While in Iowa, I found a vintage quilt top in an antique store:
It was all folded up but from what I could see, I recognized the "Double T Block" or Capital T block design as I had just read an article about Temperance quilts in the most recent Fons & Porter magazine. The double T design was created to symbolize abstinence from alcohol and what I find interesting about the design is the "T" is somewhat hidden and an interesting secondary design pops up behind the 4 T's.
I fell in love with the "scrappiness" of this quilt and the vivid colors. It looks like the quilter used dress and shirting fabric and whatever she had on hand to make up the blocks. The tag on the quilt dated it to the 1920's. The top must have been stored carefully away out of the light.
The blocks were hand stitched but the sashing was first hand-basted on, then machine stitched to the blocks. The quilter never got around to taking out the basting stitches:
Every time I look at this quilt, I see something new.
I'm so glad to have come across this quilt top. I plan on quilting it eventually but would like it looked at by a quilt expert/assessor first.
Usually, I do quite a bit of quilt fabric shopping while in Iowa. Ames has a wonderful quilt store called the Quilt Connection. I made it there but only had a half hour or so to do a quick shop while the rest of my family went looking for Red Monkey root beer. I picked up an odd assortment of fat quarters, Civil War repros and some contemporary fabrics. I've already cut into the yardage.
I'm finding myself drawn to reproduction prints lately, as they work so well in the small 6" blocks for the Farmer's Wife Sampler. It's fun to mix the mostly smaller-scale repros with more contemporary fabrics. I especially love the Alexander Henry B&W featured above.