Embroidery? – Patchwork? – Try Them All!


The picture of the gentleman in the last post is my Father, Garrett Raterink, as a young man.

The picture of the quilt is Wurzburg kit quilt No. 3579 Bunnies. I have a top finished, layers basted together and ready to quilt but at the time I made it I didn't have any of the antique fabrics originally used and there weren't any reproduction fabrics available so I never finished it because I just couldn't stand the fabric choices I'd made. The bunnies are bright pink as I remember. Yikes! What was I thinking. I'll see if I can find it tomorrow and take a picture to show you what I mean.

I don't know when I first learned what a quilt was. Quilts, quilting and quilters have been part of my life for as long as I can remember.

Growing up I always in awe of the wonderful, endearing things my Father would bring out from what seemed like magical places. When I wanted a new dress for my baby doll he'd disappear for a few minutes....

only to return with something beautiful like this pink polka dot creation complete with organdy slip and lace trimmed bonnet.

As I grew older and learned to sew, I mentioned I was wondering what to use for hair on a doll I wanted to make.

Envelopes filled with curly and braided mohair in variety of colors appeared....

from a neatly labeled drawer like these. There was tiny rick rack, miniature buttons or a selection of little embroidered appliqués for me to choose from too. Daddy always had something for me to work with and a story about where each thing came from and what it was used for would follow.

When I thought I wanted to make my first quilt, Daddy let me choose a set of little rabbit quilt blocks from a box filled with envelopes stacked, labeled and filled with sets of quilt blocks ready for embroidery.
Inside my envelope were skeins of cotton and rayon embroidery floss to stitch the blocks with. Before long I had them finished. Some of my stitches are pretty big (toe nail catchers actually) but I thought they were perfect. My favorites were the ones with polka dots on the clothes. No surprise there!

I put the quilt together with alternating muslin rectangles and tied it with yarn. I've often thought of taking it all apart to do over again but can't quite make myself do it.
If you'd like to stitch the Little Bunnies, the pattern is available in the Online Store.

I must have been about 12 or 13 when I thought I wanted to make my first patchwork quilt. Special metal dies were brought out, calico fabrics were layered, cut and stacked in neat little piles ready for me to sew.

This was the ambitious project I'd chosen! What was I thinking?

I picked out red prints for the fan blades, a red solid fabric for the handle and a white background. They were small blocks and I got bored after making just a few of them. The whole project was put in a box, taken up to the attic and sadly I have no idea what happened to it. The quilt was Wurzburg No. 4009 Grandmother's Fan.

Enough storytelling for tonight --- I posted another Midget Block for you and I'm going to add the Grandmother's Fan and bunny quilts to the My Life in Stitches pages.

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