Thursday, December 22, 2011

Red and Green II

Holiday quilt #2 is a c. 1850  floral applique.

Red and green was a popular color scheme at that time and many 'best' quilts from that period have survived. Their graphic beauty, originality and fine workmanship make them a favorite of collectors today.

Many seem to have been made for special occasions. I wonder if the hearts in this nine-block quilt indicate that it was a bride's quilt.

82" x 92"
In the full view you will notice that the center block is a bit smaller than the rest. Also, there are only three borders; very logical to me. Why do all that work on a top border that will not be visible when on the bed?
Also, in this view you see an unfortunate problem. Sometime in the last 150 years the bottom border was damaged. I wonder what happened? Could it have been  tucked into the bottom of a bed with wooden foot-board and the wood stained it? I'd love to hear your ideas on the possibilities though I know it's hard to tell from a photo.

Here's a closer look at the damage..... sniff sniff

When I bought it I thought I might be able to 'fix' it but now I think it would be a huge task and probably not turn out very well.

Back to its allure....The little shapes that look like kites on the floral vine border are unusual, don't you think? The embroidery thread attaching it to the vine is blue now - was it once green?

The quilting includes  triple rod straight lines and diagonal crosshatching - both done right through the motif .

Even a quilt with 'problems' can be appreciated as is. I  put it on the bed with the damaged side toward the wall and no one is the wiser!

Or display it on the quilt rack....

I like to study old quilts and incorporate things I notice in my own work. Here's a wall size quilt I made a few years ago on which I quilted through the applique motifs. The inspiration for this wall piece was a bed quilt in the collection of Anita Shakelford. I'll share more about this project in a future post.
42" square

I wish you all a wonderful holiday! 
May you be warmed by the love of your friends and family...
 and by a cherished quilt!


  1. I LOVE the quilt you made . It is a beautiful pattern and a great size for a wall hanging!
    I loved the fact that the antique quilt had a smaller block in the center. Wish we could hear the stories of the maker!

  2. What a great vintage quilt; I am so happy that you could see past it's shortcomings, and give it a good home. It is wonderful, as is your crib quilt! Anxious to read about that one!

  3. Glad that vintage quilt is appreciated and not curled up in a dog bed somewhere!
    Your little quilt is a beauty--nice stitching!

  4. Red & green quilts... a favorite combo! The antique quilt is lovely, though it has suffered fabric deterioration. I bet you are right.. the end of the quilt was tucked down into the footboard of the bed. Your quilt project is lovely... the vining is so graceful. I do notice that many of the R&G vintage quilts have quilting lines right through the applique motifs. So you made yours quite "authentic". Lovely!

  5. What a great quilt!
    I guess a bed tuck against springs maybe on the end?
    I'm with you - wouldn't alter it.
    The wall quilt is a stunner as well.
    Thank you for sharing!

  6. I love the antique quilt!...and I would not do any repair...It looks beautiful as it is....Age can be beautiful

    I love the one you made as well....very nicely done

  7. I agree with age can be beautiful. The quilt is useable as is. Now, I have one that Buttercup chewed a hole through the center....that one needs repair. I really enjoyed reading this post.

  8. Oh, I love Red & Green applique quilts! And I especially like how you used a border design to make a "strippy" wall hanging, Jean. It makes me want to start my own today1 But I have several other project )some very old!!) that I must do first, right?


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