Quilt from Poly Flinters quilt scrap boxes, Cincinnati Ohio, Circa 1985

I loved to go down to 8th street Cincinnati Ohio where Poly Flinders had cutters and cut out the dress patterns for little girls dresses.  The fabrics were wonderful, embroidery floss available, ribbons, buttons, and even some left over fabric by the yard.  This was 40 years ago and I am still trying to use up some of those scraps. This quilt was a “lark” and in one box of scraps there were dozens of half circles made of light weight blue jeans material.  I decided to use my very old singer (no embroidery stitches there, but just zig zag) to see if i could applique into the half circles.  NO NEW THREAD FABRIC BATTING OR BACKING USED… 100% scraps.

Good for a little tom-boy, a little to flowery for a young man.

Chess board quilt

This quilt was dreamed up as a lark for a grandson who is way to old to want a quilt for christmas but for whom i made this hoping that it would pique his interest.  I began thinking that the whole quilt would be uniquely constructed small chess board blocks but it because apparent that this would take me about 4 years so I put the blocks that I had already made onto a checker background.  I think the idea is really fun, as each chess board is made of scrappy materials, 1.5 inch squares, and stripes cut and sewn in a staggered way (also the border made this way), and then I ran onto some material that actually had tiny chess boards printed on it…. so a couple of those i sashed and used in the quilt.

This was supposed to be quilted on the diagonal for each of the black squares but, using a long arm quilting machine for the first time in my life (to quilt this) it was apparent that straight lines were probably not what the machine was designed to do…. so within about three squares, I began free-motion quilting according to what each piece of fabric had to offer. This included moving around the arms of the pilots wheel, going in and around the large dots, following the leaves and flowers of some of the fabrics, spiral on the tiny polkadots, and so on.  It was a great experience to use the long arm quilting machine. My thanks to Julie of Stitches near Tri-County mall, who was open to my experimentation. For that I am grateful, as I know i broke all the rules about the use of a free floating top on their backing material and the zipper thing to attach the quilt to the frame.

This quilt is not without it gliches, and there will be no blue ribbons, but I am posting the picture in the hopes that my idea will stimulate someone else to do a really good job on a similar style quilt.

Next quilt i do like this i am determined to make the entire backing out of black and white 3.5 inch squares, ha ha…. currently it is all one color backing, black with small random white dots.

BTW, i really did think the border (made with black and white strip material) was a genius idea.


Hazel Irene Milner

Granny square afgan and double wedding ring quilt (created from my mom’s dresses, flour sack material, all scraps: pieced by machine and quilted by hand) by Hazel Irene Milner in Longmont Colorado circa 1950. She was a busy and creative woman: vegetable gardner, farmer, seamstress, cook, quilter, and did needlepoint and crochet. Miss you grannie.

Not an egg this time – but my new scrappy quilt

I have been working on this quilt; diamonds and country points. The center of each of the 13 diamonds (really a square at a 45 degree angle) all with different brown print inner borders, and black print outer borders with country points made with 2 inch squares to frame the brown.

The country points on the inner border are graded from darks to lights, while the points on the black border are graded whites.  The center of each diamond is a random strip patch made with everything from 1.5 inch blocks to 5 inch blocks.

Every single piece of fabric, as well as all the batting was made from a store of fabrics that reaches back about 45 years…. maybe even 50, as that is how long I have lived in this part of the country. And many were from “this is my favorite fabric story” those found as follows:  I play tennis, often hitting by myself on the wall at the courts behind North Avondale Montesori School. I walk there from my house which is nearby. On several trips I happen to notice that there was a shock absorber (from a small car probably) lying in the path. I walked over it about 3 days maybe 4 days and thought to myself “if i don’t pick this up it will be here forever” and so I did pick it up and took it to the school dumpster, and upon tossing it in i saw one maybe two black garbage bags full of material.  Yes… big pieces of material, some yards long. All textures, all types, all genres. I just dragged those bags out, slung them over my shoulder took them home and washed the entire lot of fabric….  dried and neatly counted out 100 yards (just of the big pieces) plus many scraps from someone’s cache who had made plenty of kids cloths. This was over 2 decades ago, and I have used them for quilt backs and quilt pieces right along with the fabrics that I picked up from the 8th street building where Poly Flinders had their cutters, also decades ago. The flowers-on-black theme for little girls prints was very popular, and I gobbled up their scraps like candy.

In truth I will likely never use all this fabric, but I keep making significant dents.  HaHa.  So from scraps, all kinds of scraps, textures, qualities, and sizes, comes this quilt.  I am debating whether to leave it square (96×96) and make a pillow sham, or add to each end.  Still thinking.  It is not perfect (I am not a real craftsman, more an idea person, so execution of a perfect quilt is not likely to happen in my lifetime, but I really do enjoy the designing part).

update: i made two more blocks to extend the equilt from square to rectangular…  i will rephotograph.