Doing my happy dance today! The reproduction of the Album Quilt from the Bloomington Historical Society is quilted, bound and finished. It was a huge push to get it done in time for the quilting presentation I will be giving from 11-6 on this Saturday at Heritage Days.
The top was finished in time for last year's festival, and then it 'rested'. Finally, last weekend as I was planning out this year's quilting presentation I decided to Git'r Done!
Monday morning the sewing machine came out and I got to work. Baptist Fans. Millions of them! lol Just like the original, but by machine instead of by hand. Don't you just love the texture they give to this quilt?
The great things I discovered about quilting Baptist Fans are: 1) you don't have to mark anything - just start in one corner with a quarter circle and then use the side of the presser foot to make parallel arcs. When I finished 12 arcs, I just made a new little quarter circle and started over. 2) The arcs make all the quilting lines bias at some point. This really helps with easing in fabric to make things lie flat. There are small puckers here and there, but the overall quilting texture hides them so well! And I refuse to go crazy if something isn't perfect. Life is too short!
Last night I put in the last stitches just before bedtime. Twenty-seven hours of quilting and 17 bobbins used. But it's done - and I couldn't be more excited. The original is so fragile, so it will be so nice to have a hands-on quilt that people can touch and see while I share information that I have gathered about the original quilt and the Native American women who made it back in 1893.
My family teases me that I'm becoming a celebrity. lol I gave the initial presentation about the quilt last July at the Bloomington Museum, and now have been asked to make a couple more presentations:
Saturday, Sept. 20th at Bloomington MN Heritage Days 11-6 near the Historical Society tent.
Sunday, Oct. 19th at the Pond Dakota Mission, Blooomington MN 2pm.
Next April at the local DAR chapter meeting. TBD
I do hope that the 1893 Album quilt becomes more well known, and the stories of the women whose names appear on it can once again come alive.
A small book about the 1893 Album Quilt will be available at the presentations for $6, and by mail for $8 (includes postage within the US.)