You should check out Vicki's blog, Turkey Feathers. And her shop, PatternBee! PatternBee is a wonderful resource for vintage embroidery patterns which Vicki restores and sells both as PDF and iron-on patterns.
She is also an author of two books: Embroidery Craft: Stitching Through the Seasons and Blanket Statement.
I asked Vicki a few questions about the project and here's what she had to say. You can also read more about it on her blog. Thank you, Vicki!
(All images with kind permission of Vicki)
Tell us a bit about yourself
My name is Vicki Haninger, and I live in the beautiful Willamette Valley here in Oregon with my husband and two youngest daughters and various adorable critters, including some that run wild through my backyard on a daily basis!
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been sewing and stitching. Like most stitchers, the biggest influences I had growing up, came from the women in my family who always seemed to have a project of some kind in their hands, mostly out of necessity. But there was also much joy in the making. I found this out early when at the age of five, I was handed a needle and thread and completed my first embroidery of a tiny cross-stitch chick. It was a defining moment for me I guess, because I can still remember the thrill of that simple task (over fifty years ago now, ahem!), and then, to realize where it’s led in terms of what I am doing today.
The State Flower Quilt Project was the result of a basic pattern restoration. (That’s primarily what PatternBee offers, in an attempt to keep the old vintage patterns, which are under public domain, available so that others can access and use them more easily.) Sometimes an old pattern has little things about it that could be made better though and this was the case with the state flower patterns.
So I tweaked the typography, changed the awkward shortened state names to two letter abbreviations, and made slight changes to the flower blocks themselves. Then I began stitching them, one by one, and sharing them on my blog as free pattern downloads. The finished blocks and free patterns can also be found on the Turkey Feathers Flickr page, and the pattern is also available from the PatternBee website as a PDF and as an Iron-On Transfer.
How long did it take to finish the quilt?
My State Flower Quilt was completed in about 18 months, but I didn’t work on it every day or very fast, so that’s maybe an average timeframe for a quilt like this. The flower blocks are easily done though, with just a few basic stitches, and being small they are travel-friendly; a nice size to stow in your bag and take with you to pass the time while you wait somewhere. So the fact that there are fifty of them shouldn’t be too daunting! But if it is, you can always just omit the lettering and use the flowers individually for other projects.