March 17, 2021

A Beauty of a Quilt

 Here's a gorgeous quilt.  It's as simple as that.

This quilt came to me for repair.  The quilt dates to c1850.  As old as it is, it is in nearly pristine condition, save for a place in the center where it got wet somehow with something.

Here's how fabric looks in an undamaged block.

You can see that whatever spilled on the quilt ate away at the brown fabric, and also carried some of the dye into the white background.  It's interesting (though sad, of course) to witness how the liquid ran along the fibers of the fabric. 

The dye also shadowed on to another block, and bled all the way through to the back.

The owner and I agreed that patching with another fabric was not an option, given the age of the quilt and skill of the quiltmaker.  

I put crepeline over the 4 damaged diamonds to help protect the damaged fabric.  Crepeline is a super fine silk.  (A previous post about crepeline.)  Here is one of the damaged diamonds - as is on the left - with brown crepeline lying on top the right.  You can (just barely) tell the crepeline is there because the batting in the holes is just slightly darker, and you can see the edge lying against the pink diamond on the right.

Here is the finished block with crepeline:

And now - here are many photos for you to enjoy!

So many gorgeous fabrics:

The quilting is gorgeous - a unique alternate block design:

(Photo courtesy of quilt owner)

Quadruple diagonal lines in the tulip border!

The overall views are spectacular!  I couldn't stop myself from adding a few more.


  1. This post is a visual feast, Ann! Most of the vintage quilts that come my way (and modern ones, too, for that matter) far fall short of this perfection. The piecing and quilting are just exquisite. Thanks for linking back to your earlier post about your process using crepeline. I just had a client send me photos of a quilt with one block where there is serious disintegration of the fabrics, but they are INTERESTING fabrics that I'd hate to cover. I'll have to wait until I see the quilt in person, of course, but I'm so glad to have this technique as an option for mitigating further deterioration without completely obscuring the original textiles. Thank you!

  2. "A visual feast" is such a great way to talk about this quilt! I don't see many that are this great either. I'm glad the crepeline post is going to help you out. It's tricky to work with, but just the thing for protecting special fabrics. I visited your website. Looks like we are on the same page when it comes to loving old quilts!