Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Emporia Quilts: Charlotte Jane Whitehill's Tomato Flower

Tomato Flower by Charlotte Jane Whitehill, Emporia, Kansas
hand quilter unknown, 
1932, 84" x 86"
Denver Art Museum Neusteter Textile Collection, 
Gift of Charlotte Jane Whitehill, 1955.66

If it's mid-June our new book Emporia Rose should be in your quilt shops (Well, we can hope.) Any day now.....

Karla Menaugh and I have been thinking about the Emporia quilts for years. I first discovered the Emporia quiltmaking community in 1985 when the Kansas Quilt Project traveled around the state documenting quilts and we found that many of the most dynamic mid-twentieth-century quilts had some link to the town. 

Charlotte Jane Whitehill (1866-1964) about 1950, 
with her version of the Paradise Garden (quilt's current location unknown.)

Charlotte Whitehill was one of the leaders in that small-scale revival of traditional quilts. Most of her quilts are in the collection of the Denver Art Museum.

Tomato Flower by Charlotte Jane Whitehill, detail

We chose one of our favorites, her Tomato Flower, as inspiration for a block in our Emporia Rose sampler.

Tomato Flower by Ina Mae Carney for an Emporia Rose sampler

We simplified the design and shortened Lottie Whitehill's stems a bit so the block would fit into our sampler format

The Tomato Flower is at top left in my version of our
Emporia Rose sampler.

See the Emporia Rose book cover over on the left and click on it or click here:

 To see more at the C&T website:

Read a review at Publisher's Weekly


  1. Thankfully there were ladies like the ones from Emporia that helped keep the American Quilting heritage alive and well.


  2. Can't wait to see the entire book! These quilts are stunning....loved when we talked about them in class.