Interesting and Miscellaneous

This post covers several topics briefly. I hope you enjoy it.

1. As unbelievable as it sounds, it’s part of my job to look around online for all kinds of interesting things related to quilts, quilting and sewing. I come across the most amazing stuff.

toy Interesting and Miscellaneous

This antique tin toy is for sale on ebay right now. As much as I would love to own it, the starting bid of $3,450 kept me from bidding. Perhaps it’s in your budget? If so, get going.


sewing machine agenoria maxfield Interesting and Miscellaneous

2. I have a small collection of sewing machines, all kinds. But I don’t have anything even close to this. What can you even say about such a thing of beauty? Seen on the blog of Kit James, Fine Fettle.

vintage hex top Interesting and Miscellaneous

I got this vintage hand-pieced hexagon quilt top on ebay for a song.

3. I rarely get on ebay because when I do, I see things I think I need. Such was the case with this quilt top. Quiltmaker’s focus on hexagons a few issues back got me all fired up for hexies.

When it arrived (true confessions, I bought it), this top was even better than I had dared hope. I love it! It’s entirely hand pieced. I think it deserves to be hand quilted. What do you think?

hexies111 Interesting and Miscellaneous

I always enjoy studying old fabrics, and I was pretty sure the black and white print shown above and below looked familiar.

hexies222 Interesting and Miscellaneous

Denyse Schmidt ran through my head, so I googled and guess what I found?

 Interesting and Miscellaneous

This print was part of her Hope Valley collection for FreeSpirit. When I dug in my stash, I was delighted to find some! Who would have guessed I’d own some of the vintage fabric and some of the new fabric, too?! Pretty cool, huh? Fabric designers sometimes use out-of-copyright older fabrics and I wonder if that’s what was done here.

gardenchair Interesting and Miscellaneous

4. I’ve been on a couple of garden walks this summer and I love the vintage items people put in their gardens, like the chair above and the milk can below.

milkcan Interesting and Miscellaneous

People create such sweet vignettes in their gardens. I liked this sort of scarecrow-lady with flowers for her hair.

gardenlady Interesting and Miscellaneous

I started thinking about my own gardens and my own interests and realized it would be completely natural for me to have a sewing machine or two. In my gardens.

basethisone Interesting and Miscellaneous

I’m not the only one who has thought of it. Last week I saw this when I stopped at a garage sale across the street. It’s not really in a garden (more of a weedbed), but it was a similar idea. Of course I snuck over there and took a photo.

023 Interesting and Miscellaneous

And I found this one by googling. Doesn’t that look cool? All it needs is the actual sewing machine. It lives on a blog called Cornflower Blue Studio.

So I started looking for a junker that might be comfortable living in my garden, and this is what junk-luck brought to me within a few days. I was at a garage sale and, because she had lots of home-sewn items for sale, I asked if she perhaps had a vintage sewing machine. When her husband wandered in, she must have mentioned it to him, because just as I was getting in my car to leave, he shouted at me!

redeye1 Interesting and Miscellaneous

He asked if I wanted a sewing machine that would run or one that would not. I said I was interested in both types, and he led me just a few steps up the street to what he called his “salvage trailer” and pulled out this sorely neglected, sadly rusted Singer red-eye.

redeye2 Interesting and Miscellaneous

When I said, “How much?” he countered, “Whatcha wanna give me?” I didn’t want to be too cheap but let’s face it, it’s going to sit out in the weather, so I said “Ten bucks?”

redeye3 Interesting and Miscellaneous

And he took it. I’m a happy camper and I hope he was, too.

singer 66 redeye sewalot Interesting and Miscellaneous

Nevertheless, it made me feel bad because this is what a Singer red-eye should look like. I guess Mother Junk knows what she is doing because if my machine were any less bedraggled, I’d be tempted to restore it. As things are, I’ll be okay with putting it out in my garden, which was the whole idea in the first place.

Over this past weekend, I had another huge hit at a local garage sale. A post on my Find of the Decade upcoming!


About Diane Harris

I'm an editor for Quiltmaker magazine in Golden, Colorado, USA. For six years, I wrote pattern instructions, product reviews and how-to articles. Then I spent four years as QM's Interactive Editor, working to generate much of our online content. Now I'm back to patterns and how-tos, which is a great fit for me. I still love writing about quilt-related topics for Quilty Pleasures, and I always have my finger on the pulse of the quilting world. I teach a variety of quilt classes and give guild programs, too. Reach me by email:
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5 Responses to Interesting and Miscellaneous

  1. Judy says:

    Great post! It must be so much fun looking for all the interesting things that are out there.

  2. Claudia says:

    The sewing machine makes me sad. Wonder what stories it could tell? Why is it called a “red eye”? That is a new expression to me.

    There’s been lots of chatter about hexies over at lately.

  3. Terri says:

    Cute post! My dream is to have a working treadle machine. Someday…

  4. Barb Johnson says:

    Your hexie find is fantastic! I love the way that partial hexagons were used to straighten out the block edges so that they could be set with the green diamonds. I may have to steal the layout idea for the hexies that I’m working on. And you are right, it definitely is begging for hand quilting!

  5. Lynda Parker says:

    What a great layout on your hexagon top! They spin. Love it!

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