Thursday, May 30, 2013

Vintage Friendship Garden

I was at a local quilt show recently and saw this stunning applique' quilt as an Opportunity quilt (aka raffle) offered by the Santa Rosa Quilt guild, which I used to belong to. I spent quite a bit of time admiring the balance, color and workmanship. Not only were the blocks beautifully created, but the machine quilting was handsome and well suited to the quilt. Wow!

When I looked closer I noticed each block had a name hand embroidered in white on white. Many of the names were quilters I had known more than 20 years ago when I was part of that guild. It was fun to 'see' so many friends, some now deceased, together in a quilt. Of course I bought a ticket.

The next week I was at the Santa Rosa Quilt Guild's website to read about upcoming programs. It was then that I discovered the back story on this quilt and found out one of my blocks was in it!

In 1991 I made a needle-turned applique' block as part of our guild's Friendship Block Exchange. The person receiving blocks got to choose the number of blocks, pieced or appliqued and the color scheme. Dorothy's blocks were inspired by Red and Green: An Applique Tradition.

Dorothy Ingham received her blocks and made the center medallion as well as several of the other blocks. Then they hibernated for awhile until one day Dorothy presented them to her guild and asked if they'd like to inherit them. Here's a quote from the website:

Dorothy contact Sharon Fry who presented the blocks at a Board Meeting where they were met with much admiration and enthusiasm, and the blocks came out of hibernation to become an “Opportunity Quilt”. Sharon received written permission from the author of the book, as well as the publisher, to use the block designs for the Opportunity Quilt. Phyllis Gallaway immediately went to work designing the swag borders while Sharon  assembled the blocks. Phyllis and Sharon hunted high and low for border fabrics to coordinate with the blocks made from yesteryear and made the purchases at Broadway Quilts in Sonoma. The quilt shop owner, Gery Rosemurgy, very generously donated the precious paisley for the backing.

Well now that I know this, it makes the quilt all the more fun and precious. I better buy more tickets!

To see other Red and Green quilts inspired by the book, visit this website.

No comments: