Somewhere on the interwebs…

Somewhere on the interwebs, I read a gofundme-type page or blog from a quilter who wants to take her evangelical message about quilting labels across country. As I recall, this quilter wanted donations to assist with her self-appointed mission to persuade quilters that their love and labor should be documented for all time through appropriate labeling. If this quilter was thinking about issuing fines for chronic offenders, I would need a gofundme page for bail money and attorney’s fees.

But, before you shake out your pockets and toss the sofa pillows looking for loose change to spring me from the legal system, behold, the first (but not the last) quilt label of 2018 from Gray Barn Designs:


Here is my simple method.

I cut out two pieces of Kona White in the same size and wrote my label on one. I haven’t measured the pieces, I just eyeballed them, but I think they are about 3″x4″.

Then I sewed the two pieces right sides together on three of the four sides. (Truth serum insertion: I really sewed it twice. The first time I sewed 3 3/4 of the sides together, then realized that is was going to be super hard to turn the pieces back to the right side. Immediately I recognized another great chance to work on my un-sewing skills.)


This Bernina walking foot has changed my life.

After I turned the little envelope right side out, I became overcome with the urge to hide a surprise in the label before I close it up. I cannot resist. I must put something in that little secret pocket before it is attached to the DOR quilt.

My first thought was a penny. Do you have a better idea?


And now I’m questioning my writing implement. The fine print on it says that you can use it on fabric, but it might not be washable. What???

How do you label your quilts? Or are we going to be cell mates when the quilt label police find us?

19 thoughts on “Somewhere on the interwebs…

  1. piecefulwendy says:

    I used a Pigma Micron pen (still do) for years before I read the instructions one day and it said to set it with heat before washing. Oh dear. I now set it with heat, but for the labels before that, I’ll have to plead guilty to fading. Hey, it’s all learn-as-you-go over here!

    • sandradny says:

      Thanks for the tip on your go-to pen. I’ll have to find a Pigma Micron. I recently discovered that the blue-line felt tip disappearing “ink” pen that I use to mark on quilts gets brighter when you iron it. Who knew? I know I certainly didn’t read the instructions LOL!

  2. tierneycreates says:

    I have been quite guilty of not labeling quilts. It seems like the only time I label a quilt is when it is going to be in a show or if it is a gift. I did recently start labeling art quilts once they are done. I agree, all quilts should be labeled but nearly all the utility quilts in my house are not labeled.

  3. Meg our-house-quilts says:

    First of all, don’t get me started on GoFundMe appeals so that the general public can underwrite someone else’s vacation trip, with or without evangelical mission! Mostly I label my quilts if I believe they have merit: an original design, one that is sold (definitely), a special gift, or a prize winner. If it is a quilt done at a retreat, class, or a general technique practice, then I do not. Almost none of the quilts on our beds at home have labels.
    Putting a surprise in the label pocket is a neat idea. I’m not sure about the penny. I’m wondering if repeated washings over the quilt’s lifetime will cause the label to be damaged and disintegrate.
    In Australia, there is an on-line quilt register. I believe the point of it is, that any quilts that survive for, say, 100 years can be traced. The workload is spread over the quilt makers instead of having to pay a clerical wage, and the only costs are the initial set-up of the register plus memory charges. In the USA the Quilt Alliance does an even better job of quilt documentation.
    Most of the quilts I make will end up in the goodwill bin after a decade or so, I’m pretty sure. I’m not fussed about having my name on it.
    On the other hand, I applaud your effort. I’m confident it is the right thing to do.

    • sandradny says:

      I’m with you on the GoFundMe “stuff”, not my cup of tea generally. I have been thinking about damage from the penny too. Perhaps another hand-written fabric “surprise” note would do the trick? I’ve got to find the right fabric pen, however. I have never heard of an on-line quilt registry. That’s a great idea. I think they do that for Quilts of Valor, but didn’t know it was possible for other quilts.

  4. Chela's Colchas y Mas says:

    I LOVE the idea of hiding something in the label😍 A lucky penny is a great idea. A coin of the year it was made might be good. I would like to put some type of tiny bird or heart in it. My labels are evolving. I’m embarrassed by my first labels because they were too large. My friend uses an embroidery machine to write my message on the label. I once made a label in the shape of the state of Texas. I sort of like the idea of different shapes.

  5. Paula says:

    I finally started labeling mine a few years ago…some I still don’t…I use my embroidery machine to make mine. I really am trying to label all of them but sometimes I’m just in a hurry…LOL

    • sandradny says:

      Paula: I embroidered a label for one of my first quilts. It was a baseball quilt to honor my son’s championship local Little League team. It was so stressful — I used my old Viking machine, programmed in the label, then had to fuss with the backing so that it ended up in a reasonable place on the finished quilt. There must be an easier way?

  6. Danice G says:

    I label my quilts, too, similar to the way you are describing. Adding the penny is unique. I cannot imagine why someone would need/want money to spread this idea. There are many blog posts about labeling quilts.

  7. Dondi says:

    You are much fancier than I am. I simply take my Sharpie Laundry pen and write on the back of the lower right corner of the quilt very carefully for my labeling. Sometimes I write the beginning and ending of when I sewed the quilt to show how very long it takes me. Months. I like your method because when I slip up, not if, but when, I am going to be crying for months and months!

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