Friday, February 18, 2011


Today's quilt makes us think about shape as an element of design. Mary Vaughan began with Kaffe Fassett's adaptation* of a coverlet from the 19th century.  However, Mary has taken the design to a whole new level by choosing a brilliant white-on-red color scheme, and by filling the quilt with shapes of all kinds.

Red-and-white appliqué quilt, by Mary Vaughan, at Fun With Barb and Mary

The quilt has been personalized with shapes that include cats, birds, squirrels, spools, dresses, pears, skeleton keys, wine glasses, fleur-de-lys, angels with trumpets, a moon and stars, forks and spoons, and the initials, 'm' and 'V'. Some of the pieces can be seen in the work-in-progress photo below.

Mary explains that the three members of her group each did their interpretation of the quilt. Mary chose to do hers in red and white without a border; her quilt received honorable mention at the 2009 NJ State Quilt Show.  Barb's quilt, called Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, won best appliqué at the NJ State Show the year it was finished.  Susan's quilt is yet to be unveiled.

Image credits and additional links:  The images are shown with the generous permission of Mary Vaughan.  At her original blog, called MissMaryMadeIt, you can read her 2009 posts about her quilting and thread decisionsultimate quilting design,  and quilt show award.
*The Kaffe Fassett Folk Art Quilt was published in Kaffe Fassett's Museum Quilts by Taunton Press.


  1. The reds of the mid-1800s did not run and fade. But today's reds? I'm always curious as to what quilters do with today's red dyed fabric to make them run-proof. Are some fabs better than others? Are some anti-run products fool-proof?

  2. This is an amazing quilt!!! I love it.

  3. Re the fading of red dyed fabric: that is an excellent question, as we have read some horror stories. A lot of quilters swear by Retayne Color Fixative, For additional prevention, people are using color catcher sheets. Here are two more posts: and Hope to hear from other quilters on this important subject !

  4. I love this quilt, it reminds me of paper cutting.

    My mother always used to say to dissolve salt in the wash water to stop the red running, I can't remember if it worked. I usually pre-wash most of my fabrics and still get some running mainly blues and reds (must remember the salt trick next time).

  5. What a beautiful quilt, and meaningful for the quilter! I've seen photos of antique quilts with many shapes on them and have thought of doing something similar, but I never followed through (Too many ideas). I might start a list of shapes that I would like on my own quilt.
    I've been wanting to say thanks to you for the quilts and descriptions that you share with your readers. Yours is one of my favorite blogs.

  6. Another stunning quilt. I love that all the shapes are mirror imaged except the lower left and right corners! Very creative.


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