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A Vintage UFO

A Vintage UFO

Old 05-15-2017, 09:02 AM
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Default A Vintage UFO

Over the weekend we went to a family wedding. My SIL's sister approached me, knowing my interest in quilts, and offered me a quilt top that had turned up in the family things after her father's recent passing at the age of 95. Nobody seems to know who made it, but it could be from either side of their family (Their mother had died earlier at age 98 and definitely had quilters in her family). The woman who gave it to me had tried to donate it to her local quilt guild, but nobody responded to her email. She said she didn't find it all that attractive and wanted to find a home for it. I am pleased to have it because, although I agree that it's not the most lovely design, it reminds me of the utilitarian work my grandmother did, of which I have none. Here are some pictures - sorry not good in the tight space with morning light streaming in.

I have been studying the fabrics and concluded that it may date to the 1950's because a large number of them are similar to things that were around in my childhood. Some are quite old, including a few feedsack prints and others that are probably 1930's and 40's, which would be consistent with the generation of the grandparents of my SIL, who would have had many grandchildren by the mid-1950's. Many of the 7" squares were cut from used clothes because you can see the crease from a hem and the stitches that held it up, as well as random seams here and there. The workmanship is not good, with some seams under 1/8" inch and quite a lot of puckering. To get things squared up and the grain straight, the border was torn in strips. It's machine pieced at about 8 stitches per inch. It's 99X 78". It might have been someone's first attempt or just the work of someone who was in a big hurry. Still, I find the overall effect charming and I may see what I can do to turn it into a quilt.
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Old 05-15-2017, 09:34 AM
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Don't you just love those old quilts? Back in the day the batting was so thick and the quilts were tied. This allowed for all those little flaws to disappear.
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Old 05-15-2017, 09:36 AM
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Maybe you can do something about the very skimpy seams - and then tie it.

It looks like something my Grandma B. would have made. She was prolific - she did allow generous seam allowances, though.
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Old 05-15-2017, 09:42 AM
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What a wonderful piece of history. I have a quilt my sister bought at thrift store or something. It is double knit polyester - think women's pants suits from 1972. It is not "pretty" but I like it because I imagine an elderly lady piecing it from scraps or old pants suits.
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Old 05-15-2017, 10:11 AM
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What an interesting story. It is surprising no one in the family want it.
Seems many people do not appreciate the effort that went into a quilt like that.
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Old 05-15-2017, 11:17 AM
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you can make it fine, the quilting will disguise the corners
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Old 05-15-2017, 01:35 PM
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I was just going to say it would look great tied!! nice find!!
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Old 05-15-2017, 01:41 PM
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*** I am soooo glad she did not put it in the garbage. I like it. Reminds me of my childhood quilts.
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Old 05-15-2017, 05:11 PM
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I've received wonderful old tops like that and had fun quilting them. My preference is to machine quilt it fairly densely so that the quilting holds those skimpy seams together. If you get a tuck or two, that's okay - at least it will be a quilt and not an unloved top. Please post when you get it done.
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Old 05-15-2017, 06:24 PM
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I think that the sister-in-law who gave it to you and the other relatives who didn't want it will be surprised at how nice it will look when it is finished. Enjoy the process!
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