"Buttons and patches and the cold wind blowing,
The days pass quickly when I am sewing"
~Author Unknown

Friday, October 30, 2009

They followed the star...

Do you have any favorite Christmas stories, books, films, cards, etc. that influence how you look upon the Christmas holiday? I loved watching the child's animated film of The Little Drummer Boy when I was very young. It has now influenced a second quilt in my life. I love the look of Christmas cards showing images like those of this painting by Giotto di Bondone called the Adoration of the Magi. So a few years ago, I created a quilt top using a paper pieced Bethlehem Star. I used fabrics which to me gave the same glow as these beautiful old paintings that many send out each year on their Christmas cards.

This quilt was one of two that I choose to complete before the end of the year. The top was waiting to be sandwiched and quilted for a number of holidays now. I am so happy to say that I just sewed the binding and label on the quilt this afternoon and it is now finished in time to enjoy with the upcoming holidays in December. I am really pleased with the results. I used some vintage trim I purchased in the Cotswolds in a haberdashery on the green border. By sewing this into the mitered corners, I was able to create a look of a frame around the patchwork stars.

I hand quilted this with gold metallic thread using larger quilt stitches so the thread is nicely visible. It is a 31 inch square quilt which will work well either on a table top or hanging on the wall.

Does anyone remember the story by O. Henry called Gift of the Magi? I want to leave you with a final quote from this beautiful story...

"The magi, as you know, were wise men--wonderfully wise men--who brought gifts to the Babe in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents. Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication. And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house. But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. O all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the magi."


Nancy said...

Since I was talking to you while you made the label, I was waiting to see the finish on your blog. It is very pretty and the colors are very you.
Now, do we need to go back to the Cotswolds for more trim. I bet we do.
I am longing to go to England again, what do you think?
You never had ONE thing you loved at Christmas, YOU LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT IT.
Love youuuuuuu, Mom

Pondside said...

I've always loved The Gift of the Magi - what a sweet post today, Heidi. I'd say that one of my favorite stories is one of the most famous - The Night Before Christmas. This year I've bought a version illustrated by one of my favorite illustrators, Jan Brett.

DonnaTN said...

Your quilt is beautiful! There was a made for TV Christmas movie put out in the 70's, I think, called The House Without a Christmas Tree. It starred Jason Robards and Mildred Natwick. It may not be around any more, but I have a video of it from a replay some time in the 90's. It is one of my favorites! It is also fun to watch because my copy has commercials from so long ago.

onlymehere said...

This quilt is truly stunning. It looks so much like a quilt class being taught here called (I believe) Bali Stars but I didn't have the money to take it this time around...maybe next time. I have a weakness for stars in quilts and I find everything about this truly beautiful. I've never put labels on my quilts. Hmmm, I probably should start doing that.

angelasweby said...

Hi Heidi,
I'm not suprised you chose this beautiful quilt as one you wanted to finish. I can only imagine that it quietly nudged you every now and again to remind you that there wasn't much time and to hurry if you wanted to enjoy it's loveliness this Christmas. It really is a feast for the eyes with it's intricate star shapes and wonderful borders. I just adore the fabric in the border.

What an interesting and sweet story Heidi. I've never heard it before but just found it and read it. there's a lesson there, that's for sure :>)
Warm hugs Angela.

Anonymous said...

HI Heidi.
Wat een mooie warme kleuren,ik denk dat hij in het echt nogbeter uit komt,volgende week show it please.
De tijd voor en rond Kerst vind ik ook altijd heel gezellig warm,en sfeervol ik kijk er nu al naar uit.Zie je woensdag knuffel Joke.

mainely stitching said...

I love that O Henry story! And The Little Drummer Boy. And your quilt!

Tammy said...

Lovely story...BEAUTIFUL quilt Heidi!
Congrats on another finish :)

Siobhán said...

