Friday, July 25, 2008

Day 96 - of 100 Days of Quilts
Grandmother's Flower Garden from 'Traditional Quilts to Paper Piece'

Don't you just love Grandmothers' Flower Garden quilts! I do. My mother has an exquisite one that I hope to inherit someday, but for now, we have this little gem.
In fact, my mothers very first quilt that she EVER made was a queen size Grandmothers' Flower Garden, and she pieced it all my machine. Yep, by machine. I remember sitting in our home in Lancaster Co. and watching her every evening as she pulled out her sewing machine, put it on the dining room table, and slowly stitch rows of hexagons together. When the quilt top was done, she brought it to work with her, at the MCC Material Resources center. Amish and Mennonite women hand quilted it, and the finished quilt went to the MCC relief sale in Harrisburg PA. (there are MCC sales in many of the US states, so check out the one near you!) Anyway, her quilt was sold in 1983 at the sale...and I would give just about anything to know where it is now.
But I do love this pattern. The only problem is that it is a long process of cutting hexagons, preparing the papers for the English Paper Piecing method, and hand stitching every small piece together. So when we were writing our third book, we took a look at the pattern, and found a new way of putting it together. Instead of hexagons, the quilt is actually made up in rows. Every other row is paper piece, and every other row is pieced. Sew them all together, and they will look like a Grandmothers' Flower Garden. The best way to hide all of these vertical seams, is to quilt it in a traditional method, of outlining the blocks.
So why not play around with your favorite traditional block, and find a new way of putting it together.
See you tomorrow.
AND REMEMBER....this Friday starts our huge new contest! You will want to tell every quilter you know about it.....

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