Thursday, October 31, 2013

Pumpkin Patch

Someone asked me about this pattern last year
and I couldn't find it in my Encyclopedia of Applique.
The patterns are categorized by construction
and this is one of the rather unusual designs that
has a large central image with four arms extending out to the corners.

Most applique designs have four elements growing out of the center north, east, south and west
plus four arms extending out to the corners, something I categorized as Four Plus Four...

As in this design numbered 22.41 in the Encyclopedia of Applique called Mexican Rose in the early 20th century pattern catalog from the Ladies' Art Company.

Where they sold it as an applique and a quilting pattern.

The closest thing I can find to the pattern of the day today
is their
Ladies Art Company #508
My #12.68
It has the same concentric rings in the center with
four arms but little of the grace of the quilts
actually made in that pattern.
Of which I have found many.

Quilt by the exhibitor's great-great-grandmother,
Laura Ellen Davis Coffman, who lived in Salem, Indiana
 See Lisa's blog here:

There is variety in the centers, flowers, circles and pie crust like shapes

Online auction, possibly last quarter of the 19th century.

Found in the Ohio Quilt Project
The mid-19th century versions
tend to have fancier borders.

The pattern was one of those popular 19th-century designs
that seems never to have been published in the
20th century so it fell out of use.

This one's unusual in the colors reflecting the early 20th century
claret reds and indigo blues
rather than the mid-19th century Turkey red and green.

  You see it as a Four-Block set and as smaller blocks set all over.

The tan was probably once green.

As in this one from the end of the 19th century.

Here's a fabulous mid-century example found in the New York State
Quilt Project. Note the heart shape in the
corner florals.

Similar heart shape in a quilt shown
at the Wisconsin Quilt Museum

And another from an online auction

Here's a 36" block with a fancy shape in the corners.
I guess that many of these floral centers were cut
like a snowflake. Fold a circle of fabric into twelve pie shape pieces.
Then scallop the edge with your scissors
And applique them down.

You do see that pie crust shape too without the corners

Particularly in mid-19th-century album samplers.

I think we should call it Pumpkin.

Read more about the Ladies Art Company at Connie Chung's webpage


  1. What an interesting block! I like this one quite a bit... it's giving me ideas. Thanks, Barbara!

  2. What delightful blocks - thanks for a wonderful post!

  3. One of my favorite applique patterns. That is a lovely example from the Santa Ynez Valley Historical Museum...thank you for sharing more information on this pattern. It's definitely on my to do list.

  4. Lisa---Thanks for clarifying where they exhibit was. I think we need a pumpkin revival.

  5. The Chester Criswell Quilt (2nd photo from the bottom) has a few pie crust edged blocks. It's a 1852 signature quilt made by friends and family so the skill levels vary quite a bit.

  6. Found one yesterday in Portland. Here's a link to my blog post about it: http://willywonkyquilts.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-start-car-quilt.html