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April 15, 2019
Another Dog vs Quilt Repair from From My Carolina Home

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, our furry friends can make a mess of a treasured quilt.  This one had been in a closet, but the dog found the door open one day, and began a chewing spree resulting in a lot of damage.  Add to that the wear and tear of a quilt over 60 years old, and it was next to ruin.  But, the quilt was precious, made by a grandmother in the 1950s.  The granddaughter was very upset to find it in this shape, and contacted me to see if it could be saved.  As I haven’t ...

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April 10, 2019
Garden Paths from Ann Quilts

Here's the quilt currently on my work table:

Quite honestly, Grandmother's Flower Garden is not one of my favorite patterns.  And I do get quite a few of them coming in for repair, so I spend quite a bit of time looking at them. 

If I ever make one, which is not at all likely, it'd be like this one.  I like the addition of the tiny diamond paths between the flowers.  These hexies are about 7/8" inch on a side, and the piecing and quilting are quite nicely done.

Also, I really love this particular ...

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April 5, 2019
Mission Impossible: 24 Blocks Completed -- Halfway There! from Cheeky Cognoscenti

Okay, you guys -- I just set a timer for 30 minutes because I don't want to fritter the day away writing a novel (again).  However, my mom and I reached my week's goal of finishing half of the blocks for Lars's Mission Impossible: Graduation 2019 quilt yesterday and I couldn't wait to show you how cool those blocks look up on my design wall:

24 Out of 48 -- We're Halfway There!
SQUEAL!!!!  I included the messy ironing board and step ladder in that photo as scale references, so you can appreciate the impact of those ...

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March 20, 2019
Booming! from Ann Quilts

My friend Julia of Basya Berkman Vintage (the person who supplies me with all the fun clothes needing creative repair solutions that you see in these posts) has told me that I need to do this bit of shameless self-promotion.  This is not in my nature.  At all.  But I am following Julia's advice.....

Firstly, my book has celebrated its first birthday.  And there is Big News here in the land of self-publishing:  My book is now on the shelves at both the museum shop of The National Museum of Quilts in Paducah, KY, and the shop at the ...

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March 1, 2019
Something(s) to Show For Myself: Geese Arcs, Vintage Quilt Repair, and Clam Shells from Cheeky Cognoscenti

Hello, my lovelies, and Happy Wednesday!  I've been "distracted" by work and a series of minor but mildly disabling medical maintenance over the past week or so, but I was finally able to get back to my projects a few days ago and have some progress to report.

Two Arcs Completed, Forty-Six Arcs to Go...
First and foremost, I have actually begun piecing my son Lars's Geese In Circles graduation quilt!  This needs to be completed, as in bound, labeled, and delivered to the church office, no later than May 26th.  I've paper pieced two of the ...

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February 25, 2019
Improved 9-Patch from Ann Quilts

I really enjoyed working on this quilt.  It's a kind of quilt that I have dubbed a "quilt-y quilt" - meaning it personifies what lots of folks think an old quilt ought to look like.  A traditional pattern, scrappy, cozy and bright.

The pattern is called Improved 9-Patch, and with all the curves and narrow points, probably not a beginner's quilt.  The stitching, both the piecing and the quilting, is very well done.

Well at any rate, when I first laid it out to study it and make an estimate, we became friends right away! On top of that ...

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February 15, 2019
Repair of an Extremely Damaged Quilt from From My Carolina Home

Last year, I repaired a Severely Damaged Quilt, showing the steps of that repair on the blog.  I thought that would be the most damaged quilt I would ever see, but I was wrong.  Get ready for a very picture heavy post!!  This one was my biggest challenge yet!

Extreme Damage Quilt Repair at

Large holes were in several places that went all the way through the quilt.  The pink you see underneath the white fabric is actually the new fabric that will become a new backing.

Extreme Damage Quilt Repair at

In places the backing was intact, but the top was just shredded and the batting was gone.

Extreme Damage Quilt Repair at

Along ...

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February 12, 2019
Detour: Exploratory Vintage Quilt Surgery, Or What Have I Gotten Myself Into This Time? from Cheeky Cognoscenti

This quilt belongs to a friend of mine from church choir.  It was made by her grandmother, she has had it since before she was married, and it holds a lot of special memories.  She brought it to me for advice on how she could repair it herself, but I offered to do it for instead.  I knew this was going to be a can of worms and I didn't want to tell someone who is not a quilter how to take apart a treasured quilt that she might not be able to get back together again.

Vintage Quilt ...

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February 10, 2019
The Melrose Quilt - Statistics and Stories from Ann Quilts


Now that all the excitement and preparations around the exhibit have come and gone, I'm publishing the compilations of statistics and stories I discovered about life in Melrose, MA, at the end of the 19th century.

A previous post describes the exhibit and events.  Links to many chapters chronicling the research process can be found below.  I hope you enjoy the saga as much as I enjoyed it!

Here are links to the data.  (Depending on your browser and browser settings, you may see the pages here or you may find them in your downloads.)

List of Names on ...

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January 29, 2019
Two Family Quilts from Ann Quilts

Here are two heirloom quilts that came to me in need of some TLC.


At some point, someone affixed typed labels that identify the quiltmakers and the quilts' histories.  This is what's called "provenance" in the antiques biz, and is always a good thing!

Quilt #1

This is a six-block quilt, with relatively large blocks and wide sashing.  The sashing is made of pink lozenges with white triangles and white cornerstones which together create stars.  There's a nice interplay between the large stars and the delicate embroidery. 

Mostly the quilt needed some stitching to support torn and weak ...

