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Finishing a Vintage Quilt Top

Last March, a neighbor brought a vintage quilt top to me, asking if I could turn it into a finished quilt.

As you can see, the top was a Grandma’s Flower Garden. Some investigation showed that it was all hand-pieced and that there were multiple places where a gap had opened up in the piecing. Further, there were some fabrics that were not well-suited for quilting (very large weave) and were falling apart.

I thought that the best plan was probably to find a yellow to match the quilt and use it as a layer under the whole pieced top. Basically, the whole vintage piece would become an appliqué patch. After checking with a few quilty friends, who agreed that my plan was a good idea, I set to work. I bought 6.5 yards of RJR’s solid “Banana Cream Pie.” Setting aside 0.5 yard for binding, I combined the 6 yards into a large rectangle and then set about pressing the pieced part of the quilt, and basting it to the background fabric. It took an absolutely epic amount of time!

From there, I laid out backing and batting and basted again. There were a lot of pins in the quilt! I quilted in a simple stipple as it allowed me the flexibility to tack the edges closely and add extra stitching around holes and other problem areas.


Here’s the finished top!


Binding was the same yellow as the background.

I handed off the quilt to my neighbor a few days before a special event and she gave it as a gift to her daughter. Everyone was very excited to see the quilt finished, 50+ years after it was begun!

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Interesting! I have a vintage top, but it needs some seams resewn, but I’m definitely going to check and see if backing with a similar background would also be good. Thanks for sharing…

  2. Thanks for the explanation on how you finished this quilt. I have 2 Grandmother’s Flower Garden quilts from a great grandmother that I was asked to finish for 2 relatives. You are giving me courage to tackle the project!

  3. i love how you finished this…and i really love that the holes and problems areas were left in. makes it some much more interesting in my mind. 🙂

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