One of the things I have to do every summer is attend the Cruso Quilt Show. Even though I’m not a quilter, I’m enough of a textile lover and appreciator to love spending an hour or so examining the quilts, both modern and vintage. I always learn something and I always see something that is new to me.
The bowtie quilt above is a vintage quilt top that has been newly finished using machine stitches.
This is a new quilt made from vintage fabrics and feedsacks. The fabrics had belonged to the quilter’s mother-in-law.
Quilts are meant to be seen from a distance, but also close up. I love the visual impact of a beautiful quilt, but the little squares are sometimes design marvels by themselves.
In the quilting world, things are not always as they seem. This quilt is made from modern reproductions of vintage fabrics. The maker could have gone one step further into vintageland by using a natural muslin for the background fabric.
This one is vintage, and after looking at a lot of vintage and reproductions, the background fabrics are usually a big hint as to which is which.
This quilt that uses reproduction fabrics really caught my eye, and not only because it is so bold. Some of the fabrics in this quilt are reproductions of the “neons” of 1892 through 1900 that I learned about back in April when I found some old swatches.
I have the originals on which the leaf prints are patterned. Even the colors are the same.
Crazy quilts are associated with the Victorians, but women were still making them in the mid twentieth century. The fabrics in this quilt date from the 1930s through the 1960s. This method of making crazy squares is more obvious without all the Victorian embellishment.
This vintage quilt had the best dancing elephant fabric.
This vintage quilt is interesting for several reasons. First, I need to point out that the squares are very small, about one and a half inches across. This was obviously made by someone who saved even the smallest scraps. Second, note the way the fabrics are positioned, with no attempt to cut the triangles on the grain of the fabric. And finally, there was not much effort put into matching the corners. We tend to thing that old equals quality, but in many cases that is just not true. Today quilting is a craft, something that people do for fun, but for many women in the past, it was just work that had to be done.
And I’ll end with a new quilt, this one made by my sister-in-law for my niece’s soon to be born baby boy. I love the bold colors!
Correction: I changed the word foundation to background in the paragraph following the fourth photo. Thanks to my more-knowledgeable-than-me readers for keeping me straight.
12 responses to “Cruso Quilt Show, 2015”
That one with the scrap triangles reminds me very much of the extremely functional quilts/quilt tops made by my grandmother in the 1930s, both in the fabrics used (which look very similar indeed) and in the apparently scant regard to technique. She obviously whizzed through the task – for task it was! But I find them appealing, for that very reason. They are unassuming documents of domestic history.
I can’t imagine that the maker of that quilt was “enjoying the process”!
It does not speak ‘joy’! 😉
PS I really like the bow-tie one!
I love your sister-in-laws…the blocks seem to “float’ on the ground fabric-and your leaves-wonderful colors..i naturally agree with Scrapiana -they are documents. now I must find mine-made from menswear suiting fabrics from 1910’s -40’s. Thank You Lizzie! They are all beautiful!
Your quilt sounds interesting. I love quilts made from old woolens.
Gorgeous. Bring back this method of upcycling old remnants. I love it!
So do I!
Always more to learn about the old quilts! Thanks!
Prepare to learn some more…
Great article as I am a quilter. Not sure what you meant by “foundation fabric” re: fourth photo of modern fabric quilt. Did you mean background fabric? Or is this an appliqued quilt? Foundation fabric specifically refers to fabric to which other fabric is sewn (on top of).
So I should change “foundation” to background? The pinwheels are appliqued to the white.