The Morrell Quilt … a tale of red and green

Last year, on our annual pilgrimage to The Parsonage we called into Threadbear, my absolutely favourite patchwork and quilting shop.   Actually, we almost lived there that weekend, calling in on the Saturday, and Corliss coming to visit us on the Sunday to show us some of her antique quilts and then calling back in on our way home on the Sunday!

On the Sunday we wandered into the backroom and clapped eyes on this thing of beauty!

Di_ford-morrellThis quilt designed by Di Ford (formerly of Primarily Patchwork) is based on a quilt by Sarah Morrell, and is made up of 60 blocks combining piecing, needleturn applique and broderie perse.

We all swooned, and when Corliss mentioned they were getting the quilt and kits ready to release this as a BOM at the Quilt Exhibition at Jeff’s Shed, my heart raced… do I sign up for it, or don’t I?

We talked about this almost all the way home, it’s gorgeous and it’s RED!   Di’s patterns are always fantastic, but I have a bucket load of fabric from this era at home already, should I wait and see if it is offered as a pattern after the BOM is finished.

Roll on- it’s now September, and in our conversation with Corliss she mentioned that Di Ford is teaching classes at Needles and Pins in Warrandyte, a quilt shop that we weren’t familar with.  And Jayne, who made her first quilt with Di at Primarily Patchwork and has made several other of her designs, decides to track down a class list and emails it to the group, saying “there’s a couple of quilts here that sound promising might try to track down photo”.   And I recognise one of those promising quilts as the Morrell Quilt!   So, 4 of us signed up to do the class, six classes over 6 months but with gaps between each class for us to work on the quilt.

I agonised over what colours I wanted to use.   While the quilt is stunning, I wanted to do something different… and so I sorted through my reproduction fabrics and decided I was going to use an ivory background and make my blocks predominantly red and green.

imag0583Took along my stash to class one, and  with guidance from Di, started on my centre block, which is still a work in progress… as I got a bit disheartened when it became obvious my centre is going to have a hole in it – yo-yo anyone?

But in prepping for some more blocks I realised my fabric, predominantly from the same range, includes a lot of the same prints, just in the two different colourways and if I wanted to jazz it up, I’d need to buy some more fabric, so a few weeks ago, Jayne and I headed over to Somerset Patchwork and I have now ended up with this little collection…

imag0582imag0581The large floral fabric is going to be used to broderie perse blocks (if I decide to do them!)   I need to do some serious piecing if I am going to keep up with this quilt!

But the day spent with Jayne, looking at her blocks and playing with my fabric has me motivated…imag0580

And I’ve discovered other people have either finished this quilt or are also on the journey, which also motivates me.

Links to other people’s Morrell Quilt projects:

  • Jayne’s fabrics – if we ask her nicely she might post photo’s of her finished blocks
  • Helen Hayes finished quilt as displayed at Australian Quilt Convention 2008
  • The Quilting B’s block progress – interestingly using the same fabric for her broderie perse as I have

Flossie’s latest project… Michelle’s quilt

For those of you reading this blog regularly, you’ll know the majority of finished objects on here are not mine, but my Mum’s (Flossie).  This is the story of  her latest!

My brother has a close friend, Darren.  When they met, Darren and his wife had a small son, and Mum duly made him a quilt – a single bed version of Dorothy Clark’s Michael’s Quilt – except done on a bright lime green background, with I spy fabric for the blocks and bordered in oranges, blacks and purples.  There are photo’s kicking around, I should try to find them!

When this little family then went on to have a little girl, Mum made her a traditional Sunbonnet Sue quilt – using 1930s fabrics (again – need to track down photo but similar in style to this one but with pink sashing and borders.

So, when at the start of last year my brother asked if Mum would make a simple quilt for Darren’s wife, Mum said yes, but it would have to come from stash.

She poured through magazines and patterns, before falling back on our old time favourite block – the Dresden Plate.   And commenced cutting up petals for the plates from every floral fabric she possessed… until…

We got the first copy( ** but not the only copy) of a APQ Applique special book as a freebie with an Australian Patchwork and Quilting Magazine and instead of making a quilt out of stash, my brother was ordered to hand over some dollars for Mum to buy fabric and this quilt was made from September-December 2009.   All hand appliqued, and hand quilted using the quilt as you go method – each section quilted individually and then joined together.    My brother thought it was ugly, but Michelle loved it.

Michelle's quilt

** we probably have received about 6 copies of this magazine as a freebie – I keep duplicates here at my place, but we pass on any that are triplicates or more.

Wouldn’t you know it, I can’t find a copy now to give the designer a credit – will amend this post when I track down the magazine.