For the Record

By Mary Covey

Most quilters are drawn to the warmth and beauty of antique quilts. We like to collect and display them whenever possible. Many of these quilts have intricate hand stitching, unusual fabrics, and are made from patterns with long forgotten names. Fabric historians and journals written by the quilters have helped in documenting information about many antique quilts that are parts of museum collections. But what about quilts that you find at garage sales, flea markets, and antique stores? Do you ever wonder who the maker was, what was the name of the pattern, or how old is the quilt? I do.

3 Ways to Take Care of Antique Quilts #quilting #marycoveydesigns

Antique quilt from the 1930’s.

The block above is from a quilt made in the 1930’s. I know this because several of the blocks in the quilt have the year embroidered on them. So while we know approximately when it was made, the name of the maker, the name of the owner, the pattern name, and the occasion for which it was made are all a mystery. I have written a previous post on labeling your quilts, which should be a part of any quilt making process, but have you ever thought of making a record keeping system for your quilts?

The easiest way to keep a record of information about your quilts is to develop a basic form and fill it out each time you make a quilt. It can be something as simple as an 8 1/2″ x 11″ sheet of paper or as elaborate as a binder system made specifically for a quilt maker’s record keeping.  Many of my friends use a spiral bound notebook that costs about a dollar that you can purchase just about any where. My favorite way is to create this document as part of an electronic file and save it on my computer.

The following is a list of information to include in your record:

  • Project or quilt number. Assign each project or quilt a number when you start. Then fill in the information as your work progresses.
  • Name. This is not necessary but most quilters do name their projects.
  • Pattern name and manufacturer. An example would be – “Happy Birthday Baby” pattern designed by Mary Covey from the book “Celebrations” published by Martingale & Company 2002.
  • Piecing. Was the quilt pieced by hand or machine? Was it made by one person or several? Be sure to include everyone’s name.
  • Quilting.  Record whether the quilt was hand or machine quilted and by whom.
  • Special information. Record if the quilt has appeared in any shows or publications. In each instance, record the name of the show/publication, date, awards won or page number.
  • Quilt owner. Even if you are making the quilt for yourself, make sure you record who is the owner. You may think everyone knows who you made the quilt for but unless you write it down, nobody will. If you are giving the quilt as a gift, make sure this information is on the label.
  • Maker’s notes. This is where I like to record the story behind the quilt. What was the inspiration for making the quilt – a wedding, a birthday, a new baby, a gift for a special friend?
  • Pictures. Take a photograph of your quilt or project. If you keep a paper record write the number of the project on the back of the photo in case it gets separated for the recorded sheet. Photos can be easily added to electronic files and saved.

Remember it is never too late to start keeping a record of your quilts. Chances are you know who you gave a quilt to or you might even still own them.  Start taking pictures and recording the history of as many of them as you can. You’ll be glad you did.



Studio Redo

By Mary Covey

Organization is not always my strong suit. Just like the tide, being organized comes and goes for me. Things are neat, orderly and in place when the tide of creating comes in bringing with it a new mess. Time for a studio redo.  Those of you who follow me on Pinterest know I have a board of beautifully organized studio spaces and craft rooms. I found a great post on Everything; Craft Room Makeover -StudioPebbles  all about studio makeovers that I am re-posting here. Enjoy!

Craft Room Makeover – Studio Pebbles
By Kim Layton


This craft room makeover will give you tons of inspiration to make your crafty space all your own.  The room was already functional and cute, but now it’s simply amazing!  Who wouldn’t love a creative space that’s this beautiful?!

Jennifer from Studio Pebbles was blessed to work with Target to design something that fit her style and could be done without spending a fortune.


I love how there’s a few spots to sit and work on projects.  You could even leave one in-progress project on a table and go update your Etsy shop on the computer at your desk.  I hate having to clean up when I’m in the middle of something creative.  It ruins my crafty vibes…you know what I mean?

The colors, the style, the quote on the wall…I LOVE it all!

Visit Studio Pebbles and see all the fabulous photos including lots of before shots…AMAZING!


Pretty, pretty, pretty!


Visit Studio Pebbles on Etsy for adorable printables like these 3×4 cards!  These would be perfect for your Project Life books or scrapbooks!

Jennifer is super creative!  Keep up with her beautiful blog right here and you won’t miss any of her inspiring projects.

Still want more craft room inspiration?  Check out our Craft Studio Section for hundreds of ideas!


You won’t want to miss on of our most popular posts full of craft room ideas you’ll love!

Have you made any changes to your crafty space lately?  I’d love to hear about it!

Have an inspiring week!


#organization #craftroom #DIY


How to De-Clutter Your Work Space

By Mary Covey

Tips and Tricks

Organize your stash –

I have always considered myself a pretty organized person. In my previous life, everything you did had to be documented to perfection. “A place for everything and everything in it’s place”.  Then I started quilting. At first I followed my work motto to include quilting. But after kids left home and it was just John and I, all I had to do was close the door to the quilting room and no one would see the mess. I would pick up things and store them neatly from time to time until my next project. This was not a very good system. Instead of using precious free time to sew I was looking for things and picking up my mess from the last project. So I decided to put my work practices back into my quilting.

Here a few tips that helped me make a place for everything (i.e. de-clutter your work space):

Organized supplies

How to Organize Your Supplies –

1. Downsize your stash the same way you clean out your closet. Donate the fabric that you will never use to a charity that makes donation quilts like Quilts of Valor or Hearts and Hands.

2. Organize your fabric. I organize mine by color. Some of my friends organize their fabric by type. An example would be all the flannels together, all the batiks together, etc. If you don’t have a lot of space use stackable, clear storage boxes.

3. When I am finished with a project, I cut leftover pieces into my own stash of precuts – 2 1/2″ squares or strips, 5″ squares, 3″ strips – well your get the idea. I put these into large zip lock bags with the size written on the outside. I line the bags up in empty shoe boxes where they are easily visible. Next time I am making a quilt, I look through these precuts first. I know it will be hard but discard all the tiny little pieces that are unusable.

4.Organize supplies into clear plastic jars that are available at places like Target for about a dollar depending on the size. Put all your scissors, seam rippers, and snips in one – all marking pens and pencils in another -rotary cutters in another.

5. Once your sewing/crafting area is organized it can be a big challenge to keep it that way. Make a habit of putting things back immediately after you use them. It may take a few uses  to develop these practices, but in the long run you will have more time to sew!

#quilting #tipsandtricks #organization