Today marks the final post featuring my marathon project called, The Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt! I'm so in love with this quilt and happier with the final product than I've probably ever been with any quilt that I've made in the 30+ years that I've been quilting.Cindy Weins (Live a Colorful Life) and I began making the Farmer's Wife blocks together and featuring them on our blogs almost every Friday beginning in June 2011. If you missed it, you can follow along with our comments on the various blocks as well as the letters that accompany each in the book beginning here.
I am fairly certain that without my commitment to Cindy and my blog followers, this quilt would have joined many others in my UFO pile within a few short months. The accountabilility served as a sure motivation over the year that it took to piece all 111 six- inch blocks.
In the front of my book, by Laurie Aaron Hird, I have written, "Last block finished: July 2012". Early on, I decided to use a different setting for my quilt than the one suggested in the book. I'd seen another Farmer's Wife quilt that used a more modern setting that seemed to give the blocks more "breathing room". Finding it was an instant "BINGO" for me!
I also decided that with all of the time I'd spent on these little blocks (many have, what seemed like, 1000 tiny pieces!) I wanted the quilting to be extra-special...something that my utilitarian style couldn't give me. I found a talented machine quilter named, Lynne Harbour, who did a fabulous job! It took some waiting and some "frog stitching" to get it just right, but in the end the result was worth the wait!
From the back, the quilting on the white sateen gives the look of a whole cloth quilt and makes my quilt almost reversible if you ignore the label. (I've had the scripture fabric for several years and with the joy that I felt at finishing this project, it seemed the perfect way to sign the quilt! I added my name,city and dates to the script piece.)
Quite a few of the small blocks became my favored ones while working on this quilt. I have a list of blocks that I hope to enlarge and, perhaps, make again as more modern versions and then stitch more quilts featuring them.
The whimsical effect of using colorful scraps and white sashing make me smile almost every time I look at the Farmer's Wife. I also think of the happy result of meeting Cindy in person shortly before we finished the piecing. We had so much fun working on this project together!
Photographing the quilt on the antique hay wagon at the country home of my good friend, Vicki, made for a happy conclusion. (Vicki's daughter-in-law and grandson were good sports to help with the quilt holding!)Cindy is working on getting her quilt finished up before long and I'll be sure to point you in her direction when it's ready to shine! (Right, Cindy!?)
A big THANK YOU to all who have offered me encouragement over the last two years...you will never know how much it helped to make this a FINISH!