Kathy French

Collage will supersize if double-clicked


Original free pieced design by Katherine French
Belfast, Maine 

(Sadly, Kathy is now deceased)

Free motion quilting by Chris Ballard

29.25" wide x 25" long - Shown here before quilting
Photo will supersize if double-clicked

Katherine writes:  

The mud season in Maine can be challenging, 
but it is so worth celebrating because it is 
a sure sign that Winter has lost its icy grip.  

The tree buds will soon burst forth, 
neighbors emerge from in-house hibernation, and
windows and doors are opened to let warmer breezes in.  

As e.e. cummings 
so skillfully described in his poem in Just,
"the world is ‘mud-lucious’ and ‘puddle-wonderful."

What a perfect description!

In coastal Belfast, Maine, 
most of the older houses have 
attached barns known as city barns.  
Their original function was to 
shelter horses and carriages and provide storage.  

Today, most of these barns 
have been converted to 
garages or additional living space.

The barn depicted in my quilt 
is the one attached to my house 
and is one of the few that remains a barn.  

(Among the items we found there when we moved in 
were several horseshoes, a hoof pick, an auger, 
and a small, corked bottle of (?) left in the rafters.)  

The barn’s lower level now houses 
a very rustic workshop 
and the haymow is still used for storage.  

The house attachment shown includes a mudroom 
(through the red door) 
with entries to both the back porch and the barn, 
and a pantry and large kitchen 
(through the black door).  

The upper level is now a studio.

The house and barn were built by 
a carpenter named Simeon Staples.  

Mr. Staples lost his home in 1865 
to a fire which engulfed the entire business area of Belfast 
as well as the homes of workmen who lived near the shore.  

Mr. Staples’ new home (our house) 
was built a little ways up the hill from his original home.

Shown here after quilting - Photo will supersize if double-clicked


Katherine used alternating narrow strips of 
two different fabrics to create her barn’s siding – 
creating both texture and realistic shadows.  

A fussy cut cat sits in her quilting studio’s open window. 


Special things to notice include the shingle patterns 
stitched into the roofs of the attached house and porch, 
curving rows of stitching that unify the scrappy-pieced ground, 
and stitch in the ditch (SID) work that enhances 
the look of the barn’s siding as well as 
the walls, windows, and porch of the house.  

The graceful thread play tree even features 
not-quite-ready-to-open almost-spring buds.





1 comment:

  1. Kathy is a barn making goddess. I adore her work and think this is twenty kinds of fabulous. The tiny details are outstanding. I always learn so much from her.



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