Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Whirlwind Seminar - AQSG (Better Late than Never)

In September I attended my seventh AQSG seminar. It was held in Cherry Hill, New Jersey this year. I meant to post about it sooner but ... things sort of got away from me this fall.
I took four study centers and learned alot about regional characteristics in quilts of New York and New Jersey, Pennsylvania German bed covers (especially woven coverlets) and crib quilts. Our keynote speaker talked about Japanese quilts. Quite a smorgasbord ...........here's a small taste.

Many applique motifs were inspired by botanical forms and this design, documented almost exclusively from New York, may be related to the sassafras plant.  Notice the tree borders on both which are also associated with New York.

Crib quilts from the 19th century are relatively rare and therefore sought after ( and the market price reflects that scarcity).  These beauties are both c. 1830.These are the earliest examples I have had the opportunity to see.  Crib quilts at that time were made with the same fabrics and in the same style as quilts for larger beds. 

Crib and doll quilts, especially before 1900, are very collectible.

I am especially fond of the blue and white woven coverlets ...

...but who can resist a crib sized example - quite rare according to Trish Herr, the presenter. Multi-colored with eagles, roses and stars it is dated 1834.

Some characteristics of quilts from New Jersey are pieced blocks set on the diagonal with sashing, infrequent use of light background or setting squares and simple quilting. Taught by Rachel Cochran and Barbara Schaffer who were two of the women who wrote New Jersey Quilts 1777 - 1950 they used the term "Dark and Diagonal".

The Pennsylvania German aesthetic is unmistakable.  This table at  the Welcome Reception is a striking example.

A double blue print is used as the background color of the quilt below. Pink, green, red, orange, yellow... a colleague once remarked of the PA 'Dutch' look, "too much is never enough!"

If you are serious about quilt history think about supporting AQSG  by becoming a member and be sure to mark your calendars for Oct 3-7, 2012 for the next seminar to be held in Lincoln, Nebraska, home of the International Quilt Study Center.

You will not regret it!


  1. Those first two quilts make me think of a bunch of kids leaving their handprint on a fingerpainting! Okay--so I was trained as an early childhood educator. : )
    Love those last three quilts--especially "dark and diagonal".

  2. Spectacular applique and wonderful pieced quilts. Makes the heart speed up to look at all of them! Thanks for this post.

  3. I am going next year no matter what! Thanks for sharing your experience. Love the crib quilts.

  4. It was an info packed long weekend - besides all of the stunning quilts. See you in Lincoln!

  5. Funny you should mention hands, Janet.She actually referred to it as "Happy Hands" - even though it has six fingers it just does remind us of hands!

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  7. beautiful quilts, just beautiful
    thank you for sharing and sharing the info as well.
    always love learning about quilt history.
    The first two quilts are just amazing to me
    I love the tree borders
    thanks again

  8. What a treat to see these great quilts! The New Jersey book is my all-time favorite. And, a crib sized coverlet; never seen that before. Great post.

  9. Thanks for sharing these!...I love the applique quilts...amazing patterns....and the blue and white coverlets are great...I see the relation to quilt patterns!!


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