The 1857 Quilt: the first six!

This is a slap dash post, but I have to get it up now or I’ll just let it ride for another six blocks.

The following are my attempts at needle turned applique.  I have done it before, but never for such a large project as this!  This is 64 blocks from an antique wedding quilt to be dished out each month a few at a time.  I am playing catch up as I only started last month… that meant that I was already 4 blocks in the hole!  I have one left for February, and then the three for this month to do.  I will get there!

first-sixI must admit, I had a real hate thing going on the upper right flower block.  It was far more complicated than it looks to do that orange part of the blossom.   It was supposed to be satin stitched and I just couldn’t pull it off!   In the end, I cheated and used a blanket stitch on my sewing machine to finish the edge, cut it with a selvage, then turned it under and made a bazillion little stitches to hold it down.  In spite of that,

I am learning tons, having fun, and getting better block by block.

Follow the link on the right to be taken to Sentimental Stitches for a bit of history and pictures of the original old quilt.

21 thoughts on “The 1857 Quilt: the first six!

  1. katechiconi says:

    So, not a glutton for punishment at all, then…? But it’s very good that you feel you’re learning a lot. By the end of the quilt, you’ll look back on the tricky orange flower and wonder what all the fuss was about. It’s looking brilliant!

    • Lynda says:

      Kate, that is high praise coming from you! I’ll take it, thank you! As for the flower, I’m just glad it is done. I have never been one for embroidery and satin stitching was really beyond me. I tried three different types of thread and finally gave in and machined it. The applique stitches, so long as they are very tiny, don’t need to be so perfectly even. I do all this work under a 6 inch magnifying ring light, otherwise I couldn’t see to do any of it. 😉

        • Lynda says:

          LOL! I try to keep my thread a bit shorter for this kind of work, but inevitably, I get knots anyway. Sometimes I just have cut the thread, pull several stitches, tie it off and start with new. I would never be able to see to do this work without mine.

  2. shoreacres says:

    Learning, having fun, and improving skills — what could any of us ask beyond that? The quilt’s beautiful. I do love applique, although I’m sure I’d never have the patience for it. Besides, it’s too late in life to take up something that many began in their teens, or earlier. I’ll stick with stitching words together, and admire your needlework skills!

    • Lynda says:

      It is never too late, Linda. I didn’t start till about 4 years ago, with the maple leaf and pumpkin table runner I made for a wedding gift, then nothing, now this project. I learned to work the sewing machine and made clothing for myself early on, but it is nothing like this kind of work. Never say never, Linda! 🙂

      • shoreacres says:

        Life’s full of choices. Any time I devoted to stitching would be time taken from writing, reading, or photography. My remaining years are too few to take up something so time and labor intensive. Unfortunately, and despite what the gurus tell us, we can’t have it all!

  3. claire93 says:

    I look forward to seeing this project coming along ^^
    Personally, I don’t enjoy appliqué, but I do appreciate the workmanship that goes into this kind of block.

    • Lynda says:

      Claire, I look at my work and think I could do better. Then I look at the original quilt and think I’m in the running. Bit by bit it gets easier to do. I think I will start posting the monthly block finishes as sets after this. Thank you for your encouragement!

  4. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    How I admire your determination on this project, Lynda! I made myself an Indian Cotton (gauze) tunic with a lovely pattern across the yoke, ‘way back in the 70’s… It turned out alright, but I soon learned that type of hand needle-work was not my favourite way to pass time; )
    I’m sure this piece will be a shining example of “practice makes perfect”, by the time you’re finished (or you’ll have cured yourself of the urge to embroider permanently; )
    Looking forward to seeing the squares, as they come!

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you! I really am having fun with this and not worrying a bit about being perfect. HA! The original creators of the blocks weren’t all that perfect. 😉

    • Lynda says:

      I have been doing pretty well with these, Patti. However this weeks block is cut, mapped out, and still sitting on my quilting table, waiting for me to start. It’s a real doozie!

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