Crazy quilt

Eleanor stitched this eclectic quilt on a horse farm in Tennessee for her cousin in 1871 – read the inscription on the back. An embroidered black horse anchors the design, while farm animals, flowers, fish and a butterfly are dotted about. Aside from providing warmth, parents might use it to tell stories to children at bedtime.


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Did making crazy quilts allow for more individual expression than other types of quilts – how and why?

responded: Jul 6, 2012

Posted by Charlotte H

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Quilting becme popular in the late 18th and early 19th century. Even though their purposewas to keep families warm, quilts have always had an expressive and decorate theme to them. One can eaily spot a crazy quilt by its scattered and