Friday, July 29, 2022

Flower Friday: July 29. 2022

 Happy Flower Friday!

Alice shared a photo of a garden visitor!
Alice said this fox visits her garden everyday.  He stands on his hindlegs to get a drink of water from her birdbath!!!  😀

There's a young man who lives down the street who is a wonderful gardener.  This year he has a flower in his garden that stopped me in my tracks.  It was a fluffy orb of yellow and he said he got a pack of seeds that was sunflower varieties and he had no idea what kind of sunflower it was!  So of course I did some research!  I couldn't get a photo of it decently (too sunny at the time) but I found this one online to show you:

It's called a Teddy Bear Sunflower  and if you are not interested in the towering version that my neighbor has, you might be interested in the dwarf variety.

If you have had this plant in your garden, please let me know how it did for you!

That's it for today!  Have a safe and happy weekend!

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Greetings from the Garden!


Happy Thursday!

We all seem to be having garden challenges these days.  I hadn't been working in the back yard for weeks because we had a mama catbird scolding me every time I was out back.  I like catbirds, I think they are fun and I love their call.  But this Mama and her baby were about as loud and vocal as a bird can get.  We had a cardinal family living in the Weigelia bush and they never made a peep when I was out.  Anyway, the baby is grown-up and I feel better about working in the back yard.

Fun Fact:  The catbird is not listed as a "state bird" anywhere in the U.S.  It isn't given this honor in Canada either.  

According to Wikipedia, the Northern Cardinal is the state bird for 7 states, including W. Virginia, Virginia, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, North Carolina, Kentucky

The butterflies are finally back and even if there aren't many, it's good to see them.  I'm sure you've all heard that the monarch butterfly is now considered endangered.

The roses have survived the July attack of the Japanese Beetles.  Although we haven't had much rain, the soaker hoses have encouraged another recent bloom of my coral roses.  I just stood here inhaling their lovely fragrance!

My favorite plant in the garden is the perennial hibiscus!  Just as most of the plants are beginning to look sunburnt and faded, the hibiscus begins to bloom.  If my garden was bigger, I'd have more of these lovelies!

What's happening in your garden?  Share what's happening in your neck of the woods by emailing

Have a safe and happy day!

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Day off

 Happy Wednesday!

I'm taking a day off today because I have so many things to do and not enough time to do it all.  

I'll be back tomorrow!

Thanks for your patience and have a safe and happy day!

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

Tuesday's This and That: July 26, 2022

 Happy Tuesday!

I think I am going to name Sue our roving reporter.  She always sends me the most interesting things!  So to start us off... how about a talk about scrap quilts?

Sue sent this wonderful video about scrap quilts!
Yes, I prefer the term "humble" instead of scrap!


How about some free quilt patterns?
Art Gallery Fabrics has a free pattern page here!


A while ago, many of us were sending blocks to Claudia Pfeil for quilts for Ukrainian relief.  Want to see what happened to them?  Sue sent a wonderful link to photos of the quilts.  As Sue said,  "It's inspiring!"  Check it out here.  


Weird Musing:  An item (like a quilt) is considered an antique if it is 100 years old.  

A vintage item is at least 20 years old (according to most websites).  I have also heard a quilt needs to be 30 or 40 years old to be considered vintage.

Retro is also a term thrown around these days.  It means it's old (but not vintage or antique) and probably out of style which may make it hip. 

In 8 years, quilts from the 1930s will officially be antique.

Quilts from 2002, 1992 and/or 1982 are considered vintage ???  That freaks me out.  I'm off to sew...

Have a safe and happy day!

Monday, July 25, 2022

Sew: A Needle Pulling Thread...

 Happy Monday and Happy National Thread the Needle Day!

Let's celebrate the tools of our trade today!

Ahhh...the days when needlebooks were given away for FREE to advertise stores and products!

The books that celebrated not only sewing but passing on the tradition to the next generation:

Can't forget our furry friends:

My personal favorite is that gal that many of us grew up with...Sewing Susan!

