Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Friday Fabric - Georgia Bonesteel

Earlier this week, I had to drive in to the "big city" of Baton Rouge for an appointment.  It didn't take as long as I thought and I figured I would make the most of my extra hours and meander back home.  Along the way, I revisited one of my favorite thrifts.  It's at the end of a long stretch of highway in a total generic, indiscriminate town.  (oddly enough, next to the most amazing Mexican restaurant with 4 Cuban dishes to die for...but more on that later!)

It actually looked quite picked over, as I walked in.  I surveyed where they usually keep the fabric and there was a mere 1/2 yard.  Kind of bummed, I kept busy looking at this and that - but kept gravitating like a satellite to the racks that usually hold at least a yard of two of fabric.  About my third pass - I see it - poking out...then another...and another!  Lots of yardage of beautiful vintage fabric!  I'm still in the process of sorting and photographing each find - they should all be up on my Etsy shop in the coming weeks.

My favorite, however, was this sweet panel fabric
https://www.etsy.com/listing/197420696/vintage-wamsutta-green-calico-floral
I didn't know much about it other than I just liked it and it had a coordinate fabric with it!
https://www.etsy.com/listing/197420696/vintage-wamsutta-green-calico-floral
Sweet and simple, its a cheater quilt type panel (actually, two identical pillow panels are on a 1/2 yard - allowing you to cut and sew one pillow with matching sides or two pillows, using the coordinating fabric.

So, once at the shop - I begun the research process.  The selvage had a name I did not recognize, Georgia J Bonesteel.  Well, shame on me.  She, it turns out, is one the most respected quilters and is still in the game -- she even has a blog!
She had great 80's hair and this quilt - isn't it super similar to the pillow panel she designed!  Photo credit: Flickr
Not only, had I discovered what a legend she is but in my research I learned two things as they pertain to me.
First she designed this pillow panel too...
I grew up with this; we must of purchased it already quilted and made into a pillow.  I remember being so enchanted by this sweet fabric scene.  I think by the time we changed couches and the pillow was cast off, I plucked it for my room (too bad I've lost track of it!)

Secondly, as noted on her website, she had a shop in the French Quarter in New Orleans selling small handbags.  Only a mere hour from here.  It was called Cajun Quilters; I sincerely wish I had found it but maybe that's where my favorite pillow originated!

Anywho, I'm so happy to have a home for these two designs in the shop.  You can find the panel fabric and coordinate in my Etsy shop.  I have a nice stock of yardage of each which pleases me to no end to provide something that I hope will become someone else's favorite pillow and maybe inspire them to a life of crafting and simple pleasures.


 --Lisa LeBlanc

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