Traveling is a good time to get inspiration. Last weekend we went to Jackson for the Native Sons event, Discovery of Gold. I enjoy visiting these small towns in the boonies of California. I always find something interesting.
I thought the tile at one closed storefront would make an interesting row quilt – or the start of a row quilt. Look at the different elements between the ‘blocks’. I wonder if they relate to the shop’s original owner or wares?
This trip, I spent a lot of time on my own because DH had a lot of meetings crammed into one day. Jackson has quite a few ‘antique’ shops. Some are more curated than others. I wanted to visit a quilt shop, but the closest one was 40 minutes away in Placerville and I wasn’t up for the drive. It was fun to wander around Jackson. I found a few gifts, especially a teapot I have been looking for for years.
As I wandered around, my thoughts around Women’s Work and its value (or lack of monetary value) were rekindled. The cushion above had a very depressing price tag on it. I blame Walmart and the Dollar Store, fast fashion and always wanting a deal. $9.95! I couldn’t really take it in, though this kind of thing is why I don’t have a quilt business.
Really, I kept seeing a lot of quilts and quilt related items. I also saw a lot of crochet, but I can’t take photos of everything.
One thing I noticed was a lot of quilts. Not art quilts or high quality quilts, but a noticeable number of utilitarian quilts. After seeing the first few, I started photographing them and thinking about Women’s Work again. I’ll try to stay off of my soapbox, but the prices and the cavalier way in which most of them were displayed makes me wonder again about the value of women’s work. I also can’t help wondering if my work will end up in antique-thrift-junk shops. If the YM doesn’t want my quilts, I hope my nieces and nephews will divvy them up.
Someone clearly sews in one of the shops as there were a number of sewn items for sale, including bowl cozies ($8). You’d have to have a well oiled production line going to make it worth selling these for $8. It is, however, a great way to justify making stuff. I am not sure I would be satisfied making hundreds of bowl cozies, but to each his/her own.
I enjoyed the simplicity of many of the quilt designs I saw. One of my favorites was a yellow pinwheel quilt. I made a basket quilt with a yellow background once, called Cheerful Baskets, so I have a fondness for certain tints of yellow. The simplicity of this quilt really grabbed me. I think those blocks are about 5 inches, but possibly four inches since they are a 4 patch. The sashing gives the pinwheels space to breathe. The eye can see each pinwheel clearly.
I saw some cushions made with a crazy quilt design that were in bad condition, but still pretty. I wonder if they could have been cut from a crazy quilt?
Someone had the clever idea to reupholster a chair with a Dresden Plate. I am not a fan of that type of oak furniture, but I think the seat looks cool.
I saw this not in an antique-junk-thrift shop, but a higher end store that takes some stuff from antique-junk-thrift shops and upcycles it. There was only one of these chairs, but it might make a nice start to a collection of them in different woods and styles. The Dresden Plate could unify them.
There was a sweet child looking quilt that reminded me of the Laura Ashley quilt I made for a friend a million years ago when there was a Laura Ashley store in downtown San Francisco. I had just started quiltmaking then and found an early charm pack there. Charm packs as a concept didn’t exist as they do now, so it was really novel to find a pack of pre-cut squares.
The quilt isn’t exactly like mine, but it does remind me of the one I made.
The embroidery is some kind of vine or edge stitch. I like it. It adds interest to the simple design of the quilt, as do the flowers in the fabric. They looked like they were painted on, but I think it was just the printing process of the fabric used.
That violet (or lavender) with the yellow is a good combination.
There was also, what I think was, a yo-yo quilt. It looked different than other yo-yo quilts I have seen. It could be that the gathered side was face down in the display and I couldn’t see them. It is possible that people don’t know that yo-yos are mostly displayed/used with the gathered side up. On the other hand, this could be a completely different type of quilt or a yo-yo variation.
I also saw, what looked like, a Welsh-style quilt. Of course, it could be a regular whole cloth quilt using a color similar to those used in Welsh whole cloth quilts. I couldn’t see much more than the picture shows, though I did take another photo from farther away that shows a little more of the design. The vines and leaves are really nice.
It is clear that this quilt has been washed, if not used, but it looked to be in good condition.
I also saw a Basket quilt top. Again, this quilt has lavender. I wonder if that was a popular color in a certain era? 1930s? I know that a lot of 1930s reproduction fabric lines include a lavender colorway. One of the nice things about this design is how some of the baskets fade into the background. It could be from fading or it could have been designed that way. No way to tell.
I really like basket block quilts and have only made one. So many designs so little time!
This Quarter Square Triangle quilt is sewn together in a interesting manner. I am not sure if the quilt was pieced and then embellished with a blanket-type stitch or if it was sewn together with the blanket-type stitch. I can see both types of stitching on the detail photo. The scraps used in this quilt are quite bright and cheerful. It might be a newer quilt without fading or it is older and well taken care of.
Finally, this is what is going to happen to all of my fabric when I die.
I don’t know that there are definitely 6 yards in there as I didn’t open the package. I do know that there were multiple similar packets of fabric. The fabric isn’t to my taste, but if you want some of it go to Jackson and visit Antiques On Main,1 Main St, Jackson, CA 95642. There are multiple vendors with a lot of different stuff. The one in the front on the right side of the aisle is where the fabric was.
One lesson? Label your quilts. Even stitch lettering with your name and the year are better than ‘artist unknown’.