Monday, February 19, 2018

Minor Pattern Variation=Major Rabbit Hole

Rebecca Haarer had a pattern name question on one of the quilt sites. What would you call this design? We all said Democrat Rose, Whig Rose or Rose of Sharon. It's quite common.

The Rose of Sharon is a good name. This one by Charlotte Raynor
is in the Shelburne Museum's collection.

Democrat Rose from Marie Webster's 1915 book.
The pattern is one of the most popular appliques in the 1840-1880 period.
There are many example in my Encyclopedia of Applique, filed as 4+4 blocks
(Four motifs north/south axis---Four different repeats on the diagonal.)

One of the elements is a comb, a spiky shape.
The Encyclopedia of Applique number is 18

Spice Pink from Ruth Finley's 1929 book

Rebecca said No, and pointed out the center floral---“Conjoined cock’s combs." She wrote:
"I’ve been contemplating the differences. It almost seems as though this maker combined the 'rooster combs' of the Democratic rose into one blossom. Most of the Whig roses don’t have spiky but the more common rounded flower petal shapes."

She's right. I did a little digital altering of Charlotte Raynor's block
to show it with a circle of spiky points rather than 4 separate combs.

It took me a while to find other vintage quilts with the same construction, mainly because I was looking the 4+4 files. With one circular spiky shape in the center it's more like a #12.8xx

Center floral plus 4 identical arms.

EBay seller GB-Best

From the Western Pennsylvania project and the Quilt Index.
There are not a lot of these spiky centers with the rotating arms.

Collection of the International Quilt Study Center
 & Museum #1997_007_0792

Sometimes the difference is subtle between 4 combs or 1 circle.

Late 19th-century variation. 
Guess based on the way the green has faded to tan.

Here's a real beauty. Source?

Mid-19th century

Rebecca wanted to know because she is working with a decorator at the Carlisle Inn in Sarasota Florida to name each floor after a quilt block pattern.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Folded Valentine Scherenschnitte

If you are feeling ambitious for Valentine's Day you could do
a little snipping.

And make a Valentine block.

There are quite a few of these scherenschnitte (cut paper) blocks with hearts.

Some are rather difficult to see in samplers. This one fairly simple.

The next one fabulously complex.

WVA project

Quilts Inc

Block from a mid-19th-century sampler album

From the Flack collection by a Pennsylvania Moravian

An ad from dealer Phyllis Haders years ago in the Clarion magazine.
H mmm.

From an article I wrote for Quilters Newsletter years ago.

Monday, February 5, 2018


Quilt from about 1890-1910
in the pattern published as Pyrotechnics
by the Ladies Art Company about 1890.

It's BlockBase #3461,
also published as Wheel or Wheel of Fortune

The 12 refers to the number of spokes in the
published pattern. The center is a hollow wheel or flower.

Surrounded by a single ring of triangular points.
In the Ladies Art drawing and in the BlockBase pattern
 the sunflower fits into a circle with curved shapes.

Straight lines here in this one from about 1880-1900

Indiana Project & the Quilt Index
The ring of triangular shapes sometimes seems to
have a little curve to those triangle sides.

The Newcomb Loom company sold a pattern for the design with curved triangles.

Perhaps the source for...

 Carrie Hall's early 1930s block at the 
Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas.

A top by Mrs. W.M.O. Moss found
in the Louisiana Project

So much like Carrie Hall's block,
which was not published in color until the 1980s.

Which came first the Ladies Art Company pattern or the quilts?

I  have photos of several that look to be older than the
published pattern.

From Jeffrey Evans antiques. Novel shading.

All in red and greens

From Cow Hollow Antiques

And from the Sign of the Whale Antiques

With added applique

Siotha Hibbs Longmire, from the Tennessee Project
This one may be earlier too. It has no hollow circle in the center and
there are 8 spokes.

Here's a great version from Susan Dague's collection.
About 1950

Rather unconventional fabric choices but it works.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Southern Pineapple

A classic pattern from a late 19th-century quilt
auctioned in Virginia in the past few years.

Cindy at Cindy's antique quilts had a question about the pattern. She
had two in her booth.

The collectors and historians who chimed in agreed it was Southern.

I was surprised to see how many photos I had in the file.

Here's one by Betty Meeks McKenzie from
the Louisiana Project & the Quilt Index.
Several have one end trimmed to fit the bed.

Another from the Louisiana Project.
This actually could be the exact same quilt---
photographed before fading and after.
These end of the century Southern solids fade in
a New York minute (cross cultural reference.)

Good blue/bad blue.
I've seen this one on Jeffrey Evans auction site and Burley's.

The pattern has a number in my Encyclopedia of Applique.
#17.51, published on the cover of the South Carolina project

where it was called Pineapple.

Pineapple seems to be the most consistent name. Here's one
publiished as Pineapple in the book Stitchers in Time: Ozark Quilts
And it does look like the fruit.

Made by Saloma & Emma Cornett about 1900.

Most I have photos of seem to be from about 1880-1920.

But Tim at Tim Quilts showed a fabulous example in mid-20th-century solids.

I've never seen it published in the vintage literature as a commercial pattern....Probably passed around hand to hand as a paper pattern or a block, perhaps sold by an enterprising pattern drafter or traced off a quilt.

Some have a circle in the center like this one from Cindy's

Some a simple floral like the Cornetts

And some nothing at all where the pineapples meet.

How old is the pattern?

Here's one with blanket-stitched applique done in Turkey
red and green. It could be 1850s or 60s....

With it's fancy diamond border.

And that brown and blue one....

It has a chintz stripe border that looks like
a stripe printed "for the Portuguese."
See more at this post:

Could it be 1840s or '50s?

The design seems to have evolved from the common oakleaf and reel
block that goes back to about 1830, found all over the Eastern seaboard....

Signature block from Chester County, Pennsylvania.

Shelburne Museum collection

....combined with this more common pineapple block
dating back to the 1840s.

A pattern of sorts to print as a whole or a quarter. 

It has to have all those wiggly edges.