Friday, October 11, 2013

Thoughts on Workmanship

Here is a look at the beautiful stitches on the red tulip pieces.  This woman's workmanship was beautiful, and I don't find the white thread too distracting. At this time in history, a tiny whip stitch was usually used with white thread no matter what the color of the applique.
Small white whip stitching holds the red petal in position

The green fabric is just about gone, so it is hard to tell how the stitches actually looked. There are some whip stitches but there is other sewing with light green thread.  It seems like a different person sewed on the green; or made repairs in later years.   

Look at how the stems are folded over on top of the tulip.  This drives me nuts. Why didn't the maker slip the end under the flower? It would have looked so much nicer and would have been less trouble.
There is a lump at the base of each flower where the bulky stem was turned over.

See how the leaves were almost too big to fit in the spaces, so the maker stuck the ends under or over the stems to fit them in!  This gives an awkward look.  I will trim my leaves to a smaller size so they fit in each space, and give them points at both ends. Look at the photos above and below.
The base leaf on the left was laid over the stem. The leaf on the right barely touches the stem, this is more pleasing. 
The blocks are approximately 14 inches square. What I am seeing is that our skill level and tools we use in quilting today are so far superior to what women used years ago.  Our quilts are so much easier to make.  Also we have good light in our sewing areas and homes which even in the 1950's we didn't have.  

I don't mean to be too critical of this woman's work, it is a beautiful quilt. But the difference is in how far we have come in the quilting world. These little details make a big difference in the final appearance of the quilt.  I think I've been competing in judged shows too long.

At the time I am writing this post, I've actually appliqued 2 blocks and they look beautiful.  Next time, I'll show you the difference!



Anonymous said...

I think she did the stems that way to cover the three sharp points where the two leaves meet the flower petal.


annieQ said...

You are right. It's like the big cover up! Like putting a yoyo or a button on the center of a pieced 8 piece star.