Wednesday, 11 January 2012

More Dolly Quilts

I can't say that I found the Christmas and New Year period particularly restful. For us ladies it still seems to me that all that cooking and housework doesn't go away! We de-camped to the cottage a few days after Christmas and I did there find a few hours to get on with a bit of sewing. Before setting off, I grabbed my basket and shoved a few handfuls of Civil War reproduction fat quarters in, my "Prairie Children and their Quilts" book by Kathleen Tracy and a few other bits and pieces to allow me to get crafty on a small scale whilst I was away.

First, I finished off a couple of projects. As soon as Kathy's most recent book, "The Civil War Sewing Circle" came out about a year ago, I knew I wanted to make the "Hexagon Flowers Doll Quilt" on the cover. The hexy flowers are traditionally hand pieced over papers so it was the perfect project to take with me on our trip to Pickering back in October. I did most of the flowers whilst I was there, they take quite some time, each individual hexagon template is about 5/8". Every now and then since October, I have picked the project up and done a little more work on it; appliqued the flowers down, pieced the blocks and finally hand quilted this little quilt. I love the border fabric, one of Jo Morton's latest.

Although I've used "sludge" fabrics, I tried to go for quite bright ones in this quilt. It measures approximately 19" x 15.5".

Next, I made this pinky chocolately quilt, mainly as I wanted to practise hand quilting and this quilt had a particularly pretty "orange peel" design which meant a lot of hand quilting. It's not something I'm particularly good at but it's one of those things that needs a lot of practise. I try not to be too precious about it and just enjoy it. It does make you sit down and relax for the odd hour, not something I'm that good at! This one measure approximately 20.5" x 16.5" and is also from Kathy's book "The Civil War Sewing Circle" (the "Pink Patches Doll Quilt"). It was a joy to make, relatively easy and good to practise those setting triangles which all went together really well.

Once I'd finished off the pink squares quilt, I needed to choose another project one rainy afternoon in the West Country. I flicked through Prairie Children and opted for the "Bear's Paw Quilt" as it looked quite simple and was suitably scrappy to go with the limited range of fabrics I had brought with me. I had been working on a large Civil War type quilt at home so I made use of all the scraps from that quilt in this little one. In all honesty, this design hadn't captured my eye at first but I really loved making it and think it's a lovely quilt with bright, jewel-like colours. It measures about 18" square. I managed to compete this in a day or so, after my sister sent me an emergency piece of batting in the post! Somebody please open a decent quilting shop near the cottage!

Last but not least, this quilt caught my eye this week (pattern also in "Prairie Children") and I picked up a suitable border fabric in Lewes on Saturday. This was much harder to put together than I thought as there were a lot of points to match up and not cut off when it came to putting the blocks together. I ripped quite a few blocks apart and remade them, arrrgghhh. This one measures about 19" x 15".

Kathy had written a little message in each muslin triangle which I really liked and so did likewise. Kathy called this one the "Signature Quilt", each triangle could have contained a signature from a loved one instead of the little message of friendship. I tried polyester batting in this one but didn't like it as much as my usual thin cotton batting as I think it has a higher loft.

Now I'm going to try the Crosses Mourning Quilt which Kathy has challenged members of her Yahoo Small Quilts Group to make. Fun! She's a clever lady.

I'm getting quite a little collection of doll quilts now! Charlie Boy is happy.


  1. Oh! Wow! they are beautiful! Absolutely beautiful! I absolutely love the Grandmothers Garden Quilt/Hexagon Flowers Doll Quilt.
    Julie xxxxxxx

  2. I really enjoy seeing all you do. Now, if I only had a cottage to go to maybe I could get a little break from the "house" work and do a bit of sewing myself! Lucky you!

  3. Beautifully made little quilts. I have the "Prairie" book and her "American doll quilts" one. They are both very inspirational.

  4. Lovely stuff- yes, perfect cat sized quiltettes.
    I love the idea of an 'emergency batting' postal service.
    Hand quilting and sewing is a deep pleasure, nothing quite like hand sewing something, but I shall never do another BIG quilt by hand, the one I made took me way too long, so I stick to smaller projects now.

  5. I love your little quilts! The hexagon quilt is beautiful. So much work. You are very talented!

  6. These are lovely! so much fun....I was just thinking that I would like to do a small I am busting to do one...Thanks!

  7. Your quilts are beautiful I bet you have spent a lot of hours on these :)

    Bee happy x
    Have a delicious day!

  8. They are all stunning and far too precious for a doll! x

  9. Hi Hen...Wowee I love your quilts, you have clearly found your niche. One day we may all get invited to your very own 'Hen House Quilt Exhibition'.

    I thought about you and your family over Christmas we went on the 'Santa Special' on the North York Moors Railway with Lennon it was so magical. Hope to see you for the 2012 War Weekend in Madge's Tearoom, you did mention that it may clash with the Munckin's half term...hope it works out for you.
    With love, your Wartime waitress xx

  10. Such lovely little doll quilts. I will be making some dolly quilts for my nieces next month, what would you say is a good basic size?

  11. I just marvel at your skills Hen,I really do.
    There are going to be some lucky dolls out there! :0)

  12. Your dolly quilts are so super sweet Hen!

    Can I ask where did you buy the quilt holder from?
    It's such a great idea!

    BTW...I got the job with the National Trust!

  13. You are a fabulous quilter! I have made a few quilts in my time, but you are amazing. I live in Amish country and the Amish are known for their beautiful quilts. Your work is like the work they do, truly lovely.

  14. What an amazing collection of 'labours of love'. Oh, they are so exquisite, little gems of perfection. I love them!
    Z xx

  15. The most beautiful quilts Hen :o)
    I adore them all, but I have to say my favourite (after a LOT of looking and oooing and aahing) is the Bear Paw. Following a close second is the hexy quilt...
    They are just beautiful :o)

    Enjoy the rest of the week Hen, and take care lovely lady,
    Love Donna xx

  16. Your ittle quilts are delightful! Not sure where your little country hide-away is, but there is 'Beccas Euporium' quilt shop at the Craft Centre in Broadwindsor, up and over to the left from Bridport, for a fabulous fabric fix!!

  17. These are super-cute! I wonder as you visit Bridport whether Dorchester is within your reach? I haven't visited myself but Mum rather likes the quilt shop on the Poundbury estate? It might be worth a try if you are in dire need....there is also the Dorchester Chocolate factory shop there....sorry! xxx

  18. Love your wee quilts. the 'Housemaids Box' is fabulous

  19. Beautiful Hen, you are one clever lady :) x

  20. Hi, my name is Heather! Please email me when you can, I have a question about your blog!


  21. Lovely quilts, especially the last one.

  22. Looking forward to seeing all the wonderful work you are going to do in 2012... My Liberty quilt you made is one of my daughters treasured "keepers" she has taken it to Uni and writes her essays toasty warm wrapped in it. Didn't get to the last handmade and vintage fair but will be at the next one. Regards and Thanks again Karan

    1. Karan, It's so nice to hear from you and I'm thrilled your daughter is attached to her quilt and staying cosy. I won't be doing the Vintage and Handmade Fair any longer, I may do others so please check my sidebar as that's where I'll post any details. Hope you are sewing too and that we will meet up one day soon... Hen xxx

  23. Gorgeous work, love the colours! ... :0)

  24. Hen, your cat's sitting on your quilts in your previous post is so funny, they look absolutely determined to stay put! Your doll quilts are fascinating and beautiful, I feel you're probably now ready to start lecturing on the history of quilts, and the techniques, and also open a quilt shop too. Splendido! Love Vanessa xxx

  25. I adore those doll quilts! Say, have you ever thought of making dollhouse size quilts? I have a new-to-me vintage dollhouse and I need a proper blanket for the master bedroom. You can see the dollhouse on my blog - you may have to use the search feature to find it - it's down 4 or 5 posts.
    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  26. Very nice quilts I like the combinations very much..

  27. Absolutely beautiful doll quilts!

  28. Love the colours.
    Love the fabrics.
    Love the quilts.
    Love the inspiration they give me.
    Thank you bery much:o)

  29. A REALLY good patchwork shop is Midsomer Quilting near Midsomer Norton, very close to Shepton Mallett and Wells. Also, Sew Vintage and Millie Moon, both in Wells itself. Love the blog.


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