The Cottage Orné Quilt

The Cottage Orné Quilt
Click the picture to visit my other blog

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Thanksgiving Greetings


I usually try and find a beautiful American quilt to greet you on this day!  However, because I'm under the influence of my visit to Stoke on Trent, which I have yet to tell you about, I am sending you instead, a Turkey platter made in that city!


This beauty was made by Spode who manufactured in it's vast factory in Stoke from 1774 to 2008, when it finally closed.  The brand was subsequently purchased by Portmeirion, who continue to make Spode branded wares at their own factory in Stoke.

A sad and familiar tale, but at least the name continues albeit in a somewhat diminished form!

 

Greetings from Wales to all 

Across the Pond on this 

Thanksgiving Day!



Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Big Day for EB!

I am still preparing the next Stoke on Trent post, but in the meantime I have to share with you these pictures of Emma with the Duchess!  Better publicity you could not buy?




No prizes for guessing what the Duchess is asking in the last picture?

It's all in aid of charity of course!  Here is the link to the story if you would like to follow it?

Of course the EB potty people are very eager to get their hands on some of these, but they won't be out until next March. With Christmas coming, followed by the special sale runs, the factory will be working at full capacity now.  So everyone will have to be patient, but it really is the thrill of the chase.  Once they have them it won't be long before they will be selling them on eBay - I have seen it all before.

I love this pattern -



I would choose a six pint jug!  However, I am pretty sure that this won't be going into general production - the big teapots are probably either gifts or raffle prizes?  Indeed, the Duchess might be taking one home with her?


Thursday, 13 November 2014

A little break!

I have been doing a bit of gadding about!  Sharon and I have been staying in a Facebook friend's little house in Derbyshire for a few days!


It was quite delightful and a lovely base for visiting some favourite places.

On the way we visited the Bicester shopping outlet and did some Christmas shopping and this was the hall on our arrival!


It got much fuller than this -  this was the rear view of the cab on the way home!


Well where to start?  We packed so much into those few days!  Of course as both of us are potaholics we made two visits to Stoke on Trent, but on the middle day we visited Chatsworth to take in a bit of culture!


This is the view of the Painted Hall where the staff were beginning to put up the Christmas decorations!  They were full of apologies for the disruption but it was interesting to see the process in a stately home.  We weren't that impressed with the decorations which we thought were more suitable for a department store and didn't think that they did justice to their sumptuous surroundings!

Chatsworth is a stunning house and we had a beautiful day to see it all -




The above picture is a view of the golden windows, not yellow paint but real gold leaf!  When I visited a few years ago the whole house was shrouded in plastic as it was being renewed.



Next time I will tell you all about our visit to Stoke on Trent and the pots we bought and saw!

Till then, here is a taster -


Thank you Sharon for taking the pictures!

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Lucious stitching!

Sometimes you see something that is so wonderful that you simply have to share!

This is a detail of a portrait of Catherine Carey, Countess of Nottingham, who was a very close friend and confidant of Elizabeth I.


The detail in this portrait by Robert Peake is wonderful and you can click this link and zoom in to examine it more thoroughly.


Because the dress was so spectacular, it was thought for a while, that it was a portrait of Elizabeth herself, but apparently it isn't!  They were such good friends that Elizabeth lent her the dress for the portrait!  However, there is some doubt about Catherine's parentage.  Here is what Wikipedia says -

Catherine Carey was born in about 1524, the daughter of Sir William Carey of Aldenham in Hertfordshire, Gentleman of the Privy Chamber and Esquire of the Body to Henry VIII, and his wife Mary Boleyn, who had once been a mistress of the king. Catherine was Elizabeth I's first cousin. Some contemporaries also asserted that Catherine was an illegitimate child of Henry VIII which would make her Elizabeth's half sister. Although this was never acknowledged by the King, Catherine was given deference by the Court as she aged and came to resemble Henry.

No wonder Elizabeth lent her dresses?


Monday, 13 October 2014

New Project


Sorry about the teaser the other week!  It is so easy to press a wrong button on Blogger and I didn't realise I had until I got comments!

I got bored trying to finish things and decided that as I enjoyed working the Cottage Orné quilt so much, I would do another in the same vein.  I think this one will work out a bit smaller, only about 40 blocks and I am using a stronger colour palette.





All the blocks are taken from Georgian quilts.  Many are the same as in the Cottage Orné, which was based on the Sundial Coverlet, but there are different ones too, some I have come across since and wanted to try out!

I am using mostly Liberty Lawn fabrics because some of the pieces are so small that the fabric has to be quite thin but strong and these fabrics are certainly that.  I never ceased to be amazed at the sheer variety of patterns produced by Liberty.  You only have to look on eBay to get a inkling but the range is even bigger than appears there.  I have been collecting them for decades, so quite a lot of what I am using is vintage, but I am still buying bits on line.  I like to find the quirky stuff, because it can be cut into and makes interesting effects within a block.

Apart from the house at the centre, all the blocks measure 12 centimetres, because Georgian patchwork blocks  were small and this seems a good compromise size.   It is also easily divided by two, three and four which helps when drafting the patterns.

I am using my usual method of selection, getting a wide collection of fabrics together that seem to mix well.  Then I don't have to worry too much when choosing for individual blocks as I know that they will blend together whatever I choose!

I have done 20 blocks so far, so quite a way to go!


 


Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Eye on Elegance Exhibition, DAR Museum, Washington DC

Sorry about the last post, I was going to share a new project with you and accidentally pressed the "publish" button!  It certainly brought in more comments than I usually get, so maybe I should try a teaser more often?

I will return to it soon, but first of all I wanted to tell you about a new exhibition which is now open in Washington DC.  For those of us who can't get to see it there is an online exhibit and an excellent video - here is the link

I am particularly interested in early American quilts because they have such a strong link to British quilts.  Many have the same format as our frame quilts and use blocks found on our Georgian quilts.  This quilt being a prime example -


It has such a strong and simple form and I can see it made up in various ways.  It could be in plain vibrant colours and be Amish?  Or made in dark Welsh wool and be Welsh?   However, here it is in beautiful chintz, very carefully chosen and probably very expensive? The quilting on it is absolutely breathtaking, do look at the video on piecing which shows it in detail.  Of course if it was Welsh it would have different quilting, equally sumptuous but quite distinctive, full of spirals, fans and other wonderful Welsh patterning! Sorry couldn't resist getting that in!

This really is what the exhibition to about, it is demonstrating to us with wonderful examples, the trouble and expense women went to in the 18th and early 19th century, to make masterpiece quilts using high quality fabrics.  This is  something dear to my heart, collecting really good fabrics and using them imaginatively!
 
I do wish I could visit and drool over these wonderful quilts!
Go if you possibly can!

Here I must give this museum full credit for catering for those of us you can't visit in person.  Not often I praise a museum on this page!