Monday, October 29, 2018

Oh, My Stars! (May Belle Project Tour)

"Oh, My Stars!" quilt by Deonn Stott, 60" x 60"
My friend Jodi has designed the cutest fabric!  Her design inspiration was her grandmother, May Belle.  You can read all about her here: May Belle, and here: Design inspiration.  Aren't these lovely?

May Belle by Jodi Nelson of Pleasant Home for Penny Rose Fabrics, a division of  Riley Blake Designs
My project today is reminiscent of my own Grandmothers.  I can picture them in their respective kitchens wearing an apron, as did every other grandma of that era.  It also brought to mind those little kitchen towels embroidered with the days of the week.

My Great-Grandma Hulda Hoopes was a quiltmaker.  She lived in the little mountain village of Afton in Star Valley, Wyoming.  In fact, people around town would bring their scraps to her to cut up and she would make quilt tops first for the war effort, then for charity quilts for her church Relief Society group.  She did this for over 50 years. I recall her sewing space on her back porch, a little pot-belly coal stove and a little black sewing machine with piles of squares stacked up, ready to piece together.  She died in 1980, but I think of her often as I sew.

Oh, My Stars! is based on a block design from a quilt I saw while visiting the Star Valley Quilt Trail last August.  Star Valley is also where my Dad was born in a log cabin in 1939, and it was fun to visit relatives and attend this great little quilt show.  This quilt really caught my eye!  It was a wacky quilt -- wild fabrics with a cheddar-yellow background!  Possibly dated from the 1960's or 70's.  Plus, the design really stuck in my mind and I used it for one of my daily block design challenges in my EQ (Electronic Quilt) software and recreated the pattern.  Pretty crazy, right?

I love how the contrast of the background with the prints brings out a secondary starburst pattern around the odd blocks.  Oh, and you can actually see it if the prints aren't too crazy.

The way I made my quilt allowed for some creativity within the large background squares in the center of each block, and I found the perfect little vintage embroidery pattern to use.  Meet Penny!  She goes through different tasks every single day!  Washing, Ironing, Shopping, Gardening, Cleaning, Cooking, and Rest Day.  So dang cute. 

And since there are not nine days in a week, (unfortunately - I could use a couple extra days!)  I filled in the extra blocks with a few little flowers and birds.

"Oh, My Stars!" takes its name from the star-like blocks with the secondary starburst design in the background, along with that old-fashioned saying of "Oh, my stars and garters!" (Oh my goodness!) that my grandparents used to say, plus the fact that I saw the inspiration quilt in beautiful Star Valley, Wyoming.  I think my Great-Grandma would love it!

So there it is.  Not an apron or dishtowels, but reminiscent of Grandma's kitchen.  Easy-to-make with a couple of my Instant Blocks techniques for fast and fabulous half squares and flying geese
The digital pattern is available HERE, or get a hard copy HERE
Optional hand-embroidery/applique' patterns for Penny's busy week are also available in digital format HERE, or as a paper copy HERE.

Thanks for coming by!  May Belle is available in quilt shops now.  Try Pine Needles for full lines of everything RBD, in store or online.  Then check in on the following couple of Monday mornings to see more May Belle project showcases!

10/29 Deonn @ Quiltscapes <<
11/5 Amanda @ Jedi Craft Girl
11/12 Andy @ A Bright Corner


  1. My son's family likes in Star Valley. Thanks for sharing your new Quilt! Cute fabrics.

  2. That is really pretty. I love that cheddar one too.

  3. What a great quilt! I love the addition of the embroidery!


So happy you stopped by for a visit! Thank you!