2016 Mystery Fig Tree Sampler

As I write this, I should be finishing up the binding on this lovely 2016 project. My Instagram friends urged me to finish up the binding so that I could consider it a February finish and that is just the cheering section I need right about now to get this one done!

UPDATE: BINDING DONE [see last photo] !!

Sometimes I absolutely love binding and sometimes... well sometimes not so much [usually depending on what else I have to do at the same time]!

These annual samplers have surely become my favorite projects of all time. The one from 2015 was based a little bit more around a sherbet palette with navy as the darkest element [I will share some comparison photos in a few days]. This sampler from 2016 went a bit more retro and was based around my Farmhouse and Strawberry Fields collections and used a chalkboard black as the "grounding color" of the grouping. That might be one of my favorite elements this time around.

I chose the black gingham rose as the binding and I am just a little smitten with how it all turned out. Enjoy....













When we get a bit of warm weather and dry grass enough for a full photo shoot, I will include some more photos of the entire project!

If you joined us for this year long project, I really hope you are nearing completion on yours too. Would love to see your finished pics on Instagram!!


Fig Tree Mystery Sampler II

UPDATE: The program is sold out as of now. We are so very sorry that it went so fast. We are trying to see if we can add any more spots but it all depends on fabric availability and how many more bolts we can find. If you are interested in a spot, please email us and we will add you to the wait list. Please understand that we are just not set up as as a standard quilt store and don't have the capability to cut, prepare and ship an unlimited amount of kits. We started these programs as a way of reaching customers that don't have a good local quilt store near them and their popularity has grown so tremendously each time that there is simply no way for us to keep up! We have already doubled and then tripled our initial BOM spots and we just can't keep up with the demand. Please don't be upset and know and understand that we are doing all we can to add more spots but we can only do so many.

I know that our new Retro Farmhouse Wool Sampler came and went so quickly on social media that I didn't even get a chance to post about it here so this time around I figured I would post here first!


Join us for our second annual Fig Tree Mystery Sampler II. A perfect project to work along on for 2016, this sampler will be just that… a wonderful sampler filled with more of our favorite blocks in sizes from 6" to 18". The sampler will have our signature "Fig Tree" feel and so even though it is a mystery… you know that you will love it!


This time around we will incorporate a few of our more "modern" or fresh blocks including some letters of the alphabet and our very popular Daisy block.


The blocks will still have our classic vintage feel, as many of them will indeed by vintage blocks… those are always our favorites!

Each month you will receive instructions for several blocks and many of the months will also include stand alone Fig Tree patterns to add to your collection. Its a fabulous deal all the way around!


The project will start in January and continue through to December. The fabrics will be mostly the ones shown from our newest collections, Farmhouse and Strawberry Fields, with a few additions. There will easily be over 17 yards of fabric!

There is just nothing better than working on a project piece by piece each month and having an amazing heirloom project to show for it when the year comes to a close. The first Mystery Sampler is potentially my favorite quilt that we have ever made and so of course we had to do it again! I sure hope you will join us. Click HERE for more info or to sign up.

Looking forward to a fabulous 2016!!


I know that this one was a really long time in coming!

First it took us a while to get the finished blocks put together into 2 lap size quilts [that was what we decided to do instead of the one really large quilt that was a little bit too much for us]. We decided to redo a few of the pink blocks once I decided that the quilts were going to be for my boys. One can "hang with" a bit of pink. The other one… not so much :-)!

Then it took a while to get it on Diana's long list of quilts to quilt. Then it took a while to decide what to quilt on it. Baptist Fan seemed like the perfect choice as soon as we thought of it!

Then it took quite a while for me to get it to the top of the list of TO DO'S and bind them both. The week I got back from THE EPIC ADVENTURE when I was waking up at 3:00 am with jet lag… that seemed like a perfect time to finally get binding!

But now they are both done, quilted and bound. The back is yummy SNUGGLE and each one is for one of my boys. The oldest will take tone with him to college next year and the next one, well we still have a few more years for him to wear it in!

Quilt #1











Quilt #2









So happy with these!! Hope you are all done with yours or at least I hope it is on the top of your TO DO list. It really is a wonderful grouping of blocks… even if some of them are a bit large!


