Wednesday, 11 March 2009

real estate

Estate sales are a funny thing. They are more prevalent here (or in Seattle at least) than in Australia (well, Melbourne) where I have really only seen them for huge estates, mansions full of stuff. Anyway, they happen quite regularly here and I can't resist the opportunity to peer into someone else's life and maybe find myself a treasure.

The sales seem to fall into two categories - commercially run sales where someone has bought up an entire property (or I guess been contracted to sell it all) and sales run by the family themselves. The one that I went to last week was one of the latter and advertised itself as 'everything must go'. But that turned out to be everything except everything that I wanted. The little print in the old picture frame was her grandma's, she wanted to keep the spools of sewing cotton for something, the bicycle in the garage simply wasn't for sale. Ok, whatever.

What I did walk away with though was curiously the most amazing thing that I found - a quilt top.

It is machine sewn and very obviously hand done. I'm not sure how old it might be - there are some bold graphic fabrics in there but also some old-fashioned sackcloth prints. None of the corners match up and it's in pretty poor condition. Can you tell, I love it?

It's going to take a fair bit
of work to turn this into a quilt - there are tears in almost every block. I think that I'll have to put a backing on to stabilise it and start the mending from there. Any advice from quilters out there is most welcome. Then I am going to have a riot of a time choosing all the perfect thread colours to outline quilt each of the blocks. By hand. What an investment, eh? Pretty good for $3.


EmilyKate said...

You'e right, there's no real estate sales here in Melbourne! Only sales where an auctioneer rents an empty mansion in a tony suburb and puts lots of stock from lots of different deceased estates in there to sell... can you tell I've been to a few of those and been disappointed every time, LOL! I've always wanted to go to a proper US-style estate sale. That quilt is a really lovely find!

Angela said...


$3 well spent indeed!

Victoria said...

The quilt top is veryveryvery good!! Great find, I would be so happy to find that.
LOVED reading about the new pjs too.

Moorecat said...

In rural Australia, they're called clearing sales, and you can buy anything from a tractor down to a set of mixing bowls.

My Dad once bought a tractor from Mel Gibson's farm. My sister took great delight in sitting where Mel's backside might once have resided!

Anonymous said...

Hi, near as I can tell, the oldest fabrics in the quilt are from the late 1940's, early 1950's. It's a bit unusual pattern, the curved part outside the 9 patch is something I've never seen. Hope you can make it into something beautiful!