On this blog you can find my ramblings about the baby Dear Jane's® (all 225 patterns).

I will regularly post a picture about the ‘babies’ that have been constructed. Each block is unique and belong to its maker, Jane A. Stickle, they are all derived from the original ‘mother’ quilt:

‘In War Times 1863 Pieces 5602 Jane A. Stickle’.

Dear Jane® Progress

Dear Jane Status

  A-1 A-2 A-3 A-4 A-5 A-6 A-7 A-8 A-9 A-10 A-11 A-12 A-13  
  B-1 B-2 B-3 B-4 B-5 B-6 B-7 B-8 B-9 B-10 B-11 B-12 B-13  
  C-1 C-2 C-3 C-4 C-5 C-6 C-7 C-8 C-9 C-10 C-11 C-12 C-13  
  D-1 C-2 D-3 D-4 D-5 D-6 D-8 D-9 D-10 D-11 D-12 D-13  
  E-1 E-2 E-3 E-4 E-5 E-9 E-10 E-11 E-12 E-13  
  F-1 F-2 F-3 F-4 F-10 F-11 F-12 F-13  
  G-1 G-2 G-3 G-4 G-11 G-12 G-13  
  H-1 H-2 H-3 H-4 H-5 H-9 H-10 H-11 H-12 H-13  
  I-1 I-2 I-3 I-4 I-5 I-6 I-8 I-9 I-10 I-11 I-12 I-13  
  J-1 J-2 J-3 J-4 J-5 J-6 J-7 J-8 J-9 J-10 J-11 J-12 J-13  
  K-1 K-2 K-3 K-4 K-5 K-6 K-7 K-8 K-9 K-10 K-11 K-12 K-13  
  L-1 L-2 L-3 L-4 L-5 L-6 L-7 L-8 L-9 L-10 L-11 L-12 L-13  
  M-1 M-2 M-3 M-4 M-5 M-6 M-7 M-8 M-9 M-10 M-11 M-12 M-13  

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Update on F8, H6 and H8

Dear Jane,

As mentioned in my previous letter, I planned to do some preparations for a couple of baby Jane blocks.


I intended to prepare 4 blocks, but I only managed 3 today. It is slow and tedious process. The templates are so small. I now understand that not all your baby blocks were 4.5 x 4.5 inch. I’m however sticking to Brenda’s plan, so I better get used to those tiny templates. For I have another 223 blocks to go. Actually a little less than 223 as I now have gotten the F8 – Church Window done, as the H6 – Pie Sale and H8 – Eaton’s Crossroads.




Yes, I use cotton nappies to pin the templates on. This way they won’t stray. I’m able to fit 3 baby blocks on one nappy. I think it is appropriate to use nappies when constructing baby Jane blocks. Another reason is that I can fold the nappy so that it fits nicely between Brenda’s book and the Clover double sided patchwork board. This makes it easier to take it with me. I’ll also be taking some thread, needles, pins and scissors with me. Naturally also my finger pincushion. All this fits nicely in this little box. I hope I didn’t forget anything essential.  


While in the UK I’m hoping to construct some blocks, as I’m expecting lots of rain. I hope to have completed G6 – Pappa’s star, G8 – Justin’s Comet, H7 – Bennington Star,  F8 – Church Window, H6 – Pie Sale and H8 – Eaton’s Crossroads, the next time I write. 

Best regards, Helen

F6, F8, H6 and H8

Dear Jane,

I’ve decided to take some work with me on my holidays. The weatherman is predicting rain and more rain. I can already imagine myself sitting in a nice tearoom and do some patchwork & appliqué. I think hubby will think I’ve gone completely mad. So I might do some patchwork in our room at the B&B instead, if we decide not to go out exploring in the rain. Wondering, were there bed & breakfast places in your time? I think you most probably spoke of inns. Sadly, I can’t find much information about inns during the civil war, except that some functioned as a hospital.

