Sunday, April 3, 2011

Life Goes On

"Awake, thou wintry earth-
Fling off thy sadness!
Fair vernal flowers, laugh forth
Your ancient gladness!"
   ~Thomas Blackburn, An Easter Hymn

It's supposedly Spring here in the Midwest but you could have fooled me. When I was walking the dog earlier I spotted some fresh growth in the front garden. Encouraging, but I'd still like to see the sun soon . . .

"The sun was warm but the wind was chill. You know how it is with an April day."
~Robert Frost

"Expect to have hope rekindled. Expect your prayers to be answered in wondrous ways. The dry seasons in life do not last. The spring rains will come again." ~Sarah Ban Breathnach

If there's one quilty thing that reminds me of Spring it's a basket quilt. Baskets have always evoked the simple life and remind me of the past. For some of us, baskets are a great way to decorate our homes in a primitive or Country style. Long ago, there were so many uses for baskets, and they were especially such a part of nineteenth century life, that it’s really no surprise that they found their way into quilting patterns as well.

In earlier times, every home had numerous baskets and every basket had a role – there were egg baskets and berry baskets, laundry baskets and sewing baskets. Quilters in the nineteenth century had sewing baskets that had to be large enough to hold needles, thread, scissors, buttons and perhaps a small project or scraps of fabric. Along with baskets, everyone needs a basket quilt or two.

The Pinwheels were really making me crazy and I've had a hard time concentrating on one single project -  my brain is still flitting all over. So, I thought, today I'll just make a basket quilt to make myself feel better, LOL. Who cares if everything else goes unfinished and nothing gets done? Like the season, I'm just moving on and creating as I go along.

I already had these scrappy little pink and blue basket blocks that were made years ago and just never put them together into a quilt.

Originally, they were intended to be for the little Prairie Baskets quilt in Prairie Children and Their Quilts but somewhere along the line I changed my mind and went with indigo and yellow for that one.

Out from my hoarding drawer came the lovely blue wavy fabric again . . . I have gotten many e-mails from fans asking about this Marcus/Judie Rothermel fabric that I used in the cover quilt for Remembering Adelia. I'm so sorry to those of you who cannot find thise fabric ANYWHERE and have requested my remnants, but I only have a little bit left and am hanging onto it just for quilts like this. You'll surely see it again. It seems to really go with everything I make.

I think someday I'll quilt a nice little flower motif in the plain blocks.

There will be more talk about Basket quilts as I show you how to make those curved handles from bias strips for the little Civil War Baskets quilt in my book Remembering Adelia on Wednesday, April 6 when I am guest blogging again on Madame Samm's blog Sew We Quilt. There will also be a nice giveaway of Remembering Adelia, so be sure take a look and post a comment if you don't have this book. Think Spring!

"If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome."
~Anne Bradstreet

Life goes on . . .


Dora, the Quilter said...

We're having a little spring here in NM too--I can tell because I have 3 narcissus out there getting beaten to shreds by dust, sand, and tumbleweeds carried by winds up to 60 mph! I too love baskets and basket quilts--doubt that I'll ever tire of either.

Meredith said...

I wonder if it is a hidden requirement to like/love basket quilts to be a quilter. I sure can not get enough of them.

Galaphie said...

Come sempre le tue trapunte mi piacciono un sacco...forse i motivi tradizionali.....forse i colori....sono bellissime...

Sunnybec said...

We have actually had summer here for a while...but yesterday we were back to autumn! Its foggy this morning, it's just crazy I never know what to wear. I want to have a go at a basket quilt so will definitely look out for your tut on M. Samms. Linda

Truffle queen said...

In four weeks we'll be headed back to IL from our months in FL where the weather is getting HOT! Like 90! Love the little baskets - looking forward to the tutorial on Wednesday! I remember from days of yore - a "Three Stooges" quote - "Spring has sprung, the grass has riz, where the heck the flowers is?" LOL

Sue said...

Your basket quilts are gorgeous! I love making them as well. I am looking forward to the tutorial on the bias strips for the handles.

Just love all the colors of these quilts too:)

Blessings to you.

katie said...

I love the little quilts. Great colors, and who doesn't like baskets.
We had 86 degrees yesterday here in Missouri, but this morning it is 46.

Heartsdesire said...

What a sweet little basket quilt. You always have just the right project to cheer up a Monday morning. I'll look forward to seeing you at Stash Manicure on the 6th. Here on the west coast of Vancouver Island, it is spring. Lots of flowering shrubs, trees, tulips, daffodils, etc. But the wind is still cold, so no veggie garden planted yet.

Beth said...

I love baskets too. Basket quilts of all kinds just call to me. I actually have two of your booksout to make minis to donate to the silent auction at our show this fall. Look forward to the tutorial.

jennifer said...


i had to laugh! you went from spinning pinwheels and spinning thoughts... to basket therapy for feeling like a basket case! or at least, that's my own humorous spin on it!

in any case, BOTH projects are lovely. and thank goodness we have quilting to soothe & calm the ragged edges of our days. :-)

sending you cherry blossoms from the west coast,

Anonymous said...

Lovely day in Richmond, Va...86 degrees! Our Spring came early, then a little snow on top of all the blossoms. What wild and crazy weather all over it seems. Baskets and little houses are my favorite blocks. Thanks for blogging and showing us your lovely little quilts. So fun to make for a quick creative fix! Blessings, Elaine :)

Kathleen Tracy said...

Jennifer's right - making baskets is . . . well, like therapy, so making a basket quilt was probably just what I needed! LOL

marian said...

lovely quotes and gorgeous little basket quilts, which i'm dying to make!
btw i'm a real 'basket case' and have over twenty in my growing collection..i keep all sorts of things in them and they are scattered throughout the house.

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

Hey Kathleen. I saw the sun in Illinois this morning. I found 'green' under the dead stuff in my garden. I think Spring is finally coming to Illinois. Yipee! Cute quilt!

conny's quilts said...

I hope I can join your give away on your blog, gound it on stash manicure. I love your books, have two already, but like to make a change to win Adelia too! I like to follow your blog from now on!

Marie said...

Kathleen, if you really want to know what I am thinking, it is that I will surely add your blog to my list of favorites!!!
thanks for your posting on Stash Manicure this morning and I would love to win your book!
Marie, in spring time B.C.

Donna said...

Basket quilts are such fun! I like your little ones in today's blog. Thanks for the tutorial on Stash Manicure about bias handles.

Marian said...

I am so glad I found your blog through Stash Manicure. I am going back through the older posts and have become a follower!


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