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January 22, 2019
Quilt Block Surgery: How To Change The Center Patch WITHOUT Taking the Block Apart. Also, I Just Remembered I Love Embroidery. from Cheeky Cognoscenti

You guys -- I am so excited about my Jingle BOM quilt right now that I'm GIDDY!  Thanks to all of you who reached out and shared your opinions about the crooked tree block and my idea about embroidering dates on the front of this quilt.  I especially liked the idea of putting my initials on the front of the quilt somewhere -- MONOGRAM!!  As for the tree -- ironically, it was Frog Quilter who said that I should leave the tree the way it is (rather than frog stitching it) because it "shows character and makes the quilt uniquely yours."  When ...

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January 20, 2019
Dog vs Quilt – Repairing the Damage from From My Carolina Home

Don’t you just love dogs?  They are bundles of furry love with doggie breath, and sometimes they like to chew on things.  Recently, I was contacted to repair a well-loved quilt that had seen its share of doggy attention.

Damaged Quilt Repair at

Two of the corners were chewed off completely.  This one was on one end.

Damaged Quilt Repair at

This was the opposite corner.

Damaged Quilt Repair at

The easiest thing to do was to simply cut off the most damaged area, as there wasn’t any of the original fabric to make new blocks.  Using a ruler and rotary cutter, I cut a straight line as close to ...

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January 6, 2019
Quilt Repair, Lights, and an Infinity Scarf from Fret Not Yourself

Happy New Year! Hopefully 2019 is a year of recovery and peace worldwide; a time for us to embrace the best of our beliefs in common humanity and kindness.

In addition to human grandchildren, I have two granddogs {GD1 and GD2.} GD1 has the charming habit of digging underwear out of the dirty laundry, draping it around his neck and prancing around the house whenever guests are present. {No photos of this; just take my word for it.}

GD2 has a very delicate constitution which somehow still allows him to eat aforementioned underwear, socks, and parts of quilts. The first ...

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December 30, 2018
I've Had an Incredible December!! from Ann Quilts


While on my trip to Massachusetts and New Hampshire, my lecture "Quilt Repair Tales" was filmed for the Melrose, MA, local access cable.

Yep.  So now, I'm on TV.   (Right now, it's listed as a Current Video.  Eventually, I suspect it'll just show up on the Videos tab.


As if being on TV wasn't cool enough!  I got interviewed on a podcast!!!

I joined the facebook group associated with a wonderful podcast called "Just Wanna Quilt".  And when I wrote my little intro to the group, I guess I caught the eye of the ...

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December 26, 2018
The Melrose Quilt Returns to Melrose, MA from Ann Quilts

Since my previous post, the events I described then have come to pass.  A 3 1/2 year project had its milestone event.  I’m not going to say that the project reached its conclusion, because I really want the research and storytelling around this quilt to continue.  There are plenty of loose ends left to be tied!

In that previous post, you can read the process leading up to this exhibit.  And at the end of that post, there are links to other posts that I wrote along the way during that 3 1/2 years.

In a nutshell ...

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November 4, 2018
Time off is a wonderful thing! from Pamela Quilts

We had a wonderful well-deserved week of vacation!  We traveled to visit our grandchildren (and their parents) and just enjoy some time away from all the work we've been doing.  We have made it a routine to go up for a week in the fall, and the weather was actually quite good despite the forecast for rain.

We enjoyed watching football, soccer, swimming and gymnastics!  We walked the Nike campus with our son-in-law who works there.  Gorgeous place - and got in 2.2 miles while on our tour.
 Kids and water!
 Sweet statue - me and my beloved years from ...

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October 27, 2018
Potholder Quilt with Disney Friends from Ann Quilts

The owner's great-grandmother made this quilt in 1974 for his mother.  It was made from the fabrics of dresses from his mother's childhood.  The dresses were originally handmade by his grandmother and great-grandmother, and then repurposed for the quilt.  So it is indeed a special memory quilt!

Here is the dated label.

This type of quilt is known as a potholder quilt.  It is constructed from rectangles of fabric that were folded in half, stuffed, and yarn tied.  Then the squares were whipstitched together into the quilt itself.  It makes a reversible quilt, both sides identical.

These are ...

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October 8, 2018
Twisty Turny Genealogy Research from Ann Quilts

So, here's how I had fun on a cool, grey, damp Saturday afternoon.

I’m taking the next step in the research into the names on a quilt that was most likely made in Melrose MA, in the late 1890s.  The story of all the previous work is on this blog, starting with Part 1 and linking along for several more posts.

Alanna Nelson, a Melrose fiber enthusiast and community builder, has taken it upon herself to plan a "homecoming" for the quilt in December, with all sorts of creative associated programming.  The quilt and I will be there ...

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September 8, 2018
Mending the Melrose Quilt from Ann Quilts

This quilt has been on a magical journey of rediscovery.

It was sent to me for repairs a few years ago.  When I told the owner that I'd poked around on and had found some of the names that were written on it, she most graciously gifted me the quilt so I could continue finding its history!  She is an author and historian and has been really happy that the quilt's story is resurfacing.  Turns out, she is Jane Anderson, the person who wrote the screenplay for the movie "How to Make an American Quilt." Honestly ...

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July 17, 2018
Saving a Damaged Heirloom Quilt from Ann Quilts

It's always both sad and wonderful when someone brings me a beloved family quilt that has, well, seen better days, but is still quite full of meaning and sentiment.  What to do?  Often there is lots of fabric damage, and sometimes tears and holes through all three layers of the quilt.  A full-out restoration would cost a whole bunch, maybe more than the owner can afford - but I think there's a bigger issue when it's the sentiment that counts.  Having a quilt end up with as much or maybe even more of my stitches than ancestral stitches ...

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