Friday, April 5, 2013

Whew, Im beat..

Lugged the frames from the storage unit to the library, sewed sleeves on quilts for three days, prepared supporting materials, created hand outs, made pretty labels..


With the help of a couple of great library staff, I hung the 200 Years of Quilting show in about 2 hours.

For all the trouble, only 20 people came to see them.  Not a single quilt guild member came.  This is a guild of 166 people.  So, Im not sure if they think my little town is out in the boonies and too far to travel to (8 miles from KC Metro, 8 miles from Lawrence)  or if there is just not any interest in the old quilts.  I just don't understand that because I have been known to travel 200 miles to see an old quilt!

But those who came were so VERY appreciative.  They stayed for a long time, studied the quilts, talked with me at length about the quilts and the quilt study.  It was good and I made some new friends.  That's what it is all about.  Sharing and introducing my passion with others, teaching someone something new that didn't know about before.  Three people want me to look at an old quilt in their posession.  I'm so very pleased.

Here a the not so great pictures I was able to get, sorry for the blurry ones.

So now its time to but them back in their archival boxes, find a new home for the racks and poles, take a little nap, and get back to sewing!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

200 Years of Quilting!

I have been asked by my local Community Library in Linwood, Kansas to hang a small quilt showing for an event called First Thursday. Each month on the first Thursday, they feature a local artist and musician.

Since I dont have enough of my own quilts ready for such a show, I will be hanging 14 quilts from my own collection. If you are close enough to stop by, I would love to meet you there.

The Linwood Library is on KS Hwy 32, 8 miles East of North Lawrence and 8 miles West of Bonner Springs. The quilts will be hanging between 6:30 and 8:30 pm. The live music will be playing in the back room of the library and snacks will be available. Here is the hand out that I will have on the quilts and ephemera. I hope something peeks your interest enough to entice you to come!

The Quilts

1807- Baer/Meyer wedding quilt. The label on the back of this quilt says it was made in 1807 for the wedding of Catherine Baer and John Meyers which occurred on December 25, 1808. It is not known who made the quilt, but most likely the mother of the bride. Catherine was the sister of John Baer, a publisher in the colonial days of our country who published Baer’s Almanac. John and Catherine are not quite so famous. They lived their lives quietly moving between Honey Brook Twp, Chester Co, PA and Lancaster Co, PA. They were married in Lancaster Co and are buried in Chester Co, PA. Many of the fabrics are chintz and still maintain their original shine. The deterioration of the brown fabric is due to the metal mordant used in the fabric dying process to obtain the brown colors. On the table you can see some examples of John Baer’s publishing and the genealogy of Catherine Baer and John Meyer.
(2) 1860s Red and Green Rose Quilt, appliqué, Red and Green appliqué quilts were very popular during the 1860s and 70s. This is the time frame that most of the Baltimore album quilts were produced.

(3) Mid 1800s Goose Chase, Hand pieced and hand quilted. On the table you can see fabric research books that help identify the fabric and quilting styles of quilts from 1800 – 1960. (4) 1860 – 1880s, Basket quilt with cheddar yellow binding. This cheddar yellow was discontinued due to the toxic nature of the use of chromium in the dying process. An interesting element of this quilt is that the hand quilting is done in two colors of thread. Brown in the basket blocks and light blue in the solid blocks. On the table you will find some of my research books about fabric production and examples of 18th Century fabric.

(4) 1860 – 1880s, Basket quilt with cheddar yellow binding.
This cheddar yellow was discontinued due to the toxic nature of the use of chromium in the dying process. An interesting element of this quilt is that the hand quilting is done in two colors of thread.  Brown in the basket blocks and light blue in the solid blocks. On the table you will find some of my research books about fabric production and examples of 18th Century fabric.

(5) 1882, dated on quilt. Made for a member of the Olds family. The Olds patriarch owned the first bank in Amity, AR. He left his fortune to his two daughters, neither of which had children. The two girls left the fortune in a trust called the Olds Foundation, to be donated for future development projects for the state. When the estate was sold after the death of the last remaining heir, the quilts sold at auction. I have three of the family quilts. On the table you can see a published genealogy of the Olds Family.

(6) Early 1900s, No pattern, 18th century fabrics and indigo blues. This is a wonderful fabric study of 18th century fabrics as well as a beautifully graphic design. On the table you can see some fabric swatch cards from around 1890 that includes indigo blue, cadet blue, turkey red and black mourning prints.

(7) 1915 , Bessie Oatman was married to John Davis in 1891. About 25 years later, women family members and some of her close friends made these quilt blocks for her. I think Bessie put the quilt together and quilted it herself, but I don’t have any way of knowing that for sure. On the table is the autograph book from the time of her wedding and contains many of the same signatures that are included on the quilt. Also there is a transcription of the autograph book, the names on the quilt, her genealogy and cemetery index where many of the signers are laid to rest.

(8) 1930s Nancy Page Vine quilt. Nancy Page Quilt Club was a block of the month newspaper column in the 1930s. This example was purchased at auction in Topeka, Kansas. On the table you can see the original patterns used to create this quilt published beginning in March of 1931 (9) 1930s top, quilted circa 1970. This Seven Sisters quilt has great examples of very 1930s fabrics and designs. I especially love the pink with dots.

(10) 1934-40 Laura Wheeler Snowball Wreath This quilt was made from a pattern offered for sale in the newspaper. Laura Wheeler and Alice Brooks published pictures of the quilts in the newspaper and you could order the full pattern. The quilts made from Laura Wheeler and Alice Brooks patterns are rarer due to the complexity of the designs, the difficulty in drafting from the picture and the cost of ordering. They are the next research project that I will be working on. On the table you can see some of the Laura Wheeler and Alice Brooks pattern ads.

(11)1948, This is a Mariner’s Compass and is hand pieced. The circles are not set into blocks, but set together with melon shaped background pieces. This is very difficult piecing. It has a plain border with mitered corners. It is heavily quilted with feathers and has a ¼ inch hand applied binding. The quilt is signed in the upper right hand corner in white embroidery: “Made for Luther LaMotte in 1948 by Jeanie & Ella Linthicum”.  

(12, 13) 2003-5 – Melodies of Baltimore, made as a fund raiser for cancer research. The project was initiated at the Elly Sienkiewicz Appliqué Academy in Williamsburg, VA. Volunteers from all over the country were given a 12 inch square of background and a small piece of pink fabric. Background, pink and green border fabric was donated by RJR Fabrics. Each person created an appliqué block in the Baltimore Album style, dedicating their block to someone in their family or circle of friends who was impacted by cancer. The maker also signed their name to their block and returned it to the organizers. The quilts were assembled, sent out first to five volunteers to apply the saw tooth borders, then to more volunteers to do the hand quilting. Enough blocks were created to make 5 quilts. After long consideration, the quilts were auctioned on Ebay. With cash donations and my own funds, I was able to secure four of the five quilts. The quilts raised $19,000 for the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Since I was able to win four of the five quilts, all the ephemera was also sent to me. On the table you will find the letters mailed in with the blocks along with pictures of all the blocks submitted. These quilts are available for display at any cancer fund raising event by contacting me in advance.

(14) 2007 – Round Robin. The center of this quilt was made by Judy Masur. Then it was passed around to four other quilters, who each added a round to the quilt, and returning to Judy after the last round. The top traveled from Kansas to California, Ireland, Baltimore, Maryland, then back to Kansas. It was quilted by Nan Doljac of Lawrence, Kansas.

Judy Masur

Judy Masur, of Linwood, Kansas is a member of the Kaw Valley Quilters Guild, Flint Hills Quilters Guild and MOKA, a four state quilt study group.

Judy has been collecting antique textiles for many, many years and enjoys the study of quilting history in America. Her collection of quilts includes quilts, tops, and blocks from three centuries of American quilting, the 19th and 20th and now the 21st centuries.

The oldest quilt in the collection is dated 1807 and the most recent dated 2012. She began learning her sewing skills at the age of 6, attempting her first quilt at around 12 years old. These early examples of her work along with a collection of about 300 pre 1900 quilts and tops were lost to a house fire in 2004. Since then she has amassed a new collection of fewer items, but much better examples.

 She has an extensive library of books on quilt and textile history and a growing collection of antique and vintage quilt patterns to which she refers to analyze the age, style and techniques of the artifacts in her collection.

She is a quilt designer and is currently working on digitizing her designs for sale on the internet. In 2012 she participated in the McCall’s Quilt Design Star competition, progressing through the first three rounds of competition to been included as one of nine finalists in the professional category. A picture of her final entry will be published in the May/June 2013 issue of McCall’s Quilting.

Judy makes her living long arm quilting, designing patterns, designing/creating commission quilts and custom sewing. She also operates an online store that carries fabric, her own quilt patterns, vintage textiles and used books. She enjoys talking about quilts and quilting to anyone at any time and is available for speaking engagements and trunk shows.

A showing of quilts created by Judy is planned for a future First Thursday, most likely the fall of 2013.