Every June, at Rose Hill Manor in Frederick,
Maryland, there is a juried quilt show. Each
show seems to surpass the last. In previous
years, variations of the same patterns were
The year 2000 saw a few duplications. There
were many innovative uses of different fabrics
and "enhancers" such as braid,
buttons, photos on cloth, etc. My companion
chose "Tree of Life" (a sampler) as
her favorite, but I couldn’t forget the wall
hanging "Blue Heron Flying," an
In a dimly lit corner of one room were
shelves displaying photos, vases, cups, etc. It
seemed a strange display in a quilt show. Closer
inspection revealed that this was actually a
quilt! The fabrics chosen, the dim lighting, and
the craftsmanship created a perfect illusion.
Many entries were machine pieced and quilted.
This fact was disappointing to me, as well as to
my companion who is half my age, but prefers
hand quilting. Machine piecing is acceptable,
and even required for certain patterns. However,
a beautiful quilt deserves the attention and
loving care only hand quilting can give.
Recent issues of quilt magazines are
featuring patterns designed for machine piecing
and quilting. One quilter who buys flea market
tops prefers machine quilting so the quilt will
lie flat. Mt. Tabor Quilters have finished many
"trunk" quilt tops which were often in
bad repair and poorly made. Hand quilted and
bound, these tops became lovely quilts just as
the piecer planned.
This year’s visit to Lancaster County, Pa.,
to see quilts made by the Amish and Mennonites
revealed deviations from the
"sameness" of patterns in past years.
Some of the same beautiful appliquéd quilts
were available, but some of the eye-catching
variations were new Log Cabin quilts—
"Log Cabin Star", "Log Cabin and
Fan", and "Medallion Log Cabin."
Also a beautiful "Wedding Ring" which
featured embroidered flowers on each piece of
the white background fabric. All of these quilts
were made for the non-Amish trade, or the
"English" as the Amish say.
If you are a fabricoholic, you must visit
Zooks. They have been at the same location for
28 years, but this was my first visit. The store’s
interior is a sea of color. Yellow is not my
favorite color and there were so many bolts of
yellows that I could now concentrate on the
other fabrics. Certainly my favorite Hoffmans,
Cranston, and Bernatex fabrics were there, but I
didn’t see them. If you know exactly what you
want, go to Zooks; they probably have it. But
don’t go there to be inspired by one fabric
that begs to be purchased.