Monday, January 9, 2012

Princess or Prince's Feathers, Whatever

These bold blocks are always intriguing.

There are so many variations.

It's wonderful to see so much individuality within a set of visual rules.

The rules are pretty simple: The arms have to rotate around a center.

There's a lot of variation possible in the center

 Each of the arms goes the same way, no flipping the pattern over.
In the example above the arms in the corners flip.

See why you can't flip the arms in a quilt from the McCord Museum by clicking here:

There can be eight arms rotating.
(See more about this quilt and the pattern at Karen Alexander's post

Minor rules: Serated edges on the arms or not

Six arms rotating.
Another rule: You can add stuff to the arms.


Four arms with a star hanging off.

But one arm is too few.
Do you get the feeling someone inherited some pieces here without a clear view of the overall blueprint for the project?

See one on the Quilt Index that illustrates why the basic rule is rotate---no flipping.


  1. Princess feathers are always so dramatic...love them!

  2. Princess Feather quilt is on my "want to make" list!

  3. It is amazing how beautiful the stitching is on the older quilts like this, I cannot do points and sharp curves very well.


  4. Thanks for the lovely feather quilt photos, and the link to Karen Alexander's (no relation) blog! I am still considering making a coxcomb quilt and all these leaves 9or feathers) remind me of that!
    Lalexander733 (at) gmail (dot) com

  5. I have inherited a quilt from my Dad's great grandmother that was an original design and won 1st place at the Chicago World's Fair in 1893. It is my prized possession.

    It is very simple. All white with a red crown of feathers and the repeating pattern of the crown in the stitching. She called it the Prince's Feathers. It looks very much like these, except more delicate and with red piping around the edges. It would remind you of a Hawaiian quilt.

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