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I am a quilter living in Woodbridge, Suffolk who has made quilts since I was a teenager. I also ring bells! Both are great British traditions....I will try to feature some of my antique Welsh and Durham quilts, the quilts I make myself, my quilting activities and also some of my bellringing achievements. Plus as many photos as I can manage. NB: Double click on the photos to see greater detail, then use back button to return to the main page.

Wednesday 25 June 2014

Another Wave Quilt

Earlier, I showed a Cumbrian strippy quilt that I had bought; I had wanted an example of a wave quilted bed quilt. The wave pattern, an allover quilting pattern, is typical of Cumbria, the Isle of Man and Ireland. Surprisingly, there was another wave quilt available at a reasonable price - here it is. It is a utility quilt, made of scraps and offcuts in a frame pattern. The quilt measures 72" by 87".

One side is made of cotton sateen prints and blue fabrics. I had thought that there were two blue fabrics - but looking closely, you can see that it is only one re-used fabric, where a seam has been unpicked. Part of the fabric, which was exposed to sunlight, was faded,  while the portion protected in a seam is unfaded. The quilt cannot have been much used as the threads still remain from the unpicking.

The quilting is a very even looking stitch. I am wondering how this pattern was marked? I suppose a series of triangles...but how did they keep them in line across the width?

The back is a cotton sateen in the same floral pattern. The quilt probably dates from the 1920's. The quilt measures 72" x 87". The wadding seems to be a thin wool filling. The edge is finished with three lines of machine stitching. The seller had no information of the origin of the quilt. It was just one of those things that had always been around! The seller was from Poole, Dorset.

Friday 20 June 2014

Single Durham Quilt 1920's - Middridge nr Shildon

Here is a single quilt that I bought recently. It has come with a good can see that it has a frill on three sides, with the head kept plain...the colours are a tan colour with a plain white cotton reverse. The fabric is a crisp taffeta or artificial silk.

The quilt comes from the village of Middridge, near Shildon and Newton Aycliffe. A nearby quarry employed many miners and is now protected as it is the site of rich fossil-bearing limestone.

This quilt dates from the 1920's. The seller stated "This was made either by my mother Elizabeth, or my Aunt Bessie. Aunt Bessie probably intended it for her bottom drawer, but didn't marry my uncle until her fifties.

She was a teacher and also, earlier, a tutor to two boys of the Shaftoe family near Spennymoor.
I hope you're pleased with the quilt. In my family it was much loved, but not often used - only for guests.

You must realize as I'm in my seventies, that we're talking about the early twenties or so, when she would have been about twenty herself, not too long after art, Art Silk, as it was known, had come onto the market".

You can see that the quilt has a nice floral centre. Twisted feather borders are seen, with a rose in each corner. It is interesting to see how the designs of single quilts differ from those of the larger quilts...the smaller size presented a challenge, and the designs have to be simplified to suit this.

Sunday 15 June 2014

Canadian Red Cross Quilts at Melton Old Church

We had a lovely walk last weekend - the weather has been lovely and sunny - we decided to walk around Ufford - and end up at Melton Old Church. I knew that Jackie's exhibit of Canadian Red Cross quilts would be there - and that there would be a cup of tea and some cake!

Melton Old Church is not near the present village - and there is a newer, Victorian Church, St Andrews, which now serves the village. Like many villages, the focus of commerce had shifted, away from the old village, towards the main road and the river.
 But a group of local people have banded together to preserve the old, Mediaeval Church. The quilt exhibit was one such fund raiser.

You can double click on the photos, to read the information on the information panels....

The church is a relatively small country church - but the quilts were hung in a semi circle, each with an informative sign.

The exhibition tied in well with the DDay landing anniversary - but this was rather fortuitous - the weekend just happened to be one that Jackie and her husband, both keen sailors, were not on their boat!

The soldiers quilt that I found on Ebay - perhaps first world war - or just an older quilt that was donated to the Red Cross cause? It has a War Services label on the back, from Hamilton Ont.

The  Afghan with a red cross, which came from a hospital boat.

A fan quilt...

The local primary school is presently studying WWII - and were meant to walk down to the church and have a look at the quilts - but it was decided that the country lane was not safe enough for the children to walk along - what a sad reflection on today's drivers.

Wednesday 11 June 2014

Just a bit more quilting needed....

Do you remember, that a few weeks ago, I machine quilted a hexie flower top for Karin Hellaby? The good news is, this quilt is the "cover quilt " for her new book. The other news was, the corners really needed to be quilted! I had run out of steam and ideas, and had left them unquilted. So, the quilt was mailed back from the photographers, so that I could do a bit more quilting. 

I decided to do a simple grid. The rest of the border was 3/4" lines, so I decided that a 3/4" grid would look simple....traditional yet modern. It did not take long to mark and sew, with a walking foot and orange rayon thread. Then, the ends were tied off and darned in....

A photo of the entire quilt. It went back to Karin, and then to the photographers....looking forward to seeing the book, hopefully in time for the Festival of Quilts.