  Spring is nearly over.spring to summerThe center applique square in this quilt was the last piece of applique that my sister completed before she passed away from cancer last fall.  I felt it deserved a place of honor and remembrance.  I surrounded the applique with a block called “Broken Stone” which was published by the Kansas City Star on January 4, 1950.

size: 36×36

hand appliqued, machine pieced, hand quilted


Filed under applique, batiks, dying with cancer, hand applique, hand quilting, healing, historical quilt block, quilting, wall quilt


“In sorrow we must go, but not in despair. Behold! we are not bound for ever to the circles of the world, and beyond them is more than memory.”
J.R.R. Tolkien

The days and weeks are passing.  We must all find ways to remember and ways to move on after the loss of a loved one.

My sister and I shared the love of fabric, thread, quilts, and needlework.  I have been hibernating in my sewing cave trying to absorb new colors, textures, designs, combinations.  For me it is a healing process.

My sister and I often shared books or patterns that we especially liked.  One of the last was by Jane Townswick. The center applique square is from this book and is the last quilt block that my sister made this past summer.


The square surrounding the center are “Broken Stone” published in the Kansas City Star on January 4, 1950. The fabric was purchased at in Fairfield, OH.

Memories detail

The above is detail of hand quilting in the darker fabrics. Leaf designs reflect the leaves on the applique.

Size: 40×40
Finished 2012
Machine piecing, hand applique, hand quilted

Leave a comment

Filed under applique, batiks, hand applique, hand quilting, healing, historical quilt block, quilting, quilting design, wall quilt