Thursday, February 4, 2016

Thimbleberries Rises Again

I don't know if you've heard, but apparently Lynette Jensen, Queen of RJR's Thimbleberries fabrics and her own pattern company Thimbleberries, has come out of retirement to do a BOM (block of the month). Any quilter who was actively crafting in the 1990s surely has at least one Thimbleberries book and some of her patterns. Most of my quilting friends waited with bated breath on her next book or her next fabric line. We made special trips to Columbus to buy huge quantities of fabrics. All of us traded around our patterns and books.

What made her so appealing to all of us working moms was that her patterns were uncomplicated and her piecing techniques were so very streamlined using relatively large pieces. This made getting a quilt finished loads faster, and for a working woman, this was crucial.

I definitely honed my skills on Thimbleberries. Some of these books are quite worn from use. I have dog-eared many, many pages, and some books permanently fall open to the same pages.

The very first book I bought was this one, Summer House Traditions. I was in a shop in Columbus and several of these little wall hangings were made up and displayed throughout the shop. Samples definitely make sales, as this was the case for me. This book is copyrighted 1993.

This book, North Bay Quilts, is very likely the one I have used the most. That cover quilt is called Confetti Stars, and I have two of them hanging in my closet awaiting quilting. It is also the quilt we Freinzies use for our retirement quilts, so that means at least 8 or so more have been made. This is a fast and fun pattern.

The quilt above is one I want to make, and I have the fabrics pulled from my stash and set aside in a bin along with this book. I should try to pull it out this year and get it done. Below are the fabrics; I have opted to use blue where she has used green.

Another pattern I want to make is this one called Goldenrod Patch. I have always been smitten by it. There are two versions shown in the picture, and I love them both. The picture is hard to see because of the glare shining off all the folds and bends in the book. I have had this pulled along with fabrics for even longer than the one above.

This is the fabric I have selected for Goldenrod Patch. I am more likely to get this one going than the other, I think. Some of these fabrics are from Thimbleberries, but not all. (In other words, I'm not a purist!)

I am not going to participate in the BOM; I have never subscribed to concept, really. They are pricey and I know me - I would never stay caught up. I am however, following some bloggers who are doing it. One in particular is my blogging friend, Lynn, at Sew'n Wild Oaks. She is making one of the blocks - a basket - and has a couple of computer-generated examples on her blog today. You can also see a picture of all the Thimbleberries books she has amassed! Gracious! It makes my little collection look anemic.

So, welcome back, Lynette Jensen! It'll be good to see you popping up around the blogosphere this year.

I will take pictures of some of my quilts that are Thimbleberries patterns. Some have been blogged about already; you can do a search over in that search bar on the right if you want to see them.

Happy Quilting, Friends!


  1. I have many Thimbleberries books, but sadly have only made one small project from them. I need to remedy that. I love the fabrics that you have chosen. So pretty.

  2. Jayne, your quilts are beautiful! I am a fan of Thimbleberries although I've only made a few of her small projects.


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