Of course we can't forget our thread:

And, just when you thought you heard it all, a 1934 newspaper relayed the newest sport of the year--Needle Threaders.  No, not this kind:

Men who compete by threading needles and were greatly ridiculed by Winifred Black.

Weirdly enough, the competitions continued after WW2.  Ebay has a photo of a champion from Spain doing her thing:

Whatever you're doing today, enjoy threading your needle!

Have a happy and safe a day!

Friday, July 22, 2022

Flower Friday: July 22, 2022

 Happy Flower Friday!

This week Alice shared a photo of her nasturtiums.  Aren't they sweet?  She loves the round leaves and I do too.  They sort of remind me of water lily pads!

Some beauties from Sue's garden:

Queen Anne's Lace

Turk's Cap Lily

Phlox, lilies, susans, and coneflowers!

Over in my area, I finally got to work on a little of the back garden.  For weeks, I've had a Mama catbird scold me anytime I went out back to work.  I figured I would just let her do her thing and gave her and her very loud baby time to bond.  I didn't anticipate how much the bushes would grow in this heat and I dang near needed a machete to clear some paths.   I'll catch up with actual weeding when the weather cools.

Above and below, The Swan Hydrangea.

Have a safe and happy weekend!
Stay cool!

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Scrap Patterns of the 1930s


The Depression was really when used fabrics were incorporated into quilts.  I know, I know, there's a myth about fabrics being recycled in the 19th century but the real era of reusing fabrics was during the 1930s when necessity made it necessary to use everything one could.

Rarely were scrap patterns discussed in the newspaper before that era.  There were a few exceptions, like this pattern from 1917:

But the 1930s changed everything and quilt patterns were frequently advertised for use in scrap quilts.  The bright and clear colors of this era added an emotional uplift, not only for the maker but a bit of cheerfulness in the home.

If the word "scrap" wasn't used in the title of the pattern, it was at least included in the caption:

Feathered Star Scrap Quilt, 1933:

Annie's Scrap Quilt, 1933:


Jeweled Scrap Quilt Pattern (Kansas City Star)

Scrap quilts must have really answered a need because they continued to be advertised after the Depression.  Either for utility or beauty, these quilts are now celebrated.




Mrs. Julia Noren was celebrated in the mid 1950s for her use of leftover and recycled fabrics.  In fact she was dubbed, "the Queen of the Scraps!"

I hope you are staying cool and comfortable during these hot days.  If you have any photos to share for Flower Friday, please email me at!

Have a safe and happy day!

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Reading a Quilt

 Last week, my husband I took our dog to one of our favorite parks in a nearby city.  The park features a waterfall and wide creek; my husband was pleased to see some fly fisherman casting along the waterway.  "Let me explain this to you..." he said to me.  I'm not a fly fisherman like he is and it was fascinating to hear how the "fly guys" choose where they want to position themselves.  My husband concluded this lengthy discourse by telling me, "this is what we call reading the stream." 

We use a similar technique to ascertain the history or date of an antique or vintage quilt.  The moment a person opens a quilt, we are almost immediately struck by the overall tones  that tell us "19th century quilt", "Pennsylvania German style quilt", "depression era quilt", etc.

Quite often we find that scrap quilts have fabrics from a variety of decades.  We date the quilt from the most modern fabric but indicated that the maker had "a deep scrap bag."  I was curious if I could find a photo of an antique "scrap bag." I was unsuccessful but I did find an interesting article in the paper.

This was published in 1912 and must have been a popular idea because it was reprinted in a variety of newspapers.  It reminded me of the thread catchers that are so popular right now.  I free tutorial to make one is here

In England a similar problem must have faced women in 1912.  The suggestion I found there was to tack a bag directly to the machine (obviously because the machine was housed on wood).

Of course one could always BUY a scrap bag like this advertisement suggested in 1908:

I didn't know these bags were used as scraps as well!  I had one in my old and spacious apartment and kept my embroidery in it.  Do you use one?

Have a safe and happy day!