I love contemporary quilts and art quilts, but I have a soft spot in my heart for traditional patterns and vintage blocks, tops and quilts. Whenever I have the chance to rummage through a flea market or antique, you can bet I'm looking for some old blocks someone has stuffed into a baggie in a corner of a booth. This past April I made 2 great finds at antique shops.
This is a Cactus Basket quilt that is a 3 generation quilt. The blocks where hand pieced by my paternal grandmother who died in 1960. The fabrics look like mostly 1940's with a few 1930's fabrics mixed in with them. We don't know when Grandma pieced the blocks, but we know they were done before 1960.
My grandfather held on to these blocks and they were given to his youngest son's wife upon Grandpa's death, she being the only quilter in the family at the time. A few years ago, Aunt Jerri finished piecing the top and handed it over to me to quilt on my Gammill.
I quilted it with traditional patterns - lots of feathers and outline quilting in the pieced blocks. I rarely quilt those "longarm style" feathers any longer, but I didn't have any experience in Victorian feathers back then, so these were the feathers this quilt received.
The best part besides this being a 3 generation quilt is that my uncle has been able to enjoy his mother's quilt almost 50 years after she has passed! On top of that, there were extra blocks left over that my aunt gave to me. Now I have the opportunity to finish a quilt my grandmother started and enjoy it myself!
This is Brenda's quilt. It has a story behind it, too. Different from the quilt I finished for my aunt, but still just as remarkable and for her to tell. I finished Brenda's quilt with traditional quilting - feathered wreaths, a Victorian feather border, and outline quilting in the pieced blocks.