Posts Written On April 2014

Seven Sisters Quilt Top

I can hardly believe it’s been a whole year since I finished hand piecing the blocks for the Seven Sisters quilt top. Although I managed to get the blocks sewn together with the white triangle pieces, the top languished for many months because I couldn’t decide if I wanted a border, and if so, what type of border. Last week I decided to tackle the problem again, and I’m very pleased with the result. For the scrappy striped border, I used some of the same vintage swatches that I used to make the blocks. The top with border is 80″ x 96″.

Some of the seams have a little bit of puckering, but I feel confident that it won’t show once the top is hand quilted. You can read about my progress making this top in the following links: design, blocks in progress, more blocks in progress, and blocks finished.






Poster Picture Book to Color — Peter Mabie, 1934

I’m finally done restoring these images, and in the process I figured out an easier Photoshop method for cleaning up the pictures that have been colored with dark crayons. It feels good to be able to preserve these cute drawings for current and future Peter Mabie fans.

To view the other illustrations, simply type “Mabie” in the search box on my sidebar, or click on the Children’s Books category to browse my collection. Click any image for slideshow.


Tumbler Doll Quilt for Swap

Today I finished the swap Tumbler Quilt, and I am excited to put it in the mail. After considering several different quilting designs, I ended up outline quilting inside each tumbler piece, just like I did on my bed-sized version. I think it gives the quilt an old-fashioned look.

The quilt will be a  surprise, because Lori at Humble Quilts set up the swap so that none of the participants know who is making their quilt. Hopefully, my person likes the antique fabrics in her little Tumbler Quilt — I know I’m looking forward to receiving my surprise quilt later this month.

Tumbler Doll Quilt
Martha Dellasega Gray, 2014
Machine Pieced, Hand Quilted
19″ x 23″



Bow Alphabet Embroidery Designs, 1909

These sweet bow alphabet letters were drawn by Sarah Hale Hunter and published in newspapers on two consecutive Sundays in 1909. She suggests the following method for executing the designs:

The letters should be carefully padded and then worked in solid satin stitch, making the stitches as close together and as evenly as possible. The bow may be outlined or embroidered solidly.

A pretty effect for towels is to work the letter in white and the bow in a color. Use mercerized cotton No. 25 for the embroidery.

It seems to me there are many other ways you could embroider these bow letters. I think it would be just fine to simply outline the letters and bows in stem or chain stitch, or you could outline and then fill the letters with some other stitch — seed or French knots or even narrow stripes in back stitch.

Although the patterns were designed “for marking your linen,” I am imagining an adorable alphabet quilt for a little girl. Click any image for slideshow.


Nancy Page Summer Garlands Quilt, 1936, Pattern #6

Oops . . . I forgot to upload the regular Thursday Summer Garlands Quilt series pattern. If I were actually working for a newspaper in the 1930s, I’d probably be in big trouble.

To find previous patterns in this series, type “Summer Garlands” in the search box on my sidebar. On the last post in the series, I will add links to each of the patterns.

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


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