Connecting the (Polka) Dots

It’s been so busy here. How about you? I had a cookie decorating party yesterday with Sherry (see her beautiful cookies in my May 3rd post) sharing all of her helpful hints and tips on making “designer” cookies.

A great time was had by all… with lots of icing bags  just waiting to add that magic touch to a stack of naked sugar cookies.

I had a difficult time with the fancy designs, but found that I really enjoyed making dots. They add a nice touch, are fairly easy to make, and are somewhat forgiving of my unskilled hands.

I wonder, are these simply dots, or are they “polka dots?” That piques my curiosity so I do a quick google search to find the following information, provided by David Wilton, Friday, April 13, 2007.

“Where did this name for round circles of dye on clothing originate? And what, if anything, does it have to do with the dance of the same name?

In the 1840s, the polka was sweeping Britain and America. It was the latest dance craze, like the Charleston of the 1920s. In an effort to cash in on the fad, manufacturers began naming all sorts of thing polka. Polka gauzepolka hatspolka curtain bands and many other products with the polka name hit the market in the 1840s. Although, the actual term polka dot is not attested to until 1857. Of these, only the polka dot survives today.

The term polka dot first appears in the magazine Godey’s Lady’s Book of May 1857:

Scarf of muslin, for light summer wear…surrounded by a scalloped edge, embroidered in rows of round polka dots.”

I love dots – especially all kinds of dotted fabrics. Perhaps this stems from my passion for these beautiful ladybugs. My dear friend Nelly sent me this wonderful photo. Isn’t it the best? It reminds me that taking the next (or first) step is all relative.

Photo by Nelly Schrager - http://www.photoquilter@deviantart.com

Who knows where these preferences come from? Perhaps spending eight years of my youth in plaid skirts has caused me to avoid working with any print resembling blue/grey plaid ;-).

On another subject, remember this beautiful jelly roll? I love these hot summer colors. It was hard to decide just what to make with them. C&T Publishing asked me to demonstrate easy steps for constructing quilt blocks with “points.” The Sawtooth Star is one of my favorites.

These are the blocks I have made so far. I will be spending the next few days sewing them together in an interesting arrangement.

Blocks for online demo.

Now … I’m ready for some tea and cookies and then I’m back in the sewing room.

Enjoy another week of creative sewing.

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17 Responses to Connecting the (Polka) Dots

  1. Sarah Tymo says:

    I was just on Kerstie’s blog, which led me to yours…. Laura, I love your thought process. The word ‘polka’ just SOUNDS whimsical to me- full of fun and happy possibilities! And your cookies, look delish! I will pop in from time to time to see what you’ll post next! Thank you for making me smile.

    • Laura Nownes says:

      Thanks for the sweet words Sarah. So glad you stopped by. I’ll let you know the next time we have a cookie party. It’s so much fun.

  2. Michelle says:

    Oh my. I knew who the author of this post was WAY before the end. My dear friend Laura!! Baking, lady bugs and plaid skirts!

    • Laura Nownes says:

      Michelle – Only you would get this one! We will forever be indebted to CHS for those stylish plaid skirts. Glad you know me so well. I love having dear friends that understand me and love me in spite of it all.
      love you much.

  3. Kerry says:

    I love polka dots too! Nelly’s photo is incredible!

  4. kerstie says:

    Thanks again to you and Sherry! Can’t wait for another class.
    Kerstie

  5. Angie Nudge says:

    I saw your wednesday demo on the sawtooth star at the C&T Blog and just fell in love with the quilt top you made from the Terrain. Are you going to do a project sheet or pattern for that? Would love to make it.

  6. Sherry says:

    What a wonderful post! I love the ladybug photo from Nelly. She is so talented. I really like your comment about it, “It reminds me that taking the next (or first) step is all relative.” So true. Your cookie photos are beautiful, by the way. I love the one with the icing bags. xoxo

    • Laura Nownes says:

      Thanks so much Sherry. It was such fun spending the afternoon decorating cookies with you. We all had a great time.

  7. Wish I lived closer to you!!! Enjoy. XX, Dolores

    • Laura Nownes says:

      I wish you did too, Dolores!
      I always enjoy seeing you at shows and Asilomar. Hope all is well and happy.

  8. lisa says:

    Great show tonight – thanks again! Love your Terrain quilt so much!!

    • Laura Nownes says:

      Thanks so much Lisa. I had a great time tonight. Super audience. Please send me the e-mail address for “my winner”.

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