Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Farmers Wife WIP

So a while back, I saw a ton of quilters online participating in the Farmers Wife Quilt ALong. Well, I loved the idea and concept of it, but didn't really want to do it by myself (since the quilt along was kind of already over). My mom and I have been kicking around the idea of doing a quilt together but making our own--- a mini quilt along, if you will. I had the idea of us making the Farmers Wife Quilt Samplers. We both really  love history and this was a neat concept. Mom loved the idea, and I talked her into using Jeni Baker's fabric line, In Color Order, for our samplers.
They are teeny tiny blocks, finishing off at around 6 to 6 and half inches - with lots of little pieces. There are two blocks per letter, so it's really fun to read the letters that these women wrote.
The whole premise of the book is these letters that farmer's wives wrote in response to a newspaper editor, asking them if they would want their daughter's to marry a farmer and have the lives that they do. The letters were written in the 1920s. It's such a neat way to read their thoughts and views - and how many of their points, are still valid in today's world.

Since the fabric didn't come out and hit stores until February, we've just now started. Mom is much further along than me, but I"m doing my best to catch up! We ambitiously decided that our goal is 10 blocks a month, so it'll take us roughly a year or so to make all of the blocks.Mom and I decided to make the blocks in the order of the letters (which means they are out of order numerically).

I've decided to incorporate a little bit of selvage into my quilt. I love the fact that we are using a fabric line inspired by vintage pyrex (from a different era than the Farmers Wives letters) produced in an entirely different era. I guess there's just too much of an English major in me not to see the beauty in that kind of linkage.... which is why I'm keep bits and pieces of selvage. Plus, it looks kind of cool.

First Letter: "Living in God's Open Air" written by Mrs. J.E.F from Valley County, Montana
"I would have my daughter bring of the very best to that farmy home - the best o fmusic, books, pretty clothes, dainty things for her house. I am speaking of the little things of life which really make up the most of it; big events only happen once in a while."

The first letter's blocks are:
#26 Cut Glass Dish
Farmers Wife
#54 Kitchen Woodbox
Farmers Wife

Second Letter: "No Safer Road to Travel" written by Mrs. E.M.L in Furnas County, Nebraska
"To wake up in the early morning to the bird calls, the animal greetings, i better than the best symphony concert every played. To see the sun climb out of bed and reach rosy fingers to pick up the dew drops from field and meadow, and to watch the joyous greeting of all nature, in the summer time, is worth more than silver and gold can buy."

The second letter's blocks are:
#24 Country Path
Farmers Wife
#79 Silver Lane
 Block #79 Silver Lane

Here are my first four completed blocks, all together! 
First Four Blocks

I really love how they look together, and I'm so excited about this project! :) 

I'm linking up my new long term WIP to this week's WIP parties! :)


  1. They are beautiful! I am inspired to do a Farmer's Wife quilt now. Just lovely in modern fabrics.

  2. That sounds really interesting. I love history like that; I have read several published women's journals of journey;s west and ranching life. I think I need to check this one out, too, and get a little sewing on while I am at it. Very inspiring :)

  3. These are looking great, Rachel! You are reminding me I need to actually do something with my FW blocks. :)

  4. Awesome blocks! I have that book but have yet to make a block from it. :(

  5. What a great idea for a little quilt along :) I love that you chose Color Me Retro! I was also an English major and know where you're coming from. This is going to be gorgeous!

  6. Color Me Retro is such a fresh choice for the FW blocks. I bought the book and haven't done a thing since then - like a year ago!

  7. Hi there. Found you from the link up. Your quilt will be lovely. Enjoy your new project.

  8. I love your blocks! I just started working on my FW quilt as well. I posted my first batch of blocks on my blog today.

  9. Rachel, so glad you and your mom decided to start! They are such fun little blocks and using Color Me Retro is going to make them amazing! Hope you are able to keep up on your goal, I can't wait to see more! Thanks for linking up!

  10. i talked my mom into making a FW quilt, too. i'm helping her with the math to make them into 12" blocks, but mine are 6". have fun!

  11. Love your color choice . Will make for a very interesting "modern" quilt. I am doing mine in the Civil War fabrics...29 more to go ....I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Looking forward to putting all the blocks together.

  12. Hey Rachel! My mom and I are doing the FW quilt together too :) We're both using mostly stash fabrics. Fun to see another mother daughter team tackling the quilt! We take turns picking 5 blocks each month to sew and text each other pictures since we're far apart right now. Love the colors!

  13. Beautiful and inspiring. I'm "going it alone" too. Started this quilt last year in March. But now with linking up with Craft Sew Create, it doesn't feel quite as lonely as before.
    I love your idea on the fabrics. Mine is a true scrap quilt in that there is no rhyme or reasons to the different fabrics that I'm using. They are all just in the same shades. They very much differ in designers etc.


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