QUILTS & FABRIC: PAST & PRESENT

Above: Reproduction Print and Document

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Tessellations 4: More 4-Sided Parallelograms

Charm quilt from Stella Rubin's online quilt shop
About 1870-1900
Some of the most beautiful charm quilts are made of parallelograms.

Annabella Milbanke, Lady Byron

I'm stuck in the world of tesselating parallelograms.
Sort of like the mathematically-minded Lady Byron whose unpleasant husband called her the Princess of Parallelograms. Was that an insult or a compliment?

I'm taking it as a compliment.

Detail of a quilt from Ann Wasserman's collection

Diamonds with 60 degree angles are versatile parallelograms.

Quilt about 1870-1900

BlockBase #142a 
Variegated Diamonds according to the Ladies' Art Company about 1898

They can be shaded to look like cubes or blocks...

stars...

About 1900




BlockBase 142d

or stars and cubes.

Detail of Stella Rubin's vintage quilt
6-pointed stars...

BlockBase # 143a

Quilt about 1870-1900 from Marie Mueller's shop.
A very versatile shape.


About 1890-1925
You can stack them too

About 1940-60

About 1840-60

From Laura Fisher's online shop


Two other stacking and shading ideas:
BlockBase 141 a & b.

One piece arranged like a star but
shaded to make a pinwheel


The other common parallelogram we use is cut with 45 degree angles.
It's the one used for an 8-pointed star


It isn't as versatile as the 60 degree diamond.
There just aren't as many ways this diamond will tessellate

You can stack them and they will tessellate all the way to the
edge, with just a little chopping to get them squared up.


You can make them into an 8-pointed star
but
Collection of the Brooklyn Museum

You have to work to get the edges to resolve
It is possible to resolve the edges.
But I have never been tempted.

Here's a parallelogram that is not in BlockBase. 
I guess I never saw it published with a name.

Some vintage examples, above about 1900;
Below about 1880

Stacking seems to be the option.

A similar look from Laura Fisher's online shop

You can get the same look with triangles and it might be easier.

These tessellation puzzles are totally addicting.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Ouch! One Tiny Mistake...

A little Munch, a little Photoshopping.

You know how it goes.

You get the whole thing quilted and bound



And then

Your best friend points out a tiny mistake.

Today's quilters may take the offending piece out.

But in the past ...
One wonders if she even noticed it.

There was a time a few years ago when quilt aficionados believed these errors to be deliberate.

"In keeping with the tenets of her religion she carefully incorporated a 'mistake' in each quilt," according to a 1982 advertisement in The Clarion.

You don't hear that explanation so much these days,
which is probably a good thing.


Who can interpret the intentions of an unknown quilter?
Sometimes, stuff just happens.

You see these errors in all kinds of pattern,


But some designs are particularly difficult to keep oriented...

Easily running amuck.
(There's more than one little error in the blue and white Drunkards' Path.)



I've posted about pattern problems several times over the years. Click on these links to see more quilt wrecks.

http://barbarabrackman.blogspot.com/2010/08/hoo-doo-humility-and-deliberate.html
http://barbarabrackman.blogspot.com/2010/10/out-of-control.html
http://barbarabrackman.blogspot.com/2011/12/more-out-of-control-quilts.html
http://barbarabrackman.blogspot.com/2011/02/stars-out-of-control-part-2.html

Friday, October 23, 2015

Morris Earthly Paradise: Quilt Market Introduction





Moda is introducing a new reproduction fabric line of mine at Quilt Market this week in Houston: Morris Earthly Paradise. 

"Our latest collection of William Morris reproductions is named Earthly Paradise for an epic poem written by the great designer. He had many talents, among them novelist, publisher and political activist.

"The fabrics in Earthly Paradise capture the Morris look with seven prints from old swatchbooks and catalogs. Graceful florals dating from 1874 to 1910 include some rarely seen prints by the master and his apprentices. Transplant Morris's Earthly Paradise into your own home with quilts and craftsman decoration inspired by a unique garden view."

Here are links to Moda's pages about the fabric and the project quilt:
http://www.modafabrics.com/fcc_morris-earthly.pdf
http://www.modafabrics.com/sell_sheet_morris_earthly_paradise.pdf

Morris Earthly Paradise
Project Sheet

Morris Earthly Paradise is scheduled for April, 2016, delivery to shops. For another project....

I plan to do a six-month quiltalong,
Morris Hexathon, from May to October, 2016
on this blog. We'll make various hexies as
we discuss a little Morris and hexie history.

We'll be making hexagonal blocks
with 4" sides. 

More later!
Below are the prints in the new collection:

Compton is the signature print for the line.
We've printed the large floral in seven sophisticated colorways.

Compton was designed by John Henry Dearle in 1896.
Dearle took over as lead designer at Morris & Company
when Morris retired. 

Carnation #8336

A small floral, Carnation was designed in 1877 by
Kate Faulkner who worked for the firm in its earlier years.

Vine #8335

Vine is one of the more obscure Morris designs.
It was a woven wool tapestry. The only photo I've ever seen of Vine was in a black and white catalog dated 1910, which attributes it to William Morris (although Morris had died in 1896). 
The copy says it is a hand-woven tapestry in green, red or blue colouring.
We've added a gold.

I'm quite pleased with our transformation from
tapestry to cotton print.

Fritillary is  also a directional print, great for
borders and fussy cutting.

William Morris designed Fritillary for wallpaper
about 1885. Why is it called Fritillary instead of Sunflower?

If you look closely behind the sunflowers you can see the fritillaries---
 bell-shaped blooms with dotted coloring. Morris enjoyed
naming his prints for the minor players in the field.

#8332 Thistle is another J.H. Dearle design. The monochrome
was printed as wallpaper. The date is a little obscure on this pattern
so I put 1910, when it appeared in a catalog.

You can see there is quite a color range to this line.

#8334 Willow
Willow is a Morris signature pattern, produced as wallpaper in 1874. 
They also printed it as fabric later. 

The company did several variations on the willow leaves. This monochrome has small bubbles floating behind the leaves (you sometimes see the leaves without the circles but we left them in as it adds more texture to a classic design.) 


Chrysanthemum, a classic by the master,
1877

Seven colorways here showing the range.

Customers will see it in the spring.
Shop owners this week at Quilt Market.