Monday, November 22, 2010

Remembering Grant and the 1870s

By now you all know about my Eagle Motif Decade by Decade Project (if not scroll down through my old blogs and you’ll find the information about it). I have been commissioning other quilt artists and /or historians to create 24” x 24” wallhangings that have an eagle motif in them and reflect a certain decade.

Side note: The 1980s and the 1830s (and any decade before 1830s) are still open, if anyone is interested in creating one of these wallhangings for me.

Back to business……. I wasn’t going to do one of these wallhangings myself – then I was – then I wasn’t, but then I decided I really should – how can I expect someone else to do something I would not do myself. I waited until most of the decades were spoken for before I made a choice. I choose the 1870s and I choose to honor President U.S. Grant with my eagle motif piece.

My inspiration for the piece came from a trip we took to Galena, Illinois this summer for my family reunion – my brothers and their families drove in from various parts of Iowa and Illinois. Beautiful town Galena, Illinois – someone should write a time travel book about it because there are still spots in that town that haven’t changed since the time Grant walked the streets there. Grant’s home still exists - it is a historic site and if you decide to visit Galena a must-see on your trip to this neat city.

Most of my fabric came from and Hancocks of Paducah online stores. Many of the fabrics used were from the Old Glory line – lots of fat quarters. This piece also utilizes some antique textiles and buttons (antique and new). I used fabric photo transfer sheets for the computer from Joann’s. The piece is hand-quilted and hand-pieced.

Here is my tribute to the 1870s and my eagle motif wallhanging “Remembering Grant:”

The Eagle

Left Upper Corner

Right Upper Corner

Left Lower Corner

Lower Right Corner

Centennial Side Left Side Piece

Chicago Fire Right Side Piece

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Art Quilt with a Historical Twist

I have been a traditional quilter (hand piecer - hand quilter) since 1985 when I took my first class at our local community center - my son was two and I was looking for a creative outlet and a way to meet other moms. I became hooked on quilting the first night of class -- the teacher even said -- you love this don't you? I did and still do. I put away my oil paints and brushes and have never looked back.

I never thought I would venture into the art quilt arena though, but I have always been drawn to pictorial quilts because they tell stories. I decided in 2010 to try my hand at creating an art quilt, but I knew the wall hanging would have to tell a story, incorporate my love of history, and of course it would need to have an eagle motif on it.

My Defining Moment Art Quilt Series was born.

My definition of a defining moment is a point at which the essential nature or character of a person is revealed or identified and because of this moment, event, or discovery their life is changed forever.

This piece entitled "The Eagle: Walter Carlin Parks, Jr." is the first wall hanging in my series. It honors my dad whose defining moment, like so many others of his generation, was WWII. If you want to know the whole story about my father go to my web site:, go to the community by community section, scroll down to Atkinson, click on "Earning the Eagle's Badge," and you'll find my dad's story is there.

The aircraft carrier on fire (in the Storm at Sea quilt pattern) was my dad's ship the St. Lo.
It was hit by enemy fire and sank in the Battle of Leyte Gulf.

A "not so" final word about art quilts.....
I love the "no rules" aspect of art quilts - you can use ANYTHING in them from buttons to string to fabric to thread to ribbons to photographs (the list is endless) and it frees you up to create and tell a story the way you want to.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Hoffman 2011 Quilt Challenge

"This year the Hoffman Challenge is celebrating its 23rd Anniversary. The Challenge started with 94 enthusiastic quilters, and in some years, the number of entries has grown to more than 700. In addition to the three quilt categories (pieced, appliqué and mixed technique), new categories include clothing (wearable art), accessories, and dolls."

If you are interested in participating in this challenge, here is the web site with all the information you will need to know:

If you'd like a glimpse at 2011 fabric and coordinating fabrics to be used on this challenge, they can also be found on this page. Each one is a beauty and perfect for a Broderie Perse quilt even if you decide not to participate in the contest.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Quilt Kit Identification – Rosie Werner’s Quilt Kit Research Web Site

Cinderella Youth Quilt Kit
LeeWards - Elgin, Illinois
Mail Order Catalog

Researcher, lecturer, and collector Rosie Werner is an independent quilt historian who specializes in identifying 20th Century Quilt Designs that were sold as kits. She established her web site “Quilt Kit Identification” to help us date and identify appliqué, crib, cross-stitch, embroidered, and pieced quilts that were sold through art needle company retail stores and mail catalogs.

Her documentation includes:

Photo or Drawing of the Quilt
Name and Number of the design
Company or Designer
Materials in Kit
Quilting Designs
Original Price

Extras Include:
· Stories Behind the Quilt Kit Companies and Designers
· Reading List

This is a subscription-based web site.

For more information contact:

Rosie Werner
P.O. Box 18
Dundas, Minnesota 55019

Web Site:


Telephone: 507-645-7995

Cell: 507-649-0171