Friday, July 13, 2018

Botanizing #1: Quilts & the Natural World

Cotton Boll or Anthemion, classical imagery in quilt design
See a post about Anthemia here

Mid-19th century applique artists were inspired by many aspects of fine arts, folk arts and popular culture.

From the Connecticut project & the Quilt Index

 Laurel Wreath, a classical image signifying honor
and glory....

Self-appointed or not.

Typical floral image in Germanic colors, motifs and arrangement.

 Pennsylvania German candle box dated 1792

Painted detail from a Pennsylvania chest about the same time
from the Barnes Collection

From a Baltimore album quilt, Woodard & Greenstein photo

Newspaper masthead from Baltimore in 1846

Detail of a quilt in the Sharon Newman collection at
the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum

Some patterns became standards.

From the Kentucky project & the Quilt Index

While others seem one-of-a-kind, perhaps drawn from nature.

For the next few days we'll look at the influence of botanizing, a 19th-century
word for collecting and classifying plants, a popular women's hobby.


  1. Oh this will be fun. Wild flowers especially draw me in.
    We lived in Texas for a while, around Austin and I loved the
    wild flowers in abundance in the spring.
    The Lady Bird Johnson Wild Flower Center is in Austin and
    July 28 is a free admission day.
    See how excited I get?

  2. You'll like this series, Janie. May inspire you.

  3. Barbara...thank you for imparting all this glorious information. Much appreciated. Blessings.

  4. I collect photos of quilts featuring eagles. Many of them come right from your posts, so thanks!!!

    I'd like to design a patriotic eagle quilt with elements from many that I see. They are so wonderful! Even the eagles with irons clutched in their talons from a couple of weeks ago!

  5. Over the past few years, I have been sketching out ideas for a future floral quilt, so am looking forward to the coming posts.

  6. I am so glad to see you use the term "Pennsylvania German". For decades I have tried to explain that the word "deutsch" mangled as "dutch" by English speakers in both South Africa and Northern America refers to Germany not Holland.