Gina's friend, Maria, traveled from Vermont for a 6 day visit last week.
We were sure she would enjoy a trip to the Casey County Mennonite shops.
I picked up the 'girls' at 10 o'clock last Thursday morning for a leisurely tour.
Our first stop was at Misty Mountain, the general store which offers a wonderous stock of kitchen goods, canning supplies, pots and pans in sizes to cook for large families, yard goods, and a sampling of Amish-made furniture and quilts.
The store also has on hand calico dresses, aprons and bonnets favored by 'plain people.
Maria and Gina modeled bonnets.
This quilt featured for sale was new to the store since my last visit.
The hand applique and small quilting stitches are exquisite.
The quilts are displayed beneath a sheet of clear protective plastic--which causes a glare in the photo.
Many years ago in Vermont I helped Maria to construct her first quilt.
A meticulous person in all that she does, Maria has gone on to make lovely quilts.
Her knitted garments are also beautifully professional.
She was pleased to find quilt backing fabric here at a better price than 'home' so bought several yards to pack into her suitcase.
This 'primitive' quilt was on display at the nearby furniture store which is presided over by a man who is easily 7 feet tall!
This shop had been greatly expanded since our last visit two years ago.
The quilt was on a rack behind a table, so a bit awkward to get a proper photo.
Applique detail of the crow in the corner block. This would be a very simple quilt to duplicate.
Although I couldn't reach to turn over the edge, I suspect this is an imported quilt, not locally made.
This is another homespun quilt, also, I believe, an import.
I like the colors and styles of these quilts, but I disagree with the sense that 'primitive' means clumsy seams and wrinkled piecing.
As we made our way around the furniture showroom, G. discovered this over-sized version of a child's 'highchair.' The shop owner informed us that it was made as a 'sample' such as might have been set outside a shop years ago to advertise the wares within.
G. [of course] had to clamber into the chair for a photo session and was very amused when the shop owner produced the calf nursing bottle as a prop, We guessed that many people take advantage of the chair for a memorable photo.
The Amish rocking chairs are blissfully comfortable.
Maria is enjoying one which has a matching footstool which also rocks.
Much as I love my Grampa Mac's old rocking chair, if I had room in this little house for another, I would have come home with one of these.
G. is dispalying a braided rug in soft colors.
This is a beautifully made replica of a Hoosier kitchen cabinet.
I have one, an original, which came from the Vermont farmhouse shared by my grandparents and great-grandparents. This one has a laminated butcher block top while mine has an enameled sliding top.
Where the sugar and flour bins are shiny aluminum in the new version, mine are a white-painted metal.
The sign on this quilt stated that it was locally made. The 'patches' are of denim salvaged from jeans. At the 4 corners of each block are calico 'yo-yo's' which tie down the quilt.
Critical quilt maker that I am, I felt that the yo-yo's needed to be more firmly attached to survive wear and laundering. The backing was a rather thin muslin with no batting. I would have added a low-loft batting.
This lodge pole pine table and chairs are of the style often seen in log houses such as
J. built in Wyoming.
Nearly all the furniture in the shop, whether of the primitive genre or more refined was built in a scale that would dwarf the rooms of our small cottage.
Many of the decorative accessories in the shop were rather predictable: stenciled signs, fat candles in rustic wrought-iron holders, small woven or braided rag mats.
This owl caught my eye. He is made of a coarse linen and his 'apron' is attached with faux-rusty pins.
We concluded our tour with a stop at the whole foods market.
I bought a 50# sack of unbleached flour, dried beans, rice, pasta in bulk packages, a gallon jug of molasses, various other goodies, and the ultimate indulgence: a small container of pumpkin fudge.
I realized suddenly, that I was more than ready to head for home.
We had enjoyed our 'time out' but a week of cleaning or sewing until after midnight had caught
up with me.
After delivering the girls to Gina's house, it was good to return home, greet the cats, build up the fire and sit still with a mug of green tea!