July 10, 2011

The Farmer's Wife...

The Farmer's Wife magazine was published from 1893 to 1939 by Webb Publishing Company of St. Paul, Minnesota. It offered a glimpse into the lives of farm women, including wonderful recipes along with ads for the newest gadgets and appliances available at the time.

If you're fortunate, you might find copies available through Etsy or eBay, but another place for find some of the information that lay within its covers is in some of the reprinted cookbooks you can still purchase. 
This is my copy of The Farmer's Wife cookbook. I really enjoy the recipes, which are wholesome (although not always healthy by today's standards) and simple. An example is an article reprinted from the magazine stating that one should be generous with butter when inviting guests for a meal. 

I happen to subscribe to that philosophy, favoring natural over manufactured any day. I'm the same way about sugar in our home. Sugar in moderation is better for our bodies than the artificial stuff as far as I'm concerned. Enough about food. Let's get to the main subject of my post!
Perhaps you've seen this book online or on other quilting sites. I purchased my copy months ago and have been content to read the letters (from the 1920s) contained within. The blocks in this quilt are really beautiful, and Laurie Hird (the author) has assembled quite a collection of information to accompany the blocks. She has also included instructions and templates to recreate each of the blocks. 

You can also go to Laurie's website to see samples from the cd, samples from her book, and a sneak peek at her upcoming book, The Farmer's Wife Pony Club quilt! (Something else I'll need to add to my list!)

Last week, I read about a Farmer's Wife Quilt Along through Jodi of Pleasant Home blog. You can click on her link for more information - as well as a free download for all the templates to make the quilt blocks. (These do not take the place of the instructions and information available in the book, but it's a place to download all the templates at one time instead of block by block from the cd that comes with the book.) Thanks a million to Jodi's friend, Lori who made the templates available in one place!
I've decided that I'm going to make a Farmer's Wife quilt from the book. I'd rather be spending more time with the puppy right now, so I'm going to start mine this fall. I think that will give me plenty of time to choose my fabrics, too.

Let me know if you're going to tackle this project. It would be fun to start our own little quilt along in the fall if there's enough interest.

18 friends clicked here to leave a note for me:

nancy huggins said...

I am not brave enough or educated enough to try a REAL quilt. I mostly make raggy quilts now that I have discovered the raggy techniques. From Christmas until March I made 18 raggy quilts (1 was for master bedroom) and I have 4 to go. 1 will be a bit of a challenge and will be the Old Rugged Cross for my oldest son and of course I am altering it and making it bigger than the pattern..then 1 for a DIL and 1 for a GD and one for Nellie.. I got a little burned out so am taking a little break. I wanted to get them done since all but 1 goes up North and I was lucky enough to send them back with friend and family which saves a ton of shipping.
I envy anyone that can make the quilts with blocks and they are beautiful but I honestly don't know anyone in my family that would appreciate all that work so...I will stick to the raggy (and a few simple traditional) quilts. I do love seeing what everyone else makes tho :)

Carol at Serendipity said...

I love that quilt. I won't be making it though. I will just admire yours. I will finish my started quilts when I get back and feel a machine embroidery phase coming on!

Hope your summer is going well. Puppy looks awesome!


DeeDee said...

I can tell you I am not...it is to scray for me.... I so wish I knew how to quilt,.... and to make them half as beautiful as yours would put me in heaven.... I cannot wait to see your fabrics..

Michelle May-The Raspberry Rabbits said...

I just saw that book yesterday at a show. That quilt is soooooo pretty! It looks like it will be a lot of fun.
xx, shell

Marguerite (Tina) Smith Hart said...

Oh what a wonderful project and I so wish I was talented enough in the sewing department to jump on board! I have made a few small quilts in my time , but I have to admit even Fons and Porter and dear Georgia Bonesteel get me all confused sometimes..:) although I love to watch!
Maybe this Fall I will get the courage to tackle something this amazing, we'll see!
Have a great day Donna!
Tina xo

Mosaic Magpie said...

I love this quilt! What I like the most is all the different fabrics! I think one of the reasons I have not quilted more is the repetition of it all. I need something that holds my interest and this just may do it. I will look into this further and just may join in!

Rettabug said...

Boy, that's gonna be a challenge! Good luck to you. I have too many UFO's staring me in the face to even think about joining in.

You might want to check your edition of the book. There are some corrections printed on Laurie Hird's site:


She also has a list of other internet groups that have worked on or are working on her book's quilt here:


You might like to see some of the other peoples interpretations of it.


Minimiss said...

DH thought I should buy that book a couple of months ago. Well, what could I say? I wasn't going to argue. I have asked him for his preference in colours so I may just join you in this quilt-along if I can get some of my other projects out of the way first.

Twyla and Lindsey said...

Donna, I love the artwork on the covers of this magazine. I so agree on the sugar! I believe real sugar is far less harmful to our health. Gotta love butter :) Twyla

Patty C. said...

That will be such a beautiful quilt - looking forward to seeing your work ;)

Patty said...

Hi Donna, my sister and I are planning to start this quilt in the near future ( she has a daughter's letter to get through fist ) but it will be fun to compare notes,and pictures. We are making ours scrappy as we have recently inherited both my mother's and aunts stash!

Ale jc said...

Believe or not I have never heard of the Farmers wife... maybe it never came across our border...fancy that... I know plenty of farmers wives in our community of peach, cherry, apple, and wine growers...lol

Melody said...

I'm making this quilt too. I can't wait to see yours grow. I plan to post my first blocks on Friday. Should be lots of fun.

sunny said...

I've had the book for almost a year, but I've been too afraid to start. Maybe this is the right time! A little encouragment from others will be a good thing.

Anonymous said...

I'm going to start one in the fall too. I have the book just have to pick up fabric.

I love the shadesyou've picked out. I have a stash but it isn't varied enough.

My wordpress is not cooperating these days to see daily posts of blogs I follow. So I need to check in daily. Love your little pubs. I lost both my mini schnauzers within five days of each other this year. So difficult without them.

Theodora quilts said...

I was on a shop hop while in the U.S. for a visit and I found the book on sale for $15.00 I was holding it walking around the shop when I came upon a beautiful piece of fabric at the discount rack and I decided to by the fabric thinking I can get info on blog land and here it is I can't wait. theodora

Quilting Nests said...

I have this book and live in New Zealand and was a farmers wife. Would love to do this, so will get onto UFO's so I can start this. Thanks for inspiration

Wren said...

I started this journey with you when the quilt along was started. I just thought you would like to know I have finished mine. I was going to send a picture, but I am unable to figure out how to attach to this comment.


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