Enjoy a beautiful day in the country while shopping for antique, vintage, shabby chic and handmade treasures.

Our next Barn Market will be Friday, May 19, 2017, 1:00-8:00 PM and Saturday, May 20, 9:00-3:00
5602 E. CR 100 N., Seymour, Indiana

Monday, June 22, 2015

Re-cycling Quilts

 Jenny and I are both quilters, so quilts, quilt squares and quilt designs are going to be a big part of our decorations for the barn market.

We've picked up some well-worn, well-loved quilts at flea markets and antique stores, and a few weeks ago, we purchased 6 shabby quilts at an auction.

Jenny has great plans for these quilts -- primarily, to use them to cover bales of straw for seating for our guests in the food and entertainment area.  Since Jenny is working hard on the barns, I agreed to take the quilts home and get busy.

But despite their holes, stains and general raggedy-ness, I had a hard time making the first cut into those quilts.

I have never thought to record all the hours it takes to make a quilt (from choosing patterns and fabric to finishing those last stitches on the binding and label), but I know it's a lot of hours.  A LOT.  But that's not what quilting is about.

You love someone, so you make them something they will love and that will keep them warm.  That's it.

50, 60, 70 years ago, a woman (or group of women) sat down to create these quilts to keep her family warm, just like we do now.  It just breaks my heart to cut into all that loving work.

Then Jenny gave me a "snap out of it" talk!  These quilts will probably never again cover a bed -- they're just too far gone.  If we don't use them and display them in a different way, they'll probably just continue to rot away until someone throws them in a dumpster.  Cutting the quilts into straw bale covers, chair covers and buntings is, in a way, continuing to honor the women who made them.

Before I show you my first project, I thought I would document these quilts.  They're still beauties, in my book!

Monkey Wrench 
 6" blocks set on point 

Colorful 2" squares

LeMoyne Star  

Texas Star
18" blocks in bright colors!  

Tree of Life
10" blocks.  Look at all those little pieces!

Here is my first quilt-cutting project -- a bunting for the music wagon.  Dresden Plate, originally set in long rectangles:  

It was in terrible shape -- rust spots, worn fabric and I think it might have even been burned on a stove -- there are some suspicious coil-shaped scorches.  But doesn't it look pretty now, displayed with some reproduction fabric strips on clothesline?  I might just hang this in my living room after the sale.

This is what vintage/antique lovers know:

There is value in things that have outlived their original usefulness.  
There is honor in remembering the ones who created and used those things.  
There is beauty in finding a purpose for them again.  



  1. Love the bunting! Can't wait to see what else you do with the quilts! I have several vintage quilts made by my grandmas, and I would love to find ways to re-use/display them instead of storing them in the basement. (I'm Brian's cousin, Lisa, btw.)