Clothing made using printed cotton feed sacks. Image courtesy of the Museum Of Texas Tech University.

Cotton and Thrift: Feed Sacks and the Fabric of American Households
June 25-December 15, 2019
The Museum of Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas


A new exhibit has opened up at the Museum of Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas featuring a wide sampling of the almost 6,000 objects from the Museum’s printed cotton research collection. Cotton and Thrift: Feed Sacks and the Fabric of American Households,” a companion exhibit catalog of the same name is also available through the Museum Store, Amazon and TTU Press. In case you can't make the exhibit, Curator and author, Dr. Marian Ann Montgomery, will share fascinating tidbits from the exhibit and book during the Monday, October 28th luncheon at this year’s International Quilt Festival in Houston. 

The exhibit, which opens with the earliest white cotton sacks, includes examples of how resourceful women transformed this simplest of materials into embroidered towels, children’s clothing and undergarments. During WW I white cotton sacks filled with flour were part of the American relief efforts for the people of German occupied Belgium. As a thank you for Americans, the women of Belgium decorated these sacks with embroidery. A rare example of this work is on display and not to be missed.

Examples of printed cotton shacks. Image courtesy of the Museum Of Texas Tech University.

The 1920s saw the experimentation of one cotton sack company to offer of a pink gingham bag, of which an example is on exhibit, but this idea never expanded to anything further. Pretty pastel colored cotton sacks, called Tint-Sax, came onto the market in the early 1930s as a way to encourage their reuse as embroidered towels, aprons or children’s garments.

By 1937 companies began offering beautiful fabric prints on cotton sacks as an encouragement for women to buy their brand of flour, sugar, chicken feed, etc. vs. in cotton sacks instead of paper. This was particularly important in Texas where a cotton surplus existed. The Dallas Morning News, among other publications, encouraged women to demand products in cotton sacks as a way of giving back to their fellow Texans in the cotton industry work.  Imagine—free quilting fabric that was beautiful and served as a method of giving people jobs!

The imaginative fabric designers—many of which were in New York City, ran free and large numbers of beautiful fabrics were created. Some sacks were printed with borders that worked as pillow cases or café curtains, others were just for children and still others featured aspects of the ideal life in the north or the south. Some manufacturers printed their sacks with toy or doll patterns that could be cut from the fabric and stuffed for children. 

Examples of printed cotton feed sack quilts. Image courtesy of the Museum Of Texas Tech University.

Much of this ‘free fabric’ was turned into quilts, with feed sack fabric being used for both the blocks on the front as well as the backing of the quilt.  Other uses of creative feed sack use in the exhibition include garments and aprons.

The carefully selected 1930s apple green gallery walls coordinate beautifully with the colors of the quilts and other items on display. The Museum’s collection includes over 3,000 examples of the various prints used for the sacks and as many as possible are part of this special exhibit.

Image courtesy of the Museum Of Texas Tech University.

The bulk of the Museum’s collection of printed cotton sacks came from the California collector, Pat L. Nickols. Also included in this exhibit are pieces from other members of the American Quilt Study Group, Quilters Guild of Dallas and the South Plains Quilt Guild of Lubbock.

The exhibit catalog was generously underwritten by funding from Moda/United Notions and the CH Foundation. 


 Learn more about the Clothing and Textiles Collection at the Museum of Texas Tech University.



Vibrant colors and inspirational words from Ghandi are all part of this whimsical quilt, Be The Change, by Joanne Sharpe.

Watch Joanne in Show 1610: Words of Art, which is free to everyone through July 21, 2019.

Click here to visit Joanne's website.


If you were lucky enough to view the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show and decided to stay an extra day, you were in for a treat! The Sisters Outdoors Quilt Show Sunday is an up close introduction to one Quilter's Affair Instructor and their quilts. Held at the beautiful 5 Pines Lodge, it is a beautiful setting for a more intimate quilt show.

The guest speaker shares their process and history, which not only includes a lecture and slide show but also a walking tour with the artist through the grounds of 5 Pines. The quilts are hung between the trees with the beautiful wild flowers beneath and the sunlight dancing across them.

Carolyn Friedlander was the quilt artist for the 2019 Quilt Show Sunday and we will have a full video of this wonderful artist on the Quilt Roadies YouTube Channel. After viewing the videos of this years show, you are going to want to start planning for your trip to visit us in 2020!

Stay tuned and travel along with us on Quilt Roadies.

Click here for Anna's blog.