Over the last couple of weeks,  I have received a few emails from customers with questions about what samplers were, how they worked and were the idea came from. I knew a little bit about the topic but as a result of these questions, I did a bit more research and thought I would share them with you...



VintageFarmhouseBOM...the vintage sampler our VINTAGE FARMHOUSE was based around.

It seems that prior to the mid 1800's, most quilts were traditionally created as medallion style quilts, both here in the US and back in England. The center medallion was the focal element of the quilt and the remainder of the quilt was created around the medallion with various borders both plain and intricate.





In the early 1800's, American quilters slowly began experimenting with the currently more utilized, grid pattern- both sampler and one single repeated block, where each block is the same size and is set in some sort of a grid with or without sashing. Reasons were most likely numerous but it seems that these kinds of quilts lent themselves more to being done in groups and in community, by those just starting out and could be made more frugally with scraps and small fabric pieces. Samplers began to be very popular at this time- in various formats but primarily with one size block, each one different.

Samplers... a few of my favorite vintage samplers.

These kinds of projects were often done as block exchanges or family compilations or as "bees". As a result they were usually quite scrappy and blocks were original and varied. Mothers also used this method often to teach young girls how to quilt and, very similiarly to the popular cross stitch samplers, quilt samplers were often the very first quilt a young quilter might make.  


 ... this is kind of what I have always imagined a bee would look like. Sometimes I wonder if I should have been born in another era.


Watermark-faith-ringgold-sunflower-quilting-bee-at-arles1... I found this image and couldn't resist sharing. Love everything about it!


When I was learning how to quilt and in my early years working in our local quilt shop, I had absolutely no desire to make a sampler quilt. Nothing about it looked good to me. I wanted to work on the blocks quickly, wanted to strip piece them, wanted to be efficient with my time. Mostly I wanted to get to the end stage of the quilt as fast as possible so I could see the outcome of my work and move on to the next quilt in my head! 

Many quilters around me made samplers as a way of learning many techniques in one project but since I was self taught [from a book], I was not convinced. It has really only been in the last couple of years that vintage samplers have really caught my attention and the beauty of them has really stood out to me above many other quilts that I have seen. Perhaps its me that is changing but there is something so beautiful and awe inspiing about them. All of a sudden the idea of working on one block at a time, perhaps in a pre-determined timeframe like a block of the month, has become quite a draw.

For me personally, the ones that had a somewhat focused or more limited color palette were the ones that I fell in love with the most...

We decided to try it out and started our first sampler quilt as a Fig Tree program with our VINTAGE FARMHOUSE quilt. Based completely on a vintage sampler that we fell in love with [shown above], we loved both the blocks, the quirky feel and the color palette. [This was an 8-month program that we did last year and that ended in the fall of 2014].]


Vintagebombaskets... NOTE: We are almost done binding this beauty and will show MANY quilt photos of it by the end of this week so check back soon!

We continued on when we jumped on Moda's MODERN BUILDING BLOCKS bandwagon but made it a bit more "figgified" with a mix of mostly solids and some Fig Tree fabrics from our current Somerset collection. MODERN BUILDING BLOCKS FIG TREE STYLE was born.


We loved the very modern feel of this quilt with some gigantic blocks and some little ones, mostly solids and a very graphic feel. This quilt was completely different than anything we had ever liked before and it has been so much fun to do along with many of you. I can't wait until we are done next month and I can see the whole thing put together in its entirety!  [This was a 7 month program which ends next month- this month's shipment will be processed by the end of the week.]


Currently we are working on the FIG TREE MYSTERY SAMPLER with many of you participating and we are adding in many of our long time favorite blocks [such as pineapple, rolling stone, nosegay, churn dash, weathervane, clamshell to name a few...], working with classic Fig Tree patterns and adding in a few things to challenge all of us just a bit!




The quilt is a mystery... even to us... as we are working just a month ahead the rest of you [don't worry we do have a general plan just not the specifics]! We can't wait to see how this quilt evolves and are absolutely in love with how its turning out so far... maybe that has something to do witht the fact that we choose all of our favorite Fig Tree colors, fabrics and blocks! [For this program, we are working on finishing up month #3 as we speak and those will go out next week for those of you who are in the program.]

As you have seen we have kind of fallen in love with samplers and you shouldn't be surprised if you see a new one coming up in the next month or so.... 

Happy January everyone!