What a gorgeous quilt, Heidi! Congrats on the finish. I love that Little Drummer Boy animated show, too, and my childhood best friend actually gave me a DVD of it a few years ago! :) We used to wait eagerly for the animated shows each year, especially A Year Without a Santa Claus. Ah, good memories. I think one of my favorite stories was The Grinch--because of the underlying message, that it's not about the gifts.

Saskia said...

You get some work done.. I have UFO's and UFO's. Can I bring them to you???
I was at a gardenstore for more plants for my garden, and I walked through the christmasdecorations.
Love the season, with all the scented candles, warm tea, christmas music or my favorit storie and movie "a Christmas Carol". You know the end, but I always enjoy it. Not al versions though.
my favorite version of all time is the one made in 1984 featuring the incomparable George C. Scott as Scrooge.
I see you on wednesday, and I'm chancing my working day's.
So maybe we can have a cup of tea someday soon.

Cindy at her Country Home said...

Lieverd, ben er helemaal stil van! (mijn man vraagt hoe je dat voor elkaar hebt gekregen...) Wat een prachtige post, HEERLIJK! X Cin

Christine said...

Your quilt is beautiful Heidi.
I had a favourite advent calender that I brought out every year. I knew what was behind all of the windows, but I didn't care. I've still got it, but its too fragile to use now

Margaret said...

Lovely post and lovely quilt and super label Heidi.

Like you I have always loved Christmas. I remember loving to watch The Twelve Days of Christmas on TV along with all those great black & whites.

At our churches' 2001 Christmas dinner in Santa Rosa we were treated to the reading of a wonderful story by Susan Wojciechowski 'The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey' - beautiful. Do you know it?

How are you doing Heidi? Hope we can get together again next month.

hugs, Margaret

Brigitte said...

Oh Heidi, what a wonderful quilt this is. When I enlarge the picture I can see the gold thread sparkle in some places. It must look so gorgeous in real life.

Carolien said...

Hello Heidi,

You did it! Congratulations! I loved to see that quilt last week, it is truly a magical star quilt. BEAUTIFUL! (Want to make that star too, sssssshttt, am I getting addicted now?
I finished our 2 tops, having a bad cold and all (hope you didn't catch it!!!), so the quilting can begin. I will show it on my blog later.

Groetjes voor jou en Jos & Dagi natuurlijk.
Hugs, Carolien

P.S. Little birdie is feeling himself very much at home here :)

Anonymous said...

Die sterrenquilt is erg mooi, mooie warme kleuren.

DebbieSFL said...

My favorite is Dickens" A Christmas Carol. I watch it every year (as many versions) as I can and this year I want to read it again.

corry said...

Wat een mooie quilt, prachtig gebruik van kleuren ook. Deze quilt krijgt vast een mooi plaatsje met Kerst.

anneke said...

ik geloof dat m'n eerste berichtje niet is blijven staan. daarom: mooi plaatje laat je zien en wat een mooie quilt erbij! een dergelijk plaatje heb ik een keer geborduurd, moet ik nog eens laten zien...

Rhondi said...

Hi Heidi
I'm so glad you told me about this new blog. I love to see what beautiful projects you are working on. I don't love Christmas at all but this year I am going to try to enjoy it.
Hugs, Rhondi

Linda said...

Heidi...your quilt is just breath taking, a lovely finish to enjoy this holiday season.

This time of year, especially Christmas is my favorite time of year. I have lots of traditions I've enjoyed for many years. I love to re-read all my little Christmas books, hoiday tea, The Nutcracker ballet and lots more. I've alway loved the story of the Little Drummer Boy and for many years that was the theme for our cards...I hope it is one of the specials on TV this year....hugs, Linda

Jeanne said...

It's a lovely quilt Heidi and congratulations on finishing it finally so you can enjoy it this season. Love the music on your blog - then I saw it was by Thomas Newman. I believe he is the same composer that did the soundtrack to Little Women (version with Winona Ryder) - which is a favorite CD of mine. I never get tired of it. I will have to look for more of his music.