Tuesday, July 5, 2011

BARGAIN HUNTING

One of my favorite things to do on the weekends is go antiquing in search of bargains. Sometimes I come home empty-handed and other times I return with a treasure or two. This weekend turned up these antique 19th-century hand-pieced quilt blocks—20 blocks for $5. I've often seen this style of block with signatures in the center, so perhaps the quilter planned to make a signature quilt?


Now I'm wondering what I should do with these blocks. Would you leave them as is or make them into a project? Currently, several are pieced into rows. In a few of the blocks, the lighter background fabrics are badly stained. I'd be particularly interested to hear about what you would do with these. Would you leave them as is or take the blocks apart and reuse the patterned fabrics (which are in good condition) for something else? Normally I would not disturb an old quilt block.


Here are a couple other finds from this past weekend's antiquing excursion—a lovely vintage lavender morning glory quilt in excellent condition. One of our spare bedrooms is decorated with 1930s/40s vintage quilts and linens and I thought this quilt would make a nice addition to it.


This vintage DMC stitching pamphlet was in a junk pile...


It is filled with cross-stitch designs and monograms...


And a set of eight vintage milk glass snack sets for a little over $5 (marked down from $9.50). These will be perfect for the antique study group I'm hosting next week! Even though eight sets won't be enough to serve all the ladies coming, I have other milk glass snack sets that I can use. I went through a milk glass collecting craze in my twenties, so I have several pieces in my pantry cupboards. 


Thanks for visiting today. I hope you all had a pleasant weekend and happy Fourth!

15 comments:

  1. You have a good weekend antiquing!! I think you should leave the blocks as is, and make a quilt/throw out of them. Isn't there something you can buy to soak them in that's supposed to remove old stains? I have a very similar quilt like the Morning Glory quilt. I have never found the exact pattern of my quilt that my Grandmother made but I think it was possibly a Rainbow Quilt Co. pattern. But I do love the Morning Glories!! I think you had a good weekend hunt!!!

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  2. Ooh what super finds - those signature blocks are lovely. Pity about the stains - but maybe they are part of the story of this quilt. The morning glory quilt will look very well with the other contemporaneous quilts - it is a beauty!

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  3. Fabulous finds! What a great shopping trip.
    One day the blocks will speak to you and tell you what to do.
    The fabrics are so beautiful - frame in 2-way glass frames for viewing front and back?

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  4. I always look for quilt blocks for my sister. She quilts them and makes them into aprons and hand bags. So cute. Thanks for sharing. Hope you had a great 4th. RC at My Old Historic House

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  5. What wonderful quilt blocks!! I wouldn't disturb them! What I would do, is find some similar reproduction fabrics and make some MORE blocks...then set them all together, quilt it, and then overdye the whole thing in some tan RIT dye to 'mottle' the whole thing! Embrace the stains! ;o)

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  6. The blocks are worth more as is, but if you plan on keeping them forever; then sewing them into a quilt is up to you. As far as the stains; if they are bad and I want to get rid of them, here's what I do: Make a runny paste of Oxyclean powder and water. Using a Q-tip dipped in the paste,gently dab at the stain rubbing in gentle circles. Wait a few minutes to see if it lightens the stain. Repeat if necessary. Take a clean Q-tip and wet the end and repeat the motions to remove the paste, let air-dry. Sometimes this gets all the stain, but sometimes not. If not, enjoy the block as is. It's earned its stains like people earn their gray hair and wrinkles. :)

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    1. With regard to this pattern, can anyone tell me what the pattern's name is and what the symbolism is? We have a quilt w/the same pattern (plus another pattern unable to identify) and we would like to know more about it.

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    2. Please email me your email address so that we can respond. Without it, we cannot reply to you since you are a non-reply blogger (meaning there is no email address that comes through with your comment).

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  7. You can probably just soak those blocks in some plain water to see if the stains come out. For tougher stains I use Oxyclean. Just soak them overnight in a pailful of water with about a teaspoon of oxyclean and the stains should come out. I do this with old doll clothes and it works perfectly just make sure you rinse them well. I like using this because it doesnt fade the fabrics.

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  8. Would love to go antiquing where you live as you nearly always seem to find wonderful treasure's. Love those blocks.

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  9. You certainly had a good shopping trip. Like Sue, I'd also love to go antiquing where you live too! You find such lovely things.

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  10. I would make a table runner out of the blocks that are stitched together in a row. The others you could make pillows out of or work them in to a tablecloth quilt with them in the center and newer fabric on the outter sides.
    Good luck, the possiblilties are really endless. What a great perdiciment to be in. Congrats on your great finds.

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  11. You have some great browns in those old quilt blocks. Just think about them for awhile before you do anything. I have kept old one just to look at but I have also made them into small quilts and hand quilted them for toppers on my table or just placing where ever. And I don't ever mind the stains...........but storage smells? I would at least hand wash them and roll them in a towel, air dry and then press as flat as possile. And then look at them before deciding what to do......

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  12. Great finds! I would try removing the stains as suggested above before deciding how to proceed. The last resort would be to take them apart. I just sprayed tea staining on a new quilt to get it to look old!

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  13. I love to see your treasure hunting posts! Your finds are always wonderful and beautiful!! That's one thing we are out of luck here in the desert... Can't wait to see how you are going to use those lovely blocks.

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