From a Christie's Auction
All the comments have inspired me to do another post on the free-form/unconfined applique style to mention three points.
Hexagon center with a border of Portuguese stripe chintz
and outer borders of free-form applique.
[The Portuguese stripe alternates floral
containers and exotic birds---popular chintz
in the 1825-1850 period.]
From an online auction
Herringbone stitch explained here:
Americans used herringbone stitch in their crazy quilts after 1880---but that is a different style.
Herringbone stitch barely visible in the photo
British quilt from the Poos Collection
with a free form center
Many of the applique quilts with good detail photos seem to be
stitched down with conventional applique stitches, however.
So the stitch doesn't define the style; it's linked to it.
Looks like a regular hidden applique stitch on this tile quilt
from Jane Lury & David Hupert.
Another associated style characteristic is rather random shapes
of chintz ---cabbage left over from other projects?
Bedcovering from India. I don't know date or source
but the style is familiar (and quite appealing.)
2) The unconfined appliqued style seems to me to come directly from Indian applique style.
Indian applique, circa 1930---similar work being done today
From India through many European threads of needlework tradition
British bedcover from Kerry Taylor Auctioneers
1852 signed Lucy Hasell (?)
Wish I knew the source of this one.
Ann Robinson's quilt in the Shelburne Museum
It's all a good excuse to post more pictures, which may inspire some people to take on just one more new project. It looks like the prep time for the applique is minimal, Wendy. You cut out the shape; you toss it onto some background. You stitch it down. I may take it up myself.
And as I write this I realize I have---but I have been turning the edges under. More tomorrow.
Here's one that Julie Silber showed---she's the one
who started the whole discussion.
The border looks to be rather free-form
Dated 1874, for John Adkins, Maryland quilt in the DAR Museum.
1844, Durham, center of a patchwork field
From the collection of the British Quilters Guild
Similar center from one in Woodard & Greenstein's inventory.
More tomorrow on this one.
Documented in the South Africa project
From the Quilt Index
See many details of this one at the Copake Auction site. Sold in America. The applique IS confined to blocks of sorts, so it may be a British-American hybrid.