Acorn Cottage - Morning Star

(Warning… lots of words… but the story is pretty precious to me.)Morning Star - cover photo

So this quilt, Morning Star,  is the quilt that Martingale chose as the quilt that would be on the cover of my book, ‘Acorn Cottage’.

Morning Star has been a quilt design that I had in my mind for quite a long time. I have always loved the ‘Star of Bethlehem’ quilts I had seen - even before I started quilting, & I had always wanted to make one. I then got it in my head that I wanted mine to have a gingham effect. (I've always had a thing for gingham!!)

So… that was the start.

Then I had a friend who was in a class at a local quilt shop, & the quilt they were making had a Bethlehem Star as a part of it, and several of the ladies were having a but of a struggle (with all the diagonal seams/edges) to get the Bethlehem Star part to lay down flat. So, I then decided that I wanted to come up with a way to make the star design without all of the diagonal cuts.

While most of all of that was going on - I was still teaching part-time, & was also helping with caring for my Mom, who had been placed in Hospice care at home. Mom & I had some wonderful talks while she continued to make homemade cards from her bed. (…& these cards are now priceless treasures to all of us!). Several times we talked about my desire to make a Bethlehem Star style quilt and my desire to make it a ‘gingham’ star, as well as no bias edges. I had pretty much given up on it & she told me that she knew she would love it, but that I should not let it frustrate me, & to “put it away" for awhile. She told me that when the time was right, I would be ready to figure it all out & when I was ready, she was sure it would be a quilt that would be her favorite.

So, I did. I filed away the idea - but it was always in my heart. We said goodbye to Mom a few months later, & my time became filled with so many other things & with my quilt design business that began to take up all of my time. A few years later, I was doodling in my favorite grid notebook & I almost absent-mindedly sketched a Bethlehem Star design… but this time using half-square triangles instead of diamonds with bias edges. I automatically shaded in the colors - creating a gingham pattern. It felt so effortless. I also decided I didn’t want to have any Y-seams for anyone to have to tackle - so the background was set & that was that.

Morning Star - piecing

Throughout the time I made my Morning Star quilt - my Mom was on my mind… it was as if she was there right along with me. I made it with one of her favorite colors - a soft red & then also warm pink. 

It is one of my most favorite of all my quilts. I really feel like it’s a quilt that was made by Mom & me.

Morning Star - draped

So… when I opened the email from Martingale that had the cover proof on it… First there were tears… and then I immediately knew that Mom was smiling down on me… & we were enjoying the moment together. (Incredible ‘Godwink’!!)

Acorn Cottage cover

The team at Martingale couldn’t have chosen a better photo for the cover. (…& the book is filled with amazing photos!) I love the setting, the faded red metal roof… & beautiful rose in full bloom that compliments the quilt colors. A little bit of heavenly perfection to me.

So - there you have my ‘Morning Star’ quilt. If you’ve ever wanted to make a Bethlehem Star style quilt - but didn’t because of the bias construction, I hope you’ll give my optional (& much easier) way of constructing this wonderful design!

Here’s to more amazing ‘Godwinks’!



(I'll be back with more quilts from 'Acorn Cottage', and until then, if you want to get more peeks at the projects included in the book, Martingale, Amazon, & Barnes & Noble have posted a bunch of photos. You can pre-order at any of their websites (as well as mine), & I also want to encourage you - if you have a local quilt shop - to let them know & ask them to order it for you!)



What a beautiful story. Which of your fabrics did you use for this quilt. I love the contrast.

Monica June 07, 2021

I had tears in my eyes as i read about your Bethlehem Star quilt. Truly this was a Godwink. It reminded me that God cares about every part of our life, even quilts we want to make. Nothing is too small or insignificant to Him!!

Miriam Olson April 10, 2020

I just love this!! The quilt and the story. I’m so glad that both you and your mom had a part in this quilt!

Susan February 27, 2020

What a beautiful quilt and the story that goes with the making of this quilt.

Ginger February 14, 2020

What a beautiful story about your mom and this quilt. For sure a Godwink!! Thank you for sharing this wonderful blessing.

Karen S February 14, 2020

What a special, special story. Thank you so much for sharing that with us! I love this quilt, and am sooooooooo looking forward to having this book in my hands soon. I pray that it is a huge blessing to many others too.

Colleen Coffman February 14, 2020

How wonderful to have your Mums memory tied up in such a soecial quilt. What a beautiful story. Congratulations on Acorn Cottage.

Deb Walters February 13, 2020

It’s so special Bren. I know I’ll be thinking of you, your mom, my mom and Godwinks when I make my Bethlehem Star quilt.

Mary Andra Holmes February 13, 2020

Beautiful, the quilt and the live story!

Debbie February 13, 2020

What a beautiful story and testament to how a bit of wisdom kindly given produce endless blessings. This made me cry.

Lorraine Vermeer February 13, 2020

Absolutely gorgeous quilt! Off to see more of your quilts on the sites above. Congratulations!

Deb February 13, 2020

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