The 4:25 p.m. Pacific Northwest....

departing Chicago....heading west..come ride with us

Monday, September 3, 2007

Dry Gulch or Box Canyon????

From my window seat in the engine, the tracks ahead look uncertain. A natural condition of the route perhaps...or maybe just that what our train contains is too meager an offering. I had hoped when I created this blog that it might enjoy the kind of journey of the true Orphan trains. Enough content to be necessary, a job being done, satifying results. I'm not very sure anymore that there is enough interest to warrent keeping this blog going. Some of us, like Tonya, myself, Bonnie and a few others have an endless fascination with the unique style, maverick approach, and 'make do' attitude of our ancestor quilters.
And I don't mind at all, taking time from my quilting and sewing to find, scan, crop and post OLD orphan quilts, occasionally. I love hearing from those of you that know of an orphan top or quilt to share with ALL. Sometimes I come across the orphan you are creating(by accident), and if possible it appears here for all to enjoy and learn from.
I am NOT, however, going to scour alleys and byways, and dark corners of world, nor dig in your closets to find an orphan. If you have them, or are paricipating in the challenge, or have made an orphan block quilt in the past, I occasionally need to get an email(like the one from Lucy yesterday) saying that you'd like to share it. If not, then I'm afraid our Orphan block train is running out of fuel to continue it's journey. It could be that it will just sit here in a dry glutch or box canyon, unable to move forward. It's up to ALL of us,not just me. Lately there have been NO comments about anything. And while the readership holds at about 150 a day, it's hard to tell if ANY interest in Orphan block quilts remains. We are coming into autumn here in the Mid-West Uunited States, and being an October child, it's my favorite season. If there is NO continuing interest, I'll just park the train here in dry country and move on to other things.
The pictures today are of: #1 a string quilt from Pennsylvania, Mennonite, late 19th century- 27" X 39". The other vintage quilt is also from Pennsylvania, Mennonite, late 19th century, 41" X 54". Both are in a book called Small Endearments by Sandi Fox. Published 1985 & 1994. The two pictures of modern quilts are:first-one of my many Mile A Minute quilts. Second-the newest Orphan block quilt. I did some monkeying around with the Bento Box 'idea', combining them in a couple of different ways..liked NONE of it, including the bright flannel. So, it's now officially ready for a border and tying. It will go off to one of the younger grandsons. It was all in a day's sewing!

13 comments:

debby said...

I enjoy reading each post, but have never commented.

If you need to stop this train, I understand and thank you for the inspiration.

Jeanne said...

Hi sweetie!
I'm one of the guilty ones: reading but not participating. I'm just blaming it on summer.
Anyway, I LOVE seeing the photos you share, both of vintage orphans and of new projects. This string one today is awesome. I don't know how this will all play itself out, but speaking for myself -- I'm encouraged that we're reaching autumn and my activity level sh0ould be picking up accordingly.
Hugs!! Jeanne

Lazy Gal Tonya said...

sorry, read it, but rarely comment. lots of times I've already commented on it at another blog. am interested!

Hedgehog said...

Love this new blog of yours, but totally understand if you merge it into your other blog. I hope someday I will have enough orphans to make such quilts!!

Tracy said...

I love this blog but often fail to comment. I think it is fascinating to see each person's blocks become quilts. I too love the Maverick and just make do style of quilting.

But I understand if you want to stop the train, but if you want to keep going I promise to comment:)

I love the bright quilt and know one of your grandsons will too.

Sue in western WA said...

You *know* I love the orphans! I like your bright Bento Box too. I admire you for finishing it when you didn't like it at all. I absolutely love the string quilt up at the top. May have to look for a copy of that book...

KC Sunshine said...

I'm sorry - I'm a lurker, but I regularly check this site becasue I love the idea. I'm a new-ish quilter and don't have many spare blocks (I tend not to test them first and wing it as I go!) I'm working on a scrappy medallion right now that I hope to post someday when I have time (and access to the computer I share with my family). Love this idea and I'm grateful you share your time and photos. I understand if it's too hard to keep up with two blogs!

Colleen Whalen Eskridge said...

Please...keep on if others have interest...I love both of your blogs...and have definitely gotten the "bug". Just need time to go through the many ....shame....plastic bags of "organized" chaos which is my way of assembling the certain parts of my current quilt fabric cupboard. I am hoping to dig out all my little orphan pieces...to assemble a small ...er..something of other.But so enjoy seeing what you post. Thanks for starting this ...have always wanted to do an orphan...quilt. just wish I could raid all the cartons stored in Texas...could definitely do at least a kingsized quilt...with the leftovers there! Absolutely love seeing the stuff....I have started the mile a minutes...but didn't realize to use wider strips...so it is taking forever...should have saved the "thinnies" for a string quilt. My mistake. But have about 30 finished blocks..and others to add to...when bigger. Thanks colleen

cher said...

well, looks like I showed up in the nick of time :-) orphan blocks and quilts will start coming my way soon- it's been challenging lately at my house...and of course then they will come your way. just a few more loose ends and a visiting dgd to play with this weekend. It's good to let folks know there needs to be interest expressed...

Studio Christine said...

hi finn.

I *finally* manage to get "cookies" so I can comment

I do like the Orphan Train,and when tghe chaos of new floors is done, I hope to add a station here.

Katie said...

The old steam trains had to pause at many stations to fill up with water and coal. Can't complete the trip without the stops. Also needed to let people get on and off. I see the steam building up again.

Marcie said...

Oh Finn, this is too much fun! Slow down if you must, but you have really started something wonderful here. Plus your dialogue is so charming!

andsewitis Holly said...

I've been behind in reading *all* blogs and am trying to catch up. I absolutely love the orphan block/quilt concept and enjoy this blog. It is definately the style of my heart for quilts as I like to make do with what I have. I'm fresh out of orphans but always have the Orphan Train in the back of my mind.

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