Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric... Welcome to the Patriotic Quilter where I like to share all things quilty as well as red, white, and blue! Please feel free to look around and enjoy yourself! I would love to hear from you.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

My First Retreat Project and a Major Event

Hi Everyone,

As soon as I arrived at the retreat, I jumped right in working on my first project.  I've been really excited about this pattern since it came out last fall.

The pattern is called Lincoln's Promise and is by Patchalot.  Patchalot is the company name for Marcie Patch, from whom I took a class a year ago last fall and has now become a good blog/instagram/facebook friend.  You can find it here.

Marcie made her version in black and cream and red.  She used a pack of Pam Buda's American Gothic for the blacks and creams.  I had my own fat quarter collection of the same fabrics and planned to use them.  Then I had an inspirational flash!

In my stash, I had a fat quarter of this fabric.  It is from the Gettysburg line by Kensington Studios for Quilting Treasures.
In the entire fat quarter, there was only one complete portrait of Lincoln, but it would be the right size for my need, so I fussy-cut it.

I used triangles of this wonderful red paisley fabric to make a square-in-a-square block.  I love how the paisley plays with the frame and other trim around the portrait!

I didn't think black was going to work with this as well as brown, so I made the decision to change to brown fabrics and pulled as many as would match from my stash and also a bunch of cream background fabrics.  I did the precutting at home and packed up the pattern, this center block and my other pieces into a baggie for the retreat.

I did get to make four flying-geese units, but the rest of the quilt top was half triangle squares.  I felt like I would be trimming HSTs all day!

Once I got them all trimmed and ready to sew, I did get a little frustrated with the seams.  I really don't like pressing points into the seam allowance, so I fussed and clipped many of the seams so there wouldn't be big lumps of bulk on the back.  
I also "pinwheeled" as many of the seams as possible.

Finally, by the end of the night, I had my first project complete!  (I just had to add the outer red border the first thing the next morning.)

Lincoln's Promise
(I'm not exactly sure what Marcie had in mind about "the Promise" but I think Lincoln is promising that you will spend ages trimming HSTs!)

I love how Marcie has you scatter a few red triangles among the brown ones.  I really love this quilt and can't wait to get it quilted and bound.

As for the Major Event, the retreat was overlaid with a bit of a family crisis.  My younger sister was expecting and the baby was due on March 4.  It had been a difficult pregnancy.  With both this one, and her first (resulting in my 8 year old niece) she suffered from terrible morning sickness for the full duration of the pregnancy.  But the day before the retreat began, she had a routine OB appointment, and her blood pressure was so high that the doctor admitted her to the hospital.  They began IV medication and got the pressure to come down a bit.  We hoped that would be good and she could come home.  However, when they tried the oral medication, she was so sick that she couldn't keep it down.  Meanwhile, they were running other tests (I'm not going into all the personal details here) and it became obvious that she had preeclampsia.   By Friday night, her condition was deteriorating too much and the decision was made that even at 5 1/2 weeks early, the baby had to come out.  They induced, as the doctors thought a regular birth would be better than surgery and on Saturday around noon, my little nephew was born!  

He weighed 5 lbs, 11 oz and was 20" long.  He was such a little miracle!  He needed time under the warmers, but spent the first night in the regular nursery and didn't have to be in the NICU at all.  We were so relieved.

He was discharged from the hospital on Monday, but my sister was still having issues with her blood pressure.  (If you remember and are Downton Abbey fans, Preeclampsia is what caused Sybil to die after having her daughter.)  My sister finally got to go home yesterday afternoon! 

I was sharing all of this with the ladies at the retreat and we all were praying and we all celebrated, and we all cooed over the pictures.  It was nice to have support through it all.  Quilters are the most wonderful people out there!

Next time I'll be talking about my second retreat project.

Have a great day!