Did you know there is a Crayola store? Yep, we found the latest one in Chandler, AZ, and you can create your own custom assortment of crayons and markers at the Pick Your Pack wall. Want a whole tin of Tickle Me Pink? Or an ocean-inspired collection of blues and greens?
We also like how they show the year the color was introduced to the pack.


Karen Grover wanted to use denim, vintage shirting, and appliqué on indigo fabric. She discovered she might have a bit of an issue with the different weights of each fabric and came up with an elegant solution. She also created the very elegant Buttermilk and Blue Skies.

Karen's quilt was on display at the Houston International Quilt Festival 2018.




From Bohin:




Originally from Normandie, France, designer Eymeric François was trained by Thierry Mügler in his Paris fashion house. Independent since the early 2000s, Eymeric François does several haute couture fashion shows in Paris and around the world every year including Eastern Europe, Japan, and Thailand. For many years, Eymeric has been accompanied by BOHIN France to create fabulous creations made of hundreds of thousands pins in brass, steel - nickeled or not. Pins become embroidery, jewelry, lace, etc. The pin is magnified on the woman’s body who then becomes dangerous, not to say fatal… These beauties that one must approach with sensitivity will amaze you but watch out – you might get burned!

This exhibition retraces Eymeric’s creative path from the sketch to the fashion show. Our visit begins in the workshop, at the drawing board, then to the pattern work, fabric assembly and fittings. Then, we move on to the show, décor/ music/ choreography choice and, of course, the order of appearance of the dresses! Few people have the chance to attend a Haute Couture fashion show in their life, and that’s exactly the experience we want to invite you to share with us.


Squaring up her quilts has always been a challenge for Alex. Quilts have a habit of moving as you make big cuts. But these cuts need to be accurate. Using Quilters Select rulers, Alex shows you how to square up your quilt.


It took more than just a little bit of work and a number of people to put together Klimt Nouveau by the Wild FEW.
We counted 17 techniques alone and we didn't even mention the zippers...
Klimt Nouveau was on display in the Group Quilts category at AQS QuiltWeek Paducah Spring 2019.
62" x 75"
Quilting Method: Hand, Stationary Machine, Movable Machine.
Quilting Techniques: Fused Appliqué, Hand Appliqué, Machine Appliqué, Beading, Collage, Couching, Decorative Stitching, Hand Dyeing, Embellishments, Free-Motion Embroidery, Hand Embroidery, Machine Embroidery, Silk Ribbon Embroidery, Free-Motion Quilting, Freestyle Piecing, Hand Piecing, Machine Piecing.
Quilted by Alanna Levesque.


The Prime Price is currently showing as $24.99 vs $49.99 regular price

Yes, but it is different. Chromecast and AppleTV need another device to "cast" or send the picture to the TV. In good WiFi they work very well. In poor WiFi there is a lag that can happen. Chromecast works well with PCs and Android phones, and AppleTV works well with iPhones, Macs, and iPads. With Chromecast and AppleTV you actually find our show on the device and then select a little icon that then connects you with your big TV screen.

The Amazon Fire Stick (and newer Smart TVs) have a browser built in. So, you can find TQS on the internet without having any other devices necessary. Then if you bookmark our login page and have the login pre-entered (saved), you can get to our show very quickly.

Of course, as with anything that is in the Apple Ecosphere, it is about 3x as expensive as the alternatives. (I own all 3 and I am an Apple user.)

Chromecast $39, Chromecast Ultra $69, AppleTV HD 32g $149, AppleTV 4K 64g $199, FireStick 4k $49 (Probably on Prime Day $39 - just a guess).



Capt'n John: I am writing this on Sunday so I don't know what the price of the Fire Stick 4k (my recommended model) will be. Alex and I have found that watching TQS on the big TV more fun. (It is a TV show!). It works great in her studio so she can play it while she works. Watch the video to get my hints on setup that will make returning and watching again very easy. So, if it's a great price, this would be a good time to try it out. (By the way, it is also a great way to see the quilts we put in the blog.)

Disclaimer: TQS is not associated with Amazon and gets no commission on any sales. We just like how it allows you to see the shows.

Top 10 Reasons to Join the Quilt Show!

(Click on the box next to the YouTube logo to enlarge the screen.)

Learn about Apliquick appliqué tools!
Watch Show 1912
with Rosa Rojas (free!)

Apliquick Rods

Apliquick - 3 Holes Microserrated Scissors

 Apliquick Ergonomic Tweezers