The Cottage Orné Quilt

The Cottage Orné Quilt
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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Two Folk Quilts

Browsing through Pinterest this morning I found this image -

There was no information attached to the pin, but then I found it again on a group I follow on Facebook this time with details.  It is to be in an exhibition on 14th April entitled "Common Threads: Selections from the Textile Collections of the Goschenhoppen Historians, the Mennonite Heritage Center, and the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center." Both the Mennonites and the Schwenkfelder will be holding concurrent exhibits featuring quilts, needlework, clothing, personal accessories and household textiles dating from the late 18th to the early 20th centuries -- all Pennsylvania German in origin. The Schwenkfelder is located in Pennsburg PA and the Mennonite Heritage Center in Harleysville, PA 

I would love an opportunity to view this coverlet, it is unquilted so not a quilt.  As soon as I saw it I thought of the Darowen coverlet which I blogged about a while ago, which I think is one of the most amazing pieces of textile folk art.

At first glance they both seem to have a rather wild format but on closer inspection you can see that this isn't so and that some thought has been given to the placement of the pieces.

The first coverlet is thought to have been made in south eastern Pennsylvania and is owned by the Goschenhoppen Historians in Green Lane, Montgomery County, PA.  I wonder who made it and if, like the Darowen coverlet, it was made by more than one person, three sisters, the daughters of the Vicar of Darowen?

This type of textile is quite rare, but when one comes up I find them uttering intriguing.  They look as if everything has been thrown into the mix and they are interesting to study on many levels.  I have had the pleasure of examining the Welsh one closely and it had quite a profound affect on me.  I delved into it's history and visited the place where it was made.  I would love to see the Pennsylvanian one up close but have to be content with just this image!

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Fantastic Sampler!

I just had to share this image with you -

This sampler is in the collection of the Cooper Hewitt
Museum in New York and is English worked in 1610 by Elizabeth Hine and here is the link.  You will notice that underneath the image on the museum site it says -
                "please don't steal our images - yeah! "

Now for some reason this makes me very irritable.  What is with these museums?  They sit on vast collections of stuff, it hardly ever sees the light of day, rarely is written about, as they usually don't know much about what they hold and now, through the power of the Internet, they have almost been forced to let us see what they have got!  However, they don't want us to take a copy for ourselves, or pass it around our friends, so they too can enjoy it!

Do you think this is what they mean?  If so, I have stolen their image and let you see this wonderful sampler because it is very wonderful!

Firstly it is extremely early and I haven't seen anything like it before.  It has obviously been influenced by the 17th century Stuart embroideries but is more domestic.  It's form is rather like a crazy quilt and the stitcher has picked out all her favourite motifs and sort of cobbled them together!  I just love it and feel quite inspired!

Do hope I won't get into deep do do for blogging about this!


I found this sampler, also from the Cooper Hewitt Museum which struck me as somewhat similar to the one above - though this time there is no warning about stealing images!

It isn't nearly as complex as the first sampler but it has the same feel and though the date seems to be missing it is said to be late 18th century English!

This brings me to the comments - yes you are right Susan, the costumes do look 18th century.  I was so taken with the look of the sampler that I overlooked that detail, yet it is dated 1610.   However, it does look similar to the one above which is said to be much later!

Regarding museums and stealing images, I wrote about that rather impetuously but on reflection perhaps I should have written to the museum and asked them to define what they actually meant by stealing?  After all what I am actually doing is bringing these images to the attention of a wider audience and providing a link to their website.  I am not using them for commercial gain, which is perhaps what they mean by stealing?  Maybe I will email them and ask and I might even get a reply?

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Preparing for May!

Now that things are almost back to normal after the festivities and the decorations are down at last, my thoughts have turned to the two days I will be teaching at the Jen Jones Quilt Centre in Lampeter.  I like to have time to think myself into the zone and prepare lots of samples!

This year we will be tackling Broderie Perse or Chintz Applique and I don't know if it is because I'm tuned in to it, but there does seem to be quite a bit of it being done at the moment.  I have noticed that Australian quilters in particular are producing wonderful quilts incorporating this technique.

Here are shots of some work in progress -

The above two pictures are of a centre of a medium sized quilt which is waiting to have it's final border attached.  Then it has to go into the quilting queue.  You will notice that I am still in the process of attaching the basket.  As it is black on black it is hard going!

The three images below are for a central panel and I'm not quite sure where this is going to go yet?  As you can see it is work in progress but the fabrics are lighter so it's much easier to sew!

Below are two long fragments of Toile with just one lovely elephant!  I chose one of my favourite tickings and photocopied the fabric and cut it up!

This might be the finished piece?  I'm still deliberating!

Here is another piece of Toile which one of my friends gave me!  Again I photocopied it - that's why it looks lighter -

This is the paper mock-up, I haven't yet taken a picture of the fabric version but at the moment I am attaching it.  Again it is slow work as it is dark and quite heavy going!

Here is a finished piece incorporated into one of my early quilts -

I really enjoy this technique, whereas I don't enjoy doing needle turn or other applique.  It's like being a child again, cutting up bits and making a picture.  I also love attaching the pieces with herringbone stitch, which was how it was done in olden days.  My friend said the other day - it's old fashioned zig zag!  Which of course you can do, but you know me!

I will be teaching this at Jen's Quilt Centre on 16th May, 2014 - here is the link if you are interested -

Monday, 6 January 2014

New Year Blues

I'm feeling as unsettled as our present weather!  One minute the sun is shining, next it is pelting with heavy rain. Then there is a roll of thunder with a flash of lightning, this is followed by hail stones!  I know how it feels as I can't seem to settle on one thing either.  Though I have so many projects to finish, because it's the beginning of a new year, I feel like doing something new, but so far I am resisting!

Browsing on line is the best work displacement yet and here as some results -

The above sold at an auction in the USA last year for $3,000 and was listed as a rare English pieced bedspread.  It had a written label attached saying that it had been made by Ann Oliver who had married John Bright of ------  England in 1765.  Unfortunately the person reading the label couldn't decipher the place name which is a great pity!  Here is the link to the auction which has a zoom facility so that you can have a better view!  I would like to go in much closer and be able to examine the different fabrics.  Oh the frustration!

This is precisely the sort of patchwork I was writing about when I compared Amish to multi-fabric quilts. This sort of patchwork draws you in even if the initial impact isn't as great as a bold Amish one!  Even so, it makes quite an impact doesn't it?

I love the simple shapes, there is no need to go to elaborate lengths, squares and triangles are all you really need as this wonderful example testifies?

Then there is this one, or is it a back and front?  I can't make it out?

It, or they, are on this site which is a teaching and learning resource of the University of Wisconsin.  However, I don't understand it and one has to download some device to get at more information.  I chickened out at this stage, because I simply hate downloading special devices, I just find it scary!

Is it just me that is being stupid here, and if so why don't they make it clearer?  After all it is supposed to be making information available to fellow stupid people in the world at large?  Anyone out there brave enough to try and report back?