Sunday, February 17, 2013

And You Thought Your UFOs Were Old

I've pulled out a UFO to finish.  This project has been in my stash for several years, I bought 12 of these waterlily applique and embroidery blocks for $6.00, maybe ten years ago.  A couple of the blocks have some of the stamped applique pieces basted down, but most of the stamped blocks are bare and I have the corresponding stamped applique pieces for all of the blocks.

The appliques have a stamp that says the kit was copyrighted by the Rainbow Quilt Block Co. in 1932, 81 years ago.

On one block the applique has been completed, and a meticulous buttonhole stitch has been applied to the edges.

The green thread from the outline embroidery has been left hanging in a tantalizing way.  Who started this kit, and why was it abandoned?  Maybe finishing this kit will lead me to some clues as to the story of this project.  Maybe completing this old UFO will allow some needle worker's spirit to rest a bit more peacefully.

I began with the important task of getting the right supplies.  All the pieces are in good shape, though some of the blocks have "beauty spots," stains of unknown origin.  At one point I washed one of the stamped blocks in oxyclean to see how much of the staining will come out with a good wash, and it came out nice and white, if not totally spotless.

When the blocks are done, I've got a drawer full of 30s fabrics I want to use to make complimentary pieced blocks for the finished quilt.  That's my plan anyway. 


Brenda said...

very fun. It's interesting how applique and embroidery were combined here. are the applique edges turned under or just buttonhole stitched?

sophie said...

It sounds like a marvelous plan. I look forward to watching your progress.

beth said...

This will be so beautiful! Can't wait.

DebbyMc said...

I, too, have one if those 30s kits in my closet. It has a zillion little leaf-shaped pieces stamped on those wonderful depression-era colors. A dear quilting friend gave it to me years ago... I wonder if she looks down from heaven and thinks I've forgotten about it... Might be fun to dedicate a season or two to making it... Kudos to you for
getting yours out. I agree: some quilter's spirit will rest more easily and cheer you on as you work :)

Kay said...

This is going to be beautiful! I love what you say about the stitcher's spirit. I feel the same way about the old UFO blocks I'm working on now. Never liked them originally, but now I find them touching.

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