Ohio Red and White Medallion, Center Block

As mentioned in my last post, I’m creating a quilt inspired by a historical work held by the International Quilt Study Center & Museum. You can find the inspiration quilt here. And you can find more information about it here. I don’t intend to reproduce it exactly, but to honor it.

The center block of the quilt is quirky and complex. I found the inspiration quilt more than a month ago and have spent much of that time pondering its construction. The sizing of components and the technique to use for them both present challenges. (And opportunities!) On first glance it looks mostly pieced, but I decided that appliqué would be my primary technique. I’m not very experienced with appliqué, so thinking it would be “easier” gives you a notion of how the piecing would go.

And because I don’t appliqué much, I tried multiple methods before settling on raw edge fusing, with a button-hole stitch to seal the edges.

Here’s the block so far, with more detail to come. It is surrounded by the hourglass blocks that border it a little later. I have a ways to go yet, but I’m really happy with it and its resemblance to the historical quilt.



Ohio Red and White Medallion, 1800-1820

My adventures with the Delectable Mountains quilt, currently on my longarm frame, were inspired by a photo found at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum. During the same expedition in which I found that, I found another quilt from the early 1800s that is a bit more my style.

The IQSCM has a confusing policy sheet for sharing their photos. Though the quilt is 200 years old and therefore is not protected by copyright laws, and the design, regardless, is not protected, the quilt is owned by the museum, and the photo was taken by someone. They have the rights to the photo; I do not. And since I don’t understand their policy, I will share a link to the photo, rather than the photo itself. You can find the inspiration quilt here. And you can find more information about it here.

As it says in the title to this post, this quilt was made in the early 1800s, possibly in Ohio. It is made from two fabrics that currently appear to be a brown print and a creamy white, likely an unbleached muslin. The brown may have been a different color when it was made. The quilt size is 79″ x 81″.

I’m using this quilt as inspiration for a red and white quilt of my own. It is not a reproduction; I won’t use similar fabrics and it will be somewhat smaller. Some of the appliqué elements will be different than on the original. This EQ7 image approximates the whole design. I wasn’t able to draw either the center or the outside corner blocks as on the original quilt, but they will be more similar to the original than you see below.


All the construction will be pretty simple, with the exception of the center block. The very center is a variation of a LeMoyne star, with extra points set on top of a base. The straight red lines in the center may be most easily made with appliqué, too. So even some things that begin as pieced, or appear as pieced, will be appliquéd.

At this point I have the hourglass border blocks made. (I love making hourglass blocks.) Once I get some progress made quilting the Delectable Mountains, I’ll come back to tackle the center block.

When finished, I hope to exhibit this quilt in my local guild’s show in early June.


A Memory

This morning in Facebook, a “memory” of the day included two pictures. I finished this little quilt in 2010.


This is actually the second attempt at making a quilt from these parts. If I remember correctly, this began as the back for something else. I started to free motion quilt on my DSM and it went badly. After picking out all the stitches, I decided that the front was not well-enough pieced (by someone else) to keep, and I trashed it. But the back fabric was much better quality, and whatever start I had on it was worth revising.

Here is the little cat in the window.


I donated the quilt to my guild, and it was passed on from there.


Facebook Catbird Quilt Studio Page

For a variety of reasons, I’ve decided to shut down the Catbird Quilt Studio Facebook page. If you’ve been getting links to my blog posts there and wish to continue following me, please follow me directly from here by using the Follow button on the right margin. Or if you use another reader service such as Bloglovin’ or Feedly, you can add the blog to your list that way.

After this post, I’ll no longer link posts to Facebook. In a week or two, I’ll remove the page.

Thanks so much for reading and following, however you choose to do so!


No one was very thrilled with my Delectable Mountains quilt top, including me. As I said the other day, it was pretty but not very interesting. In particular, others commented on the large amount of double pink, and how the corners in pink seemed large and unbalanced.


Delectable Mountains design, most popular in the 1840s – 1870s. Color combination of double pink and brown popular during same years. Unquilted top. Approximately 61″ square.

I defended the design as traditional, and not something I was inclined to mess with. However, some DM quilts from the 1800s had stars in the corners. After consideration, that seemed like an appropriate way to break up the pink expanse, brighten the whole, and add some interest.

I built corner blocks using the variable star. The background fabric is the same as used in the center star, and the brown is the same as the one surrounding the center. It is slightly softer in appearance than the brown of the middle border and HST border.

Surgery required removing stitches that held the double pink corners in place. Then I pinned in one seam at a time and re-stitched. It was a pretty easy process as my new star corners matched the size well.

Here is the amended quilt top.


Delectable Mountains with star corner blocks. Unquilted top. Approximately 61″ square.

I think it’s better. It is brighter, and there is more to look at. But I still don’t think it’s very interesting.

Either way, I’m done with the top now. And I don’t plan to make the design again in red and white.