Thursday, November 28, 2013

We have a winner/s!

I've won a prize in the Blog Hop - I can't believe it!

Thank you all for adding a comment to my Blog Hop post.  The random number generator has chosen Leonie from Germany, Cheryll from New South Wales, Debra from Oklahoma, Renata from South Dakota and Janet from Yukon Territory, Canada. Congratulations to the winners, your patterns are on the way.

A big thank you to Michelle from for organising the party, I'm looking forward to the next one.

To everyone else - don't despair, the patterns are all available at  The Australian dollar is losing ground at the moment, so it you live in the USA the patterns are even cheaper for you.

The new pattern is Adaline Gibson's block and it will be on the website on Sunday 1st December.  It's a quick one to make ... which is just as well, Christmas is 27 sleeps away ....

Blog Hop Party - You are All Invited!

This is my first Blog Hop Party, come and help me celebrate!
Thanks to Michelle at the Quilting Gallery for organising it, must be a lot of work Michelle!

Blog Hop Party with Give-Aways

My Giveaway

this giveaway is now closed

I am giving away five single patterns of the Chester Criswell Quilt.  The patterns are applique reproductions of my red and green signature quilt made in 1852.  15 patterns have been released so far and are available at  my website Two Bits Patches.  If you are one of the five winners you can choose any one pattern from the fifteen available, or you can chose to have the pattern for Block #16 which will be ready on 1st December.

Block 1       

Block 2     

Block 3    

Block 4    

Block 5   

Block 6  

Block 7  

Block 8   

Block 9  

Block 10

Block 11

Block 12  

Block 13

Block 14

Block 15

The patterns are downloadable pdf files, so you don't have to wait for the mail.  Each pattern has the template and instructions and a story about the wedding guest who signed the quilt.

To enter, leave a comment with the pattern number you would like to win, and tell us where in the world you are from.  One entry per person. The five winners will be chosen at random after the blog hop finishes on 26th November.  I will contact you if you make your email address visible, if I can't get in touch with you by the end of November I will chose another winner.

HINT:  Block 1 is free on the website, so you can go to Two Bits Patches now and download Block 1.  I can send the winning patterns to any email, so you can chose to have a pattern sent to a friend or even as a Secret Santa gift or Kris Kringle.  I'm good at secrets!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Photos of Mary Wilson's Block 14

Have you finished Block #14?  If you have we would all like some show and tell.

Block 14 Mary Wilson

I was working on this block while DH and I were away on a short holiday break.  Whenever I see it I think of the beach we walked along and the lovely bed and breakfast accommodation (complete with sauna and massage).  This block makes me smile.

Do you make associations with quilts you are working on?  I know a lot of women take hand sewing along while waiting for children's swimming lessons or sporting activities; some women are sewing in hospitals or sickrooms.  How does the context of your stitching make you feel about your finished project?

If you have posted about Block #14 just follow the instructions below.  If you haven't a blog you can send me your photo and I'll add it here.

1. Write your blog post. Publish it on your blog.
2. Copy the link of the specific blog post. This is not just the link to your blog itself (, but the link to the specific post: (
3. Click the blue link up button below and paste your link into the box.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Quilting Bee Part 1

I enjoy buying books about quilting almost as much as buying old quilts.  My latest is Ruth Finley's "Old Patchwork Quilts and the Women Who Made Them".  This is an ex-library copy, but it is a first edition from 1929.

It's a surprising interesting book to read.  Finley was born in Akron, Ohio (just like my sister) and became a journalist and a collector of quilts.  There is a fascinating article about her here at She did many interviews with women about their family's quilts, trying to capture the social context as well as the quilts.

I set Alice McClellan's story at the quilting bee where the CCCQ was being quilting.  I was quite pleased to then read about quilting bees in 'Old Patchwork Quilts'; especially about quilting a bridal quilt.

"The quilting (bee) was in those days considered the most solemn and important recognition of a betrothal." 
"The dower chest of the old-time bride was supposed to contain at least a "baker's dozen" of quilts.  Twelve of these were fashioned with a view to every-day use; the thirteenth was a "bride's quilt", a piece de rĂ©sistance so elaborate of design in both pattern and quilting that it was to all intents and purposes a counterpane.  The bride's quilt was planned and executed only after a girl was definitely engaged.  The others, so far as piecing went, were the work of the years of maidenhood.  And, as top after top was finished, they were laid away to await quilting.  There were several reasons for this latter custom, the most important being that the real cost of a quilt came only when the wadding and back had to be supplied.  This expenditure was pointless until such time as a new home was about to be furnished.  So to invite guests to the quilting of a girl's "tops" was the equivalent of announcing her approaching marriage."
I guess UFO's weren't such a problem as they are today!

Ruth Finley also writes about the friendship medley quilt.  This was a surprise party, often organised for a newly engaged woman by her best friend.

"At such a party the guests arrived early in the afternoon.  Each brought her own material, and the first thing to be decided was who would piece which pattern.  This was a merry task, for no two blocks might be alike and some were far harder to construct than others.  The rivalry though was for the intricate designs rather than the simple; it was an occasion for displaying one's deftness with the needle.  But there was not too much delay; for it was etiquette that, by the time supper was served, the blocks should be both finished and set together and thus the entire top done.  The material for the set was furnished by whoever it was that got up the party.  Of course, the boys put in an appearance for the feast.
"It was obligatory for the girl honored by a surprise medley to give the quilting bee that must follow to the same list of guests.  I have never seen an unquilted "Friendship Medley" top."

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Photos of Alice Criswell's Block 13

Block 13 was a big one, wasn't it.  But I know that a few are finished now so it's time to share your creations.  It's easy to share your blog entry, the instructions are below, or you can send me your photo and I will add it to the post.

1. Write your blog post. Publish it on your blog.
2. Copy the link of the specific blog post. This is not just the link to your blog itself (, but the link to the specific post: (
3. Click the blue link up button below and paste your link into the box.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Block 15 and a Winner

Block 15 Alice McClellan

Block 15 is available at It's a fun block and not too hard.  I've called it Oak Leaf Pinwheel.

There were a lot of buttons in the jar - 253 buttons in fact.  Sandy O is the winner of the Second Year patterns, well done Sandy.  You have one week in get in touch with me.  (Your Blogger profile is set to 'do not show email', so I can't get in touch with you.)  To everyone else, thank you for your guess, better luck in the future.