Hello Everyone and Happy New Year! Today, I have the last finish for the 2017 Finish-A-Long and it is also my Minis and More for December. You can find my FAL list here and it’s number 6 on the list, making something with my hexies from the #100hexies100days on Instagram.
For the Minis and More Parade on January 2nd, hosted by Sherri and Michele, we were asked to send a picture of something that we made as a gift.
I made these four pillows for my mother, two sisters and brother using the hexies I made during the IG sew-a-long. There are 1″ hexies on the square 16″ pillows and 3/4″ hexies on the 16″ x 12″ pillow. All of the fabrics in the hexies are made from my Grandmother’s, Ethel Knowles, fabrics that my mom made sure I got after she passed away. I’ve had these fabrics for over 25 years and have occasionally pulled out pieces here and there to use, mostly in appliques, but have never used them as main pieces of a project. This post is about these fabrics and some of the quilts that Grandma made. I also have some of her pattern books and cardboard and sandpaper templates that she used to make her quilts.
First, a little about Grandma. She lived in the mountains in Christiansburg, VA. My grandfather died when my mom was two, so Grandma went to work in an overall factory, making jeans and overalls. I’m not sure how long she had been quilting, but I remember always having a quilt instead of a blanket on the bed. These were true patchwork quilts, made from scraps, and went under the bedspread, not used as a bed cover. It was after she retired that she started making more decorative quilts during the early 70’s, at least, that’s what I remember. She made a quilt for each of her 7 children, then made one for each of her 19 grandchildren throughout the 70’s and 80’s. Then she made some extras, how many I don’t know, but my mom has at least one and I have one.
This is my mom’s quilt. Grandma hand pieced, appliqued and quilted her quilts. You can tell this quilt was used and loved. I think mom had this on her bed for a while and I’m sure we crawled all over it.
This is my quilt, Balloon Girl. This pattern is one of the ones that I have. I think Grandma gave this quilt to me when I was 16 or 17. I used it on my bed in my college and first apartment. After that, it stayed on the back of a rocking chair we kept in our room until I moved the chair out. Now, it’s displayed in a family cradle from my husband’s side of the family. It was this quilt that got me interested in quilting.
A lot of work went into these quilts. All the ones I’ve seen of this group have had embroidery on them, too. This is one of my favorite fabrics. I’m pretty sure that my mom had a shirt made with it. You can tell that this piece of it has been used, some of what I have has not been used. Grandma saved all kinds of fabrics; shirts (I have pieces of men’s shirt sleeves), curtains, pillowcases, etc.
This is my youngest sister’s quilt. I have the cardboard template that she used for this quilt, too. I don’t have any of the red fabric, but I’ve been using the green fabric in my applique pieces for years. I also have some of the gold fabric.
This is the bag of fabric I started with when I started the hexies. I do have another small box of fabric and finished blocks, most of that fabric is double knits, though.
You can see that this fabric appears to be from a blouse. Most of the fabric feels like cotton or a cotton/poly blend. Some of them actually feel like lawn. I don’t know if that’s what they are or just the thinner cottons of the time (60’s – 80’s).
This is another of my mom’s quilts that Grandma made later on, I would think early to mid 80’s. I think she went from doing the appliqued quilts to more pieced quilts. The blue fabric in the center is my fabric that I made a skirt out of when I was in college. I went to Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, one town over from Grandma. Sometimes, I would spend the weekend and sew at her house. Obviously, she kept the leftovers from my skirt. There is still a nice size piece of this fabric left.
There are several of the fabrics in this quilt that I used in the hexies. Also, when I was looking at the picture, I wondered why all the star points were cut off. It looks like she appliqued the sashing over the raw edges of the star blocks to connect them together. Again, all the piecing was done by hand and she gathered the inner petals before appliqueing them.
When I was making the hexies, I came across several groups of fabric that had already been cut. This group was one of them. I wonder what Grandma planned to do. One day, I may take these pieces and make a small quilt out of them. However,
when we went camping, I noticed that this quilt had some of the same fabric in it.
I’ve been using this quilt in the camper for years. Before that, I used it on my guest bed in my old house, over 25 years ago. I guess I had forgotten that this quilt came from her, I thought it was made by my other Grandmother, Rebecca Vaughan, because my mom gave me her red and blue quilt at the same time as the pinwheel quilt.
I think Grandma Vaughan only made utility type quilts though. This one is also in the camper and is nice and warm. It has truly been loved. It started on a bed, then it was used at the pool during swim meets, has been to the beach and now lives in the camper.
So here are the four pillows again. I had fun piecing and quilting them in a modern style. I did not have time to make one for me, but I’m not going to let too much time pass before I do. I have the hexies made, but I thought maybe a Dresden Plate pillow might also be nice.
I made one more hexie pillow for a gift for my sister-in-law. You can see that I used two of Grandma’s fabrics. The rest are Garden Delights by Gray Sky Studio for In the Beginning fabrics. They blend in very nicely, don’t they.
Thank you for staying with me for this long post, but I enjoyed showing off Grandma’s quilts and fabrics. Again, I hope you have a Happy New Year!