Posts Written On March 2014

Poster Picture Book to Color — Peter Mabie, 1934

Last year I started scanning and cleaning this cute book by one of my favorite illustrators, Peter Mabie. About half of the 96 pages were uncolored, requiring only a little work in Photoshop to clean up the darkened paper. The remaining pages were all colored/scribbled on by a child using a black crayon (the most difficult color to remove), and therefore take much more time to clean.

Of course, I see these pictures as designs for adorable quilt blocks or embroidery on children’s clothing. To find other illustrations by Peter Mabie, simply type “Mabie” in the search box, or click on the Children’s Books category above to browse my collection. Click any image for slideshow.


Spring Apron Giveaway Winner


And the winner is . . . .


Commenter #19, Joyce Carter

Congratulations, Joyce, and thanks to everyone who participated. Because I enjoy making these aprons so much, I’m going to make the apron giveaway a regular feature on QisforQuilter.


Tumbler Doll Quilt Top

I’m pretty excited today, because I just finished this top for the doll quilt swap sponsored by Lori at Humble Quilts. Although I know the recipient of this little quilt, she doesn’t know I am the one making it for her.  Of course, I don’t know who is making a quilt for me either, so that’s exciting too.

Lori asked that the quilts be made with Civil War reproductions, but she gave me the go-ahead to use prints and shirtings from my own collection of antique tops and blocks. I know some of the prints are not strictly Civil War period, but I’m fairly certain they are all from the 19th Century.

I’ve been dying to use the blue striped fabric for a border, and I think it goes well with the scrappy tumblers. The border fabric, and several other of the darker prints, are an unusual sort of flannel-type fabric — fuzzy on the back, but smooth like a normal cotton on the front. They aren’t very thick, so it’s easy to incorporate them in with the other prints, and you probably would never notice just looking at the front.

The top is about 19″ x 23″ right now (I cropped 1/4″ off the border edge in the photo), but it will probably be a bit smaller after quilting. Now I need to find a cool reproduction fabric for the back, and figure out a quilting pattern.




Spring Apron Giveaway

To celebrate the beginning of Spring, I am offering this bib apron in a floral print.  The apron was made from a large vintage Brunschwig & Fils decorator fabric sample, together with a vintage linen embroidered napkin, which I embellished with a bit of running stitch in embroidery floss.  I then trimmed the apron with some of my favorite old 100% cotton bias tape.

If you would like to enter to win this apron, please let me know in a comment on this post.  I will use a random number generator to select a winner on Friday, March 28, at 6:00 pm PDT.




Mourning Lucy Miniature Quilt

This is a memorial quilt for my recently deceased almost 17 year-old dog, Lucy. I made the quilt using fabrics from antique tops and blocks, including mourning prints, shirtings, homespuns, and added some old pink pieces for my sweet girl dog.

The quilting pattern in the blocks is made up of diagonal lines and circles, while the border is quilted in an egg and dart cable.

Mourning Lucy Miniature Quilt
Martha Dellasega Gray, 2014
Machine Pieced, Hand Quilted
19″ x 23″




Nancy Page Summer Garlands Quilt, 1936 – Pattern #2

Pattern #2 contains the first of 20 bowknots in this design. One thing I really enjoy about Nancy Page patterns is the attention to detail in the instructions and patterns. The Page patterns assume a moderate knowledge of quilting ability (as do most vintage patterns), and there are not many illustrations, but the instructions are better than most of the vintage newspaper patterns.

UPDATE:  Links to all the patterns are located on the last post in this series.



1920s Style Aprons

The past week I have been experimenting with aprons again, the pattern inspired by the aprons in my 1920s Herrschner’s catalogs. I used this same pattern for my Valentine apron, but this time I am changing it up a little by using vintage linens and adding embroidered details. To make them hang better and look nicer on the inside, the aprons and pockets are all lined with white or ivory vintage sheeting.

The first apron was cut from half of a vintage damask tablecloth and a Madeira cutwork linen napkin, the embroidered corner of of which was used on the neckline, while the opposite plain corner decorates the pocket. I added some running stitches and floral embroidery, and cut the bias tape out of a small floral scrap. Twill tape in a natural shade was used for the ties.




The second apron is made from the other half of the damask tablecloth, but this time I used a vintage embroidered antimacassar set on the neckline and the pockets. I love the crocheted edging on these pieces. For this apron I used a slightly larger bias tape maker (the 3/4″ instead of 1/2″), and I like it much better. Some of the seams are a little thick where the embroidered pieces are set in, and this slightly wider bias tape is easier to work with. Also, I think it’s nice to be able to see more of the colorful little prints.



The last apron is made with a piece of vintage pillow ticking and another Madeira linen napkin. The embroidery is simple on this apron because of the busy print, but I did add a couple of cute vintage buttons to the pockets and pink ribbon ties. The binding is vintage all-cotton bias tape (Trimtex – 6 yards for 10¢). I can’t get enough of that old bias tape.



Today I am drafting a new pattern which is more loose fitting and tie-less. So far I’m really liking it.