Patchwork and Quilting

Patchwork and Quilting

A log cabin quilt refers to a patchwork quilt made of blocks made up of narrow strips of fabrics (logs) formed around a central square. Blocks of the log cabin quilts often consist of light and dark coloured strips, repeated throughout the quilt. Materials could vary according to the quilter’s economic status, from silk and velvet to wool and cotton.

Marseille quilt is a form of cloth with machine printed patterns resembling hand-stitched quilting.

A medallion quilt is a type of quilt popular in America and elsewhere. It has a central panel (of appliqué or patchwork) as the focal point, surrounded by two or more borders.

Military or soldiers’ quilts are a form of nineteenth century patchwork quilts made by British soldiers from the wool serge or woven worsted and twill cloth used to make military uniforms. Apparently in the Great Exhibition of 1851, over thirty examples of quilts were submitted by military personnel. Soldiers were encouraged to take up sewing as an alternative to drinking and gambling.

Pine burr is a three-dimensional quilt style, also known as pine cone, in which overlapping triangular swatches are placed in a circular pattern, starting from the centre. This style was very popular with African-American quilt makers in the southern USA throughout the twentieth century.

A rail fence is a striped pattern used for making quilt tops. A rail fence block is made up of three strips in different colours joined together to make a square of about 10 x 10 cm. The blocks are sewn together with the differently coloured stripes of the blocks in alternating vertical and horizontal directions. The blocks are then joined together to create the entire quilt top. The result is a form of patchwork quilt.

The term relief quilting is used in the USA for quilts that are made either for sale to raise money for a charity, or to be distributed directly to people in need. Both the Mennonite and Lutheran Churches in the USA, for example, have programmes whereby quilters throughout the country regularly gather (normally monthly) to make quilts.

A star pattern is a decorative design of diamond and triangular shaped pieces of coloured fabric sewn together for a quilt. The pattern may be a large, single star with radiating diamonds or triangles, or multiple stars joined together.

The pattern of a star quilt is composed of radiating diamonds and triangles in different colours. It has assumed special significance in several North American Indian nations. The design is especially associated with Plains Indians.

Story quilt is a term used to describe a quilt, usually with appliqué details, which provides pictorial images that portray some episode of the quilter’s individual or family history. This type of quilt is usually associated with other types of African-American quilts.

Straight furrow is an American quilting term for a quilt design made up of stripes of light and dark cloth. Straight furrow is very similar to the design of the more well-known log cabin quilt.

'Trip round the World' is the nme used for arranging the blocks of patchwork or quilting in such a way that the colours radiate from the centre. The pattern is particularly popular with Amish quilts. It is also known as 'Sunshine and Shadow'.

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