Sunday, April 6, 2014
When I make a reproduction quilt, I do my homework. I go through books, pouring over color pictures of quilts from the intended time period. I read again which fabrics were produced then. I choose blocks quilters of the time might easily have chosen. I choose my setting and backing based on history.
I want my reproduction quilts to look like old quilts. I want them to look like antiques from across the room. Close up, the viewer will see the machine quilting, and hopefully the label or inked signature and date on the back. There might even be a piece of fabric from our time period hiding in with the repros. (For quite a long time I used the fabrics printed with the year 2000. Sadly I'm about out of those.)
Those two blocks above show why this is not a true reproduction. The brown one on the left has fabrics that replicate those from the 1840s-1860s. The blue one on right has fabrics imitating those from the 1890s-1900. Even though I've seen quilts that contain scraps from several decades together, they would probably not be quite like this. Also, the set is a fabric from a Civil War line. Usually, if the blocks span a wide range of time, the setting fabric is from the newest time, not the oldest.
So this kind of quilt is more like historical fiction than history. There's nothing wrong with that! I like the look of it, it was fun to make, and I did use up a few strips.
I used to read a lot of historical fiction. The best of it can make you feel like you really lived long ago.
Here's the pattern for Antique Tile. This makes a 12 in. finished block.
For each block, I chose three colors--the main color, the light, and the corner color. For the main color, I used three prints in that color. In the block above, the main color is indigo blue. The center square, the small squares, and the outside rectangles are each a different print of indigo blue (the center might look gray in this picture, but it's really blue.) The light rectangles in my blocks are mostly shirting fabrics. The corner color is a contrast to the main color.
1 center square in the main color, print #1, 4.5 in x 4.5 in.
4 light rectangles, 2.5 in. x 4.5 in.
4 main color squares, print #2, 2.5 in. x 2.5 in.
4 main color rectangles, print #3, 2.5 in. x 4.5 in.
4 corner color rectangles, 2.5 in. x 4.5 in.
4 corner color squares, 2.5 in. x 2.5 in.
Here's how I sewed them together. You could also sew them in strips, top to bottom.
I made the block like a nine patch.
First I sewed the light and dark rectangles together. There are 4 sets of these.
Now all the sections were sewn, so I assembled them into a nine patch. Really easy.
If you're wondering why it's still in 3 pieces, it's because that's how I'm going to quilt it. I managed to get it layered and spray basted yesterday. Maybe I'll get started on the quilting today.
May all your days be pieceful.