  1. Beautiful quilt top and gorgeous little nephew! Congrats to the whole family. :-)

  2. Beautiful quilt and quite a handsome nephew! So pleased all are doing well.

  3. What a little cutie, and so good to have a happy ending.

  4. JoAnne, your Lincoln quilt is perfect. Great idea to fussy cut Lincoln's portrait!

    Reading your story of your sister reminded me so much of my first pregnancy. I was sick the entire time and I too had preeclampsia. I spent 10 days in the hospital before they decided the baby needed to come out and she was 5 lb 11 oz but only 18 inches long. We both then spent 6 more days in the hospital before I was stabilized.
    I'm glad your sister is ok and the baby was fine! Being around friends at a time like that sure is a blessing...

    Looking forward to seeing your other projects.


  5. What great news and so happy everything worked out on both events. Love the look of Lincoln and a great quilt.....and that little fellow looks so cute and perhaps happy to be in the world. Glad your sister is doing better.

  6. Love your Lincoln fussy cutting for this. A lot of HSTs do make for fretting seams. Congrats on the new addition to the family. Glad all worked out fine. I had 3 (all premies under 5#) - and it was a great to enjoy them 'small' for a long time.

  7. A great idea to use Lincoln in the center. He draws the eye into he quilt. Nice job!

    Your nephew is precious. I hope your sister is feeling better each day and that the Dr. can get that BP down.

  8. What a precious blessing for your sister and the family! He is a cutie! Love your Lincoln quilt too...great job!

  9. Oh JoAnne your quilt is really quite spectacular and the baby...well he is absolutely perfect. Tiny but so sweet! His colouring and that face! Good to hear your sister is well and now home. Prayer changes things!

  10. Your Lincoln's Promise turned out perfect--love your fussy cutting. Your little nephew is pretty cute too! I'm glad he and your sister are doing well--that was a scary situation!

  11. Brilliant use of that piece of fabric - I have been loving medallion quilts lately and that's sorta what this one is...... Cute new baby - so amazing that things turned out well for everyone in that scary situation. I'm enjoying reading about your retreat experiences and projects.

  12. Grateful for the healthy baby and I hope your sister continues to feel better.

    I love your quilt....I knew I would when I saw the fussy cut Lincoln on Instagram. Can't wait to see the next one!

  13. Love your Quilt ! Your fussy cut Lincoln is just perfect for this quilt . Just GORGEOUS ! SO glad that your Sister and baby are doing fine

  14. He's adorable... what's his name??? So glad that your sister is doing fine... how scary for everyone!
    Lincolns's Promise is lovely... great fussy cut of him for the center of the quilt... how clever of you!

  15. What a handsome little boy! So sorry to hear your poor sister had to go thru all that awful stuff but am so glad that everything worked out well... and that she and her son are home safely. Congratulations to the entire family!

    Love your Lincoln's Promise quilt... it turned out beautifully!

  16. Good call revising the quilt fabrics. This came together beautifully!
    What a blessing that things worked out for your sister and nephew. He is a cutie!

  17. Your Lincoln's Promise is beautiful - the colours work beautifully and the extra time spent 'fussing at the back' will be well worth it. Congratulations to your sister and family on the safe (finally) arrival of your gorgeous wee nephew. Great to hear your sister is now home. Wonderful that you were with friends at the time.

  18. I love your choices with the Lincoln's Promise quilt. What a fantastic fabric for the center!
    Congratulations on your new nephew. We are so lucky to have the knowledge that we have today, compared to poor, fictional Sybil. Best wished to your sister.

  19. JoAnne, Lovely quilt! I'm with you though; managing the bulk of intersecting seams is a challenge. I always have trouble with them when I machine quilt on my DSM, so I make an effort to flatten them as much as possible. Makes a much nicer finish :)

    Congratulations on your new nephew and best wishes to your sister- so glad everyone's okay!

  20. Your new little nephew is so previous! Congratulations to your sister and her family. What a relief that everyone is doing ok now! On another note, you always have a knack for adding just the right touch to give a quilt that special something, and you've done it again with the fussy cut Lincoln! Great job!

  21. He is beautiful! Congratulations to your sister, and to you Auntie Jo-Anne. He was such a good size for 5.5 weeks early. He may have been a 10 pounder if he'd gone full term!