Thursday, April 25, 2019

Off the Beaten Path



If you read my last post, than you know that I have been on a bit of a fabric buying strike, but allowed myself to indulge in buying some thrifted men's shirts, (results of which to date can be found on that post as well). 

Well... I also allowed myself to buy some vintage grain sack fabric found at a local Mennonite quilt sale. I figured it was fair game, as it isn't new and I fell hard for its quiet beauty, flaws, stains and all. 

And on a quick side note... may I say many thanks to those that did read my last post and a special thanks to those that took the time to leave a comment. I know much time can go from one post to another, (although not this time) and everyone's kindness is always so very much appreciated!  


I got several pieces of this incredibly soft grain sack fabric that has the most amazing drape. Old dirt and mildew stains speckle the cloth which I find lovely. (The fabrics all appeared to have been washed before selling, with no evidence of active mold or mildew. However, I still gave everything a thorough cleaning in very hot water and dried on a long high heat once home as well. I want those lovely stains to remain, but also wanted to ensure that no active spores were still present.)

Now that I hopefully peeked your interest, I regret to say that I am still contemplating what to do with the above fabrics, so nothing more to show you there. And I might as well be up front now, (after my last post set the bar a bit high) just ONE quilt to show this time, but I think it's a good one!

Ok, back to the fabrics, and eventually that one quilt...

I also got a stack of these low volume beauties...


I am serious as can be when I tell you that their weave, their colors, their typography... 
all make my heart speed up and my mouth literally starts to salivate. 
Why on earth I do not know... it's not like I want to eat them.
(Or do I?) 

No, I'd much rather sew with them...


Vintage grain sacks
Freehand cut, machine pieced, hand quilted
27.5" x 21"


Out of all the quilts I've ever made I think this was my favorite one to quilt. 


All the hand quilting was done in a VERY freeform manner. 


No planning, no marking, just stitching. 
It was, in a word, LIBERATING! 


Some of the material was very gauzy and light weight, so I decided to line the whole quilt with a piece of muslin fabric layered between the top and the batting, in order to give it better stability. This also came in handy when I decided to mend two small holes found in one of the fabric pieces. I just hand stitched the edges, and left the hole openings be, allowing the muslin lining to peak thru. You can see a better close up in that photo at the very top of this post.

Oh, and here's a little tid bit... 
Have you noticed that little slice of fabric that says Baltimore? 
It was part of the address found on one of the grain sacks.
I put that in as an ode to where I was born.


I backed the quilt with a natural unbleached muslin and for the binding I used a gauzy vintage fabric that I got at the same sale. Then I washed it to bring out all that delicious, crinkled, quilt texture. 


Quilt is currently for sale in my Etsy shop and can be found here.

Thanks for stopping by.

xo





20 comments:

gigi said...

So wonderful!

Not a blogger! said...

Victoria, this is just beautiful and special on so many levels! And it's time for me to thank you for your tutorial on facings...I've been using it and am so happy with it and I didn't say thanks!

Phyllis in Iowa said...

This is a perfect quilt. I admire your creativity.

I grew up on a small Iowa farm and wore feed sack clothing, dried dishes with feed sack towels and used straw filled feed sacks for a bag swing. My mom saved the chain stitched thread and wrapped it into little balls.

Did you know that seed corn sacks were woven using heavier thread?

רזיה בן גוריון said...

so beautiful, even delicious and inspiring. how do you finish a quilt so fast? this is amazing, your work is inspiring, thank you.

lorrwill said...

Okay this little quilt made me audibly gasp because I love the colors and the texture of the quilting so much.

And, heck yes I spotted Baltimore. My late father was born there, too!

Jacqueline said...

Cotton candy, light as a feather, as beautiful as a morning sunrise in the fog.

Anne said...

This is such a lovely quilt! I appreciate the description of the process you used to make it; I'd love to try something similar at some point. Thanks!

Vickie Wheatley said...

You continue to change and grow as an artist. Your work continues to inspire me. I know what you mean about almost wanting to eat the fabric! Thank you for sharing your journey and your skills.

The Inside Stori said...

Yet again I'm almost dumb struck as I gobble up every word and visual in this post......your work is perfection!

Anorina Morris said...

Oh that texture! What a beautiful (and calming) quilt.

patty a. said...

The quilt is gorgeous! The soft colors with all that quilting is so yummy. I made a quilt out of feed sacks for someone a couple years ago. It was not nearly as pretty as yours, but the buyer was happy with it. I will try and find your email and send you pics.

Nifty Quilts said...

This fabric would make my mouth water too! And only you would know how to bring out its subtle beauty. I think this is my very favorite of yours, although I always feel that way about your latest. You really have something wonderful here, especially with the "liberated" quilting. That pile of fabrics is destined for greatness in your hands. Also, I really like the idea of adding a bit of fabric behind the fragile pieces. I've wondered about doing that with some of my delicate vintage finds.

Diane J. Evans said...

Gorgeous! But wouldn't you want to keep your ode to Baltimore? This is truly a labor of vintage love.

Diane

Victoria said...

Many thanks for all your kind comments!

Margie West said...

Such a great idea! Beautiful!! Margie/NY

chris said...

Great photographs, I like your attention to detail and the way you retouch your photos!

Irina said...

Amazing!!

JeanneMc said...

This is the best thing I've seen in a long long time. Fantastic!!

Bohemian said...

OMG I LOVE those Old Grain Sack Fabrics! And that Quilt is Magnificent!

Victoria said...

Belated thanks for your kind comments!