Friday, February 15, 2013


This is a Sunbonnet Sue quilt top made by my mother-in-law. It will make it to my long arm quilter soon I hope. Love the fabrics. She did some raw edge applique and just zig-zag stitched the edges all around the little Sues. She didn't even know the term "mixed media" I am sure but that is what she used when she used her tube paints for the Sue's shoes and bouquets each carries. Very simple and very cute. Am keeping her method in mind for future projects. No, the quilt will never win a quilt competition but it will be handed down in our family and I hope is treasured as it should be. I will put a label on the back so the history won't be lost for posterity. Please remember to label your work so there won't be any mystery for future generations about who and when it was made. Willena passed 11 years ago and I don't know when she made this quilt-at least 25 years ago.

 The Sunbonnet Sue with its twenty blocks will be a twin size quilt when done. Willena's purple floral borders and sashing need nothing else except to be bound after quilting. 

 I love Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Sam quilts but if I set out to make one, I might, just might get 3 or 4 blocks done and they would be laid aside. Over 20 years ago I designed the oversized Sunbonnet Sue and recently added Overall Sam. They are quick and easy and I only have to make one large block instead of 12 or 16 smaller blocks to create the same size baby quilt. 

The patterns are for a 56" by 56" quilt and are available in My Pattern Store @ There is a pattern for the traditional 14" block included with my enlarged pattern to match the over sized patterns. If I had the patience, I would make several of the smaller blocks and add them around the larger block but that is not going to happen-not in my sewing room but the smaller sized block pattern is included for someone who might want to do that so everything matches. 

Check out my step by step Sunbonnet Sue/Overall Sam video demonstrating the quick applique method using lightweight fusible interfacing

 I saw Eleanor Burns [Quilt In A Day] making her appliques several years ago this way and have used the interfacing ever since. Of course, she was making traditional sized blocks. I love it-bless you, Eleanor Burns. 

I completed both 56" by 56" Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Sam in one afternoon. It would have taken almost the same amount of time to make the traditional 14" blocks-this is why I call them my short attention span quilt patterns. 

In a former post [], I shared my grandmother's butterfly quilt with its hand stitched appliques:

I did follow her tradition on my Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Sam but machine stitched instead:

Sam's wagon is really quick and easy to construct as all the other elements of the quilts.  

One tip to pass on: Since my teflon pressing sheet is no longer usable [there's not a law against teflon sheet abuse, is there?], I used wax coated freezer wrap to protect my pressing surface while pressing the applique parts together. It worked just fine. 

  If your attention span is as short as mine you might want to try my short attention span patterns.

God bless you and happy quilting
Carolyn Wainscott

here is the link to my Sunbonnet Sue Pattern

and for Overall Sam

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