Saturday, April 25, 2015

May Day

Then and Now....a new pattern company with my business partner Mary Robbins from Bozeman, MT...will feature both traditional and contemporary quilt patterns using Dargate fabrics. We have started with the Treasury line. Two of my designs (I am very much Then) have made it to the photographer. Here is my first offering...May Day. Patterns will be available thru ReproductionFabrics.com (retail and wholesale) late May.




Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Furnishing Goods

Today we might call these fabrics 'decorator designs'. The scale is larger and the elements often more exuberant. Merchant ledgers of the 18th and 19th Century referred to these fabrics as Furnishing Goods. The large printed garlands in Dargate Treasury from Andover Fabrics are a good example of c. 1830 Furnishing goods.
Ground colors popular 1815-1835 were white, tea dyed, yellow and light blue. These grounds were generally solids. The combination of a finely printed ground with block printed florals began with the development of steel mills in the mid 1830s. Often the small mill engraving backgrounds were printed separately and used as backings for quilts.
 
The tan color above is the document coloration. The pattern however, is a bit smaller than the original for two reasons. Today's goods offer 4 complete repeats of the large garland across the fabric. Five of the smaller design. In the original piece...the two different garlands are so close together some elements actually touch.  I wanted enough space between the two floral garlands to be able to cut/sew each design separately. 
 
Ribbons, an important fashion accessory, woven in the early 19th century often used a warp of one color with a different color of weft. In fabrics this would be called shot colors or chambrays. I am using several of these Chambrays by Andover Fabrics in quilts I am designing for the Dargate Treasury line. The Linen color is subtle and supportive while the Coral and Plum add a sparkle.
Dargate Treasury fabrics will be available late April and my quilt patterns by mid May on my website, Reproduction Fabrics.com.
 
 

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Circle Skirts are Popular!

If circle skirts are popular again, then half circle skirt aprons must be twice as popular. After all, doesn't one circle skirt equal two half circle skirt aprons?
    Circle skirts are the inspiration for the Half Circle Skirt Apron pattern. The little skirts with the geometric stripes showing up in the store windows and the Sunday newspaper ads are catching my attention and, maybe, yours too. But, you don't have to buy a circle skirt and cut it in half to get a half circle skirt apron. You can just make one from Margo's new fabric line, Dargate Treasury from Andover Fabrics available in early May. The floral stripes are perfect. My pattern includes two versions, the shorter "cocktail" length and the longer "cook" length. The pattern and kit will be available in mid-May at www.ReproductionFabrics.com and, if you are at Spring Quilt Market in Minneapolis, you might see Margo modeling it at her Schoolhouse presentation. And maybe she will twirl (circle skirts are known to cause this impulse) and you will see the floral stripes swirl.

If you think that the Half Circle Skirt Apron is cute in the aqua color way of the Dargate Treasury floral stripes (A7791T) and cream coordinate (A7795TL), imagine a full circle skirt. It will be twice as cute. After all, don't two half circle skirt aprons equal one circle skirt? Oh, I'm getting weary of the math.