Tuesday, September 14, 2010

President's visit to Operation Kid Comfort

Included in our book, "Thanking Our Troops--God Bless America Touring Quilts is Ann Flaherty's story about Operation Kid Comfort. See the President's visit to Operation Kid Comfort at http://www.operationkidcomfort.blogspot.com/

President visits Operation Kid Comfort

Included in our book, "Thanking Our Troops--God Bless America Touring Quilts," is Ann Flaherty's story about Operation Kid Comfort. See the President's visit to Operation Kid Comfort at http://www.operationkidcomfort.blogspot.com/

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Quilt Collecting & Decorating

Quilt Collecting
by Judy Howard

BENEFITS Grandma’s old bedcover is now being recognized as art, valued as an investment and coveted by collectors and decorators. The quilt represents history, art, emotion and personal expression. There is romance and humor in the names, optical illusions, stunning graphics, symmetry in design and vibrant colors.

Quilts are nostalgic, taking us back to a peaceful time. They have a warm and happy feeling. By collecting quilts, you can own a unique and irreplaceable piece of American handiwork that has pride, patience, love and a little bit of history sewn right in. What else can you buy that will decorate a room so dynamically, have value as an antique and American original piece of art and still be affordable.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR Buy quilts in excellent condition, unless you've fallen in love with a spectacular wall hanging, or something of great historic significance. Since you'll be decorating with the quilts, judge them as you would art for graphic design, color~ symmetry and personal appeal. Buy what you love. Look for quality of piecing and hand quilting. Stiches should be even and close.

Signatures, dates or initials greatly enhance the value. The quilt provenance or history should be carefully preserved by typing on muslin and basting on the back of the quilt for it too increases the value dramatically.

Collecting quilts from each decade and of each pattern has become popular and provides an invaluable education. Patchwork quilts like the Double Wedding Ring and Grand­mother's Flower Garden are extremely versatile because they're beautiful in any changing color scheme. The simple Nine Patch type country quilt works well in an informal setting, and the appliqués tend to enhance a more formal room.

Spectacular quilts of great graphic design in two colors with distinctive borders make dynamic wall hangings. Lone Stars, Ocean Waves, Trips Around the World, etc, are great patterns on the wall. Try a Lone Star on a table. Red and white and blue and white quilts are favorites for decorating. Good borders frame a quilt like artwork.

WHAT SIZE? Almost any quilt can be used on a twin, full or queen bed. Even working with a small quilt, you can use the length for the width, cover the top fifth of the bed with a coordinating sheet and pillows and use dust ruffles. Generally a 6 1/2" drop will cover the mattress unless it’s a pillow-top mattress. Following are minimal widths or lengths (using the length for the width):

TWIN measures 39"x 74" so 52" covers mattress width.
FULL" 54”x 74" so"67" "
QUEEN" 60"x 80" so"73" "
KING" 78"x 80" so 91" "

Remember that borders and ruffles can be added to increase the size for King. Because the demand for small crib quilts for wall hangings has greatly increased their price, you can effectively use large quilts folded over a rod.

SUMMARY: It’s great fun to collect and switch out quilts for each season for beds, table coverings and wall hangings. It’s the fast and easy way to update and change your décor every three months without the expense of redecorating.

Picture your home all warm and cozy with your friends admiring your wonderful quilt collection, which decorates your home so beautifully. Investing in these heirlooms for your children can be fun and profitable and you deserve the best. After all, A THING OF BEAUTY IS A JOY FOREVER. HAPPY QUILT COLLECTING.

Quilt Care

QUILT CARE by Judy Howard

DISPLAY Quilts give a warm, cozy feeling and provide the dynamic inspiration for decorating; whether hung as a work of original art, draped over a sofa or table or beautifully covering your beds.

Always keep quilts out of direct sunlight and away from smoke and air vents. To hang
a quilt, simply baste a double layer casing or sleeve of muslin along the top of quilt, just under the binding and along the bottom of the casing. Slide a rod between the fabric casing and hang the rod on nails in the wall. It's great to change quilt displays from summer to winter, autumn to spring for quick decorating impact and to rest the quilts.

CLEANING: To air musty quilts, spread them out flat in the grass upside down in the shade. Gentle vacuuming with a portable hand-held vacuum removes surface dust or you may shake to remove loose dust. Sunshine will kill mildew and mold.

AVOID DRY CLEANING. To wash quilt, first test for color fastness by wetting a white cloth with water and rubbing some of the bright colors like the reds and yellows. If any color transfers to the white cloth, use one cup of white vinegar in the wash water or use a Dye Grabber Cloth by Carbona. Make any repairs necessary before washing. If fabrics are weak and disintegrating, first seek professional advise. You may need to baste wedding veil tulle over the fragile fabrics. Spot clean before washing.

Hand wash in washing machine or bathtub using Orvus or Quilt Wash and cool soft water on the Gentle Cycle. Gently agitate by hand, turning the machine off during the agitation cycles. Only let the machine add the water and spin it out. Heavily soiled quilts may require extra soaking and rinsings. Dry quilts by spreading flat on the grass on a hot day. If the quilt is thick, flip flop it every couple of hours to dry evenly. Or if you’re afraid the colors might fade on an early quilt, lay it in the shade. The ozone rays of the sun and chlorophyll of the grass will brighten colors. If you have no grass or dogs or it’s wintertime, lay the quilt on the carpet and turn on the ceiling fan or any fan and flip flop it to dry evenly. Always block the quilt out, pulling it to straight edges, and attach weights on corners if it’s windy.

STORAGE Spread all quilts flat out on a guest bed.
Or wrap quilts in washed unbleached muslin or sheet, NEVER PLASTIC, and store in living area of house, never a garage, attic or basement and never on bare wood or in a cardboard box unless it’s acid free. Fold in thirds lengthwise and then loosely roll down from the top. Refold yearly off center with muslin padding under creases so the fold lines don’t weaken the fabric.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

A Writer's Vision Literary Symposium

Thanks Lucinda Thierry for inviting me to speak at your Writer’s Vision Literary Symposium September 3rd and 4th in Oklahoma City about my four books and the 300 patriotic touring quilts with all profits going to provide quilts for wounded soldiers and families of the fallen.

Showed a replica of the Civil War Eagle Quilt made in 1862 which is touring with the "Thanking Our Troops--God Bless America Touring Quilts."

And I told the story of VietNam Veteran Jack Hayes I presented the full size reproduction of the Chenoweth Civil War Eagle Quilt to. He carried that quilt in and out of hospitals while he valiantly fought for his life. When the pain became to much to bear, Jack stroked the 3 dimensional eagle's wings as if they gave him courage to rise above his circumstances to higher levels of faith. When his spirits needed lifting, Jack traced the "Thank you Jack for your service" embroidered in the center of the quilt and realized that his sacrifice for his country was not in vain but documented in this tangible memorial.

Jack was wrapped in his beloved quilt when he was carried up on eagle's wings to even greater heights right into his loving heavenly Father's arms to receive his final reward--the shiny stars in his golden crowns.

Networked with lots of great African American authors & self-publishers. I salute the Dream Team for their community involvement in literacy awareness. Great fun & food and educational!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

September/October Patriotic Quilt Shows & Programs

September 9-11, 10 a.m.-5:00. The Quilting, Stitches and Craft Expos proudly presents the God Bless America Patriotic Quilt Exhibit at their Expo at the Sharonville Convention Center, 11355 Chester Rd, Cincinnati, OH, www.qscexpos.com, $8
September 10-11, Friday, 8am to 7pm , Saturday , 9am to 5pm . The Coastal Prairie Quilt Guild of Texas proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at its Binding Borders Around the World Quilt Show at the Stafford Centre, 1050 Cash Rd, Stafford, TX $6, Kshively@entouch.net
September 17-18, 9-4, 2010. The American Legion Auxiliary #46 proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at Upper Cumberland Quilt Festival at Trinity Assembly Church, and area, Algood, TN Sheila Rich, http://quilt-festival.com
September 18-19, 2010, 10-5 Saturday, 10-3 Sunday. The Herring Run Quilt Guild proudly exhibit the God Bless America Touring Quilts in their “With These Hands” Quilt Show at the Church Hill United Methodist Church, 11 Church St., Norwell, MA. www.HerringRunQuiltGuild.com, $6
September 20, 7:00 pm. The Norman Quilt Guild proudly presents Judy Howard’s Centennial Stitches—Oklahoma History in Quilts Trunk Show Program and her God Bless America Touring Quilts Exhibit at their meeting at the McFarlin Methodist Church, 419 S. University Blvd, Norman, OK
September 23-25, 9:00-5:00. The Ozark Piecemaker Quilt Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at their 2010 Quilt Celebration at 2738 S. Campbell, Springfield MO. $6. QuiltQueen1@sbcglobal.net

September 24-25, 10 am-6 pm, The Cabarrus Quilters Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at their “A Splash of Color” Quilt Show at the Cabarrus Arena & Events Center, 4551 NC Highway 49, Concord, NC, $4, 37 Vendors, 200 quilts, 2011 Calendars of Challenge quilts, Rebecca Watt, www.thequiltersstation.com

September 25, 10:30-4:30 The Dubach Quilt Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at their Quilt Show during its North Louisiana Chicken Festival at the Scott Hamilton Warehouse, 167 Hwy in Dubach, LA, $1, Jean Lowrey 318-777-0960

September 25-26, 2010, 9-5 Saturday and 9-4 Sunday, The Country Patchwork Quilt Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts during their 23rd annual Quilt Show, at YMCA, 740 East Yerby, Marshall, MO. www.CountryPatchworkQuilters.com, Donna@CountryPatchworkQuilters.com

October 1-3 Clein, TX pkpabor@pabor.net

October 2, 10 am-3 pm Judy Howard will display autograph quilts, speak and sign books at the 4th Annual Ancestors Fair at The Oklahoma History Center,

October 2 & 3, 2010. Sat 10-4, Sun 10-3. The Darting Needles Quilt Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at their “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Quilting” show at the Fox Valley Lutheran High School, 5300 N Meade St, Appleton, WI 54913, $5 dpluebke@sbcglobal.net

October 2-3, 10-5. The Belknap Mill Quilter’s Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at it’s Harvest of Quilts Show at the Conference Center at Lake Opechee in Laconia, NH. $5 Linda Sarette 603-524-9996

October 9-10, 10 am-6 pm Saturday, 10 am-5 pm Sunday, The Red River Quilt Guild proudly exhibits the God Bless America Touring Quilts at their “Quilting in the Falls” Show at the MPEC in Wichita Falls, TX,. $5 www.RRQG.net, LesliePenrose@hotmail.com, 740-782-3340

October 15-17, 2010, Chesapeake, VA

October 22-23, 9:00 am-4:00 pm. The Blount County Quilter’s Guild proudly exhibit the God Bless America Touring Quilts at it’s Quilt Show at 1225 Palisades Parkway, Oneonta, AL. $5, www.BlountCountyQuiltersGuild.com