Monday, March 25, 2019

Pinwheel Star--Variation

A graphic quilt from an online auction.
It seems to have a strip pieced back.

The pattern?
It's a lot like BlockBase #3818
but the central star points are longer than a regular star diamond.

BlockBase #3818 was first published in the Ladies' Art Company catalog as
Pin Wheel Star about 1890. The Nancy Cabot column in the Chicago Tribune
called it Star and Wreath in the 1930s.

The Ladies Art Co. sketch

John Sauls's inventory

The Ladies Art was quite an influential pattern source
and most of these quilts from online auctions were probably made
from their pattern.

The shading makes a difference.

A bad photo from the Indiana project and the Quilt Index/
It probably looks much like the example above it.

Southern, late 19th century-early 20th

More diamonds in the star

North Carolina Project & the Quilt Index

Another Southern quilt with a more complicated center star.

I clicked on QuickQuilt in BlockBase and changed the colors
with Photoshop

And squeezed a lot of templates for a 12" block
on one sheet.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Friendship Garden

You gotta love a quilt pattern that gives you a spot for a big red dot.

It's not a traditional 19th-century pattern but one of those designer blocks from
the Laura Wheeler/Alice Brooks syndicate about 1935-45.

BlockBase # 3597
Friendship Garden

It's one of their signature designs that create secondary patterns in the corners

Also gotta love the fabric choices of the 1950s & '60s

Allena Maphet Elder, Texas, 1960s
From the Wyoming project & the Quit Index

The center shape is an octagon and the corner shape can be seen as a curve
or two straight lines.

It presents some piecing challenges as you can see.

I saw the corner dot as a curve in BlockBase.
Here's a QuickQuilt of 16 blocks.

The BlockBase pattern would be easier with another seam, so I exported
3596 to Electric Quilt and drew a corner seam.

And had EQ8 draw a corner of a 15" block  to give us templates.

Print this on an 8-1/2" x 11 sheet of paper.
The quarter of the block is 7-1/2" finished.

I had so much fun with this block I decided to draw
a whole Block of the Month for next year based on
the basic geometry. Will probably start in the summer.
(Not for the faint-hearted.)

See other variations on the pattern:
Scroll down.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Star & Crescent

Signature quilt dated 1917, Cedar Lake Wisconsin
Iowa quilt project & the Quilt Index

Here's a classic pieced design. You could applique it but
in the 19th century, it was all pieced.

Here's a pattern for an 8" block.
The pieced designs have a seam going into the corner.
BlockBase #3903

Many names:
Ruth Finley called it Star & Crescent in 1929,
Capper's Weekly published it as Compass in 1931.
Hearth & Home---Star of the West

Here's a date-inscribed example, 1859

1859, Jenny M Foote Wakeman, Taylor County Museum in 
Iowa, Iowa Project and the Quilt Index.

Cindy Vermillion Hamilton's collection
#3903 with corner seam

But there are earlier undated examples with rainbow prints in Prussian blue, stitched perhaps 1840-1860.

From an online auction
#3902 no corner seam. People thought NOTHING of
piecing that green curve into the corner piece.
(Some people.)

Needlecraft skills suffered in the last quarter of the century.

Block from Mary Barton's collection. Iowa project
& the Quilt Index.
No corner seam.

I'd be piecing #3903 with the corner seam, thank you.
Some might advise applique.

Monday, March 4, 2019

Hospital Sketches Block #2: Virginia Cockscomb

Cockscomb from the collection of Lynn Evans Miller
Mid-19th century

Bettina Havig's version of Hospital Sketches #2
Virginia Cockscomb

The Cockscomb is Block #2 in the Hospital Sketches BOM of fashionable mid-19th-century designs. See a post with a pattern at Civil War Quilts:

Late-19th century
The popularity of this rather eccentric design is surprising.

Attributed to Berks County, Pennsylvania

How the pattern was handed around and any regional preferences are hard to figure out. You see it a lot in Virginia, but you also see it a lot in Indiana.

The design wasn't published until 1900 or so,
decades after quilters began using it.

 "When Patchwork Becomes an Art"
by Rebecca Mosenfelder Simon
Ladies' Home Journal, 1908.

Simon called it The Olive Branch, a symbol of peace.

This quilt, quite mid-19th-century, looks a lot like her example.

The Ladies' Art Company also called it The Olive Branch.
You could buy a finished block for 85 cents from them.
I'll take 9.

Collection of the Belchertown Historical Society
From the Massachusetts project & the Quilt Index.

It's also surprising to see how often it was used in samplers
and friendship quilts.

Here's an antique from Judy Roche's collection and her
smaller copy.

Dillow Collection in the International Quilt Study Center & Museum,

dated 1861, attributed to Fulton County, Pennsylvania

From Julie Silber's inventory
Most of these are from the mid-19th century when the pattern appeared.

Even though I can't tell you much about its history I have a lot of photos. Since we like to look at quilts here are some pictures of the cockscomb and its variations:

Four way symmetry dated 1859 from a Bonham's Auction

Two way symmetry from Jeffrey Evans Auction
in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia (I think.)

Various parts re-assembled

From the collection of the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum
20th century

Another 20th-century version

With the Vessel, Vine & Floral border, by Frances
Shaw of Hagerstown, Maryland. West Virginia project
and the Quilt Index.

From Molly at Fourth Corner Antiques
A Different flower at the base

Jean Stanclift owns an antique that she copied for our Sunflower
Pattern Cooperative book Cranberry Collection.

Jean's pattern is very much like one below from the Carlson Collection
of Four-Block Quilts at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum.

IQSCM #2009.044.0007 

As a border from a Pook & Pook Auction


Several quilt historians asked where the bird was. This one
from Bill Volckening.
See more about the bird:

Subtraction Below

By Emily Johnson, North Carolina Project & the Quilt Index


Posts on the pattern

Buy our Cranberry Collection book with Jean Stanclift's pattern: