What’s old is new…

This isn’t about the ending of 2015 – that’s later this week and next.  Today is about classic, traditional and heirloom – some of the fabrics and quilts that make us think of antique quilts.


Lots and lots of beautiful antique quilts.  These belong to Edyta SitarLaundry Basket Quilts Instagram.

While it seems like I’ve been sewing with lighter, brighter fabrics lately, I love Reproductions and have made many, many quilts with them.  Maybe not as many as Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gatherings – the girl is P.R.O.L.I.F.I.C.


These are some – yes, some! – of her finishes from this past year.  (From Lisa Bongean Instagram.)  Maybe there’s something in the fiber of Reproduction fabrics that make folks sew lots and lots of itty-bitty pieces into big quilts quickly.  Edyta is just as prolific.

What I love about most Reproduction quilts is that you can work with a specific color palette – brown & red, brown & blue, blue & gold – cheddar, and so on.  Or you can mix them all into a glorious celebration of color and pattern.  Big pieces and tiny pieces, they all mix beautifully.

It’s one of the reasons I’ve been tapping my fingers waiting for the release of Betsy Chutchian’s new book – Classic & Heirloom Quilts.  Published by the folks at It’s Sew Emma and the Fat Quarter Shop, the book and it’s quilts are beautiful.  (I’ve seen the quilts and since Betsy won’t let me have any of them, I’m going to have to make my own.)


Aside from the gorgeous quilts, one of my favorite things about the book is that each of the eight designs comes in three sizes – a Mini, a Lap-sized and a large Bed-sized quilt.


Here are three of the Minis.  The pieces are smaller but the blocks are the same.  Did you know that Betsy likes to make mini versions of her big quilts first so she can check color-placement?  True story.  It’s sort of how the book came about… she had the quilts anyway, right?

For a few of the designs, the pieces in the Lap and Bed-sized quilts are the same, but for some of the designs, the pieces and  blocks are in different sizes.


This is Stepping Out – it’s one of my favorites.  If I had to pick one, of course.

It’s made with Betsy’s Lizzie’s Legacy collection.


So is White Rock Creek.


Okay… all of the quilts in the book are made with Lizzie’s Legacy but since I have this idea of making a big quilt using the small-size blocks from the Mini version… I’m going to need more fabric, right?  And if I need more fabric, that means I can add more fabric-S – as in, variety.

It’s not like Moda doesn’t have a lot of different prints – some that are already in stores and some that will be coming soon.  (Just so you know… I collect Layer Cakes for just this sort of thing, their size is perfect for adding just a little bit and then being “done” with it when it’s gone.  And no, that’s not my “genius” idea… credit Jen Kingwell for that.)


Clockwise from Top Left – Old Cambridge Pike by Barbara BrackmanMille Couleurs by 3 Sisters – technically, not a Reproduction collection by the prints and colors mix beautifully with most Reproductions.  Hawthorne Ridge by Jan Patek – also not technically Reproduction but it still works… those blues and greens are my favorites.  Eliza’s Indigo – another one of Betsy’s collections.


Collection for a Cause – Mill Book 1889 by Howard MarcusSouthern Exposure by Laundry Basket QuiltsSnowman Gatherings II by Primitive Gatherings – the colors and scale of the prints work beautifully with Reproduction prints.  Petite Prints Deux by French General – also not a traditional “Reproduction” collection but if you’d seen the blocks that Tammy has been making mixing Repros and French General, you’d know what an awesome mix they are.

While Christmas 2016 is still a long way away, I think I’m going to have to have some of this coming-next-May collection, Christmas Gatherings from Lisa Bongean.  (Link coming soon.)


Yes, I really do love Reproduction fabrics.

And quilts.  When Edyta finishes this one, I know I’m going to love it.


See!  You really do need all of them.

(I’m off to start figuring out how many layer cake squares I’m going to need to make White Rock Creed – the big Mini.)

Happy Tuesday!

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14 thoughts on “What’s old is new…

  1. Talk about an inspirational posting. This is one of your best. Yep…… You have had many of them. Now, of course, all of these lines have become ” have to haves”. Layer cakes or fat quarters or a mixture. I’m not picky. LoL. Thank you for another fabulous posting. May 2016 be another inspirational year for all of us. Hugs

  2. I love reproduction prints and the lines you showed above are really appealing! And you are right, the 3 Sisters line blends in nicely though it’s not technically a reproduction.

  3. Oh I want some of all of them. I love the vintage, traditional look. The new modern quilts are pretty if you like that kind, but I much prefer the vintage. I just received my charm packs of Kansas Troubles, such gorgeous tiny little prints!!! I am going to have to order several more just for me!!

  4. I just built up my stash with all kinds of bright and pretty ’30’s type reproduction fabrics – and now I have to go shopping for these lovely quieter shades (and get the book) because I am in love with these quilts. But first, I need to shop for more days in my year, and more years in my life…’cuz my quilting bucket list is many lifetimes long…(sigh). Thank you for another inspiring post! Happy New Year to you!!!

  5. How do you married ladies keep your husbands from going non-linear when yet another package comes in the mail? Mine is so done with these packages. I’m sewing as fast as I can!

  6. Can you explain how you use the layer cakes in scrap quilts? Do you cut individual pieces from them or strip piece with them? I’ve used them for hand pieced projects but never thought of them for machine piecing because I couldn’t imagine how to use them.

    1. Hi Mary Jo –

      It’s what you guessed, I cut pieces and strips from the layer cakes. Sometimes I can get all the pieces I need for a block from a single square and sometimes I only want one square or strip for variety.

      They’re like an “instant scrap basket” with big chunks, it really is the variety that I’m looking for – more colors and fabrics without adding so much more to the stash. When I’d buy fat quarters, and even fat eighths just for pops of color and print, I’d wind up with so much left over – in some cases, things I might not ever use again. 🙂

  7. I love all the collections about American civil war and before.
    I use to work just by hands and never with machine .
    I like to much touching prints …

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