New Orleans House Project

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Pieces of the Past: Midwest churn dash

I do not have a large collection of antique quilts, but I enjoy looking at old quilts and learning about them.  I think I was drawn to quilting as much by a love of fabric as by the history of textiles and quilt-making.  My library is full of quilt history books: state documentation projects, doll quilts, Depression-era quilts, Civil War era quilts, etc.

This quilt was purchased from an antique dealer in suburban New Orleans about 10 years ago.  The dealer said it came from an estate sale in Illinois.  The quilt is in very nice condition and doesn't appear to have received heavy use.  There are no dates or inscriptions on the quilt.

There are several common names for the quilt block pattern:  hole in the barn door, monkey wrench and churn dash.  Whatever you wish to call it, it's a classic Nine-Patch block.

The blocks themselves use a number of different fabric prints and colors, but the overall appearance is more coordinated than randomly scrappy.

I love how the quilter got inventive in using what fabric was on hand!  The fabrics in the quilt are typical of fabrics from about 1890 through 1915, but if the quilt was made from scraps, who knows when the quilt was actually constructed!

Hand-quilted using a fan pattern; single fold bias binding.  The size is about 64" by 70".

Backing fabric is a solid piece of light brown and cream shirting-type stripe.