Anyway, I’ve printed the F6 – Deanie’s Daisies, such a pretty block, F8 – Church Window, H6 – Pie Sale (love this one), and H8 – Eaton’s Crossroads. There will definitely be some challenges along the way. Do click on the hyperlinks as the tutorials make everything a little easier. I really appreciate the effort that Anina made to place all those tutorials on this blog. Some of those blocks are real mind teasers. I had forgotten that I put this tutorial on my blog for easy reference, as I knew that some of the blocks would be a challenge when I decided to undertake this project. I have to thank Juud for reminding me. I sometimes think I’m losing my mind (especially my memory)…… as, “I put my heart and my soul into my work, and have lost my mind in the process.” - Vincent van Gogh. Undertaking this challenge, making a replica of your quilt, reminds me that “Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most”. - Mark Twain. I really need to do something about that. So instead of improving my concentration by playing memory games or doing concentration puzzles, I’ve convinced myself that making this quilt will do the trick too.

I’ve chosen the fabric, out of my rather large civil war fabric stash. A lady can never have enough fabric!! But I do think I need to invest in some more civil war fabric! I think this will satisfy my graving for a while.

A little later in the morning you can imagine me sitting behind the table drawing on the fabric and cutting out the templates, preparing myself to undertake another 4 blocks. By the way, today is a rainy day here in the Netherlands, so what better way is there than to spend my day with your quilt.

kind regards, Helen

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

G6 – papa’s star

Dear Jane,

I just wanted to let you know I’ve found a friend who wants to take on the challenge of making a replica of your quilt. Lucky for me, we will encounter the same challenges together, as we are both in the start-up phase. I thought that the G7 was a challenge but I definitely can now say that this baby Jane was easy compared to G6 – papa’s star.

I’ve undone my work twice now!IMG_4554Somehow ‘template - i’ didn’t fit right. I think the template wasn’t mirrored as the other templates. Did I find a mistake in the ‘Dear Jane Quilt Design Software’ or was it a mistake I make myself? Luckily, Juud was there to help me tackle the problem. I think together we solved the problem.  IMG_4555The turnaround for this baby Jane is about 5 hours now and I’ve only done the centre part of this block. When will I finish this teeny weensy baby Jane? But don’t start thinking that I’ve become discouraged. I will preserver. I absolutely love this quilt and I can already imagine how it will look like many years from now.

Juud was in the States a little while ago and it is nice to see that she found some similar fabrics. She has bought stacks of fat-quarters. There were so many fat-quarters on the table last night. She even bought some doubles by mistake. I understand the price of a fat-quarter in the States can not be compared to the prizes over here. It seems to be so much cheaper there. I won’t mention how much I’ve already spend on this quiltEmbarrassed


I was the lucky girl to get her doubles. Aren’t these green fat-quarters beautiful?


At the end of our evening, Juud and I planned some more get-togethers to work on this beautiful quilt.  In the above picture two of my finished baby Jane’s are displayed!

Regards, Helen

Sunday, June 5, 2011

5th of June

Dear Jane,

It has been some time since I’ve posted. The last couple of months have been challenging to say the least. I don’t know how you did it, finding time to work on this quilt during a very worrying time. Knowing that family and friends were away fighting a war. Fighting for your independence and freedom. You and the other women tending to your farms and going about your life.

There were lots of tensions that led to the Civil War, that lasted from 1861 to 1865. I believe the five primary causes that led to the ‘war between the states’ were: the social and economic differences between the north and south; states versus federal rights (two camps emerged those arguing for greater states rights and those arguing for more control by the federal government); the fight between slave and non-slave state proponents; the growth of the Abolition movement and the election of Abraham Lincoln. I wonder on whose side you were on and what your views were on this war.

I’m realizing that when faced with life changing challenges, this affects my creativity and sewing time. I just don’t seem to be able to pick-up needle and thread and sew those beautiful baby Jane blocks.

You don’t want to know how many times in the past months I planned some free time to finish G6 – papa’s star. I would love some advise on how to create some ‘sewing’ time.

Hoping to pick-up my pace in the next month. But don’t hold your breath as I’ll be focussing most of my attention on getting other things in order first. 

I’m amazed the progress that other Dear Jane fanatics are making. Some do one to two blocks a week. I only can dream!

I’ve not given up on making this beautiful quilt. I will preserver and carry on.

regards, Helen (an admirer of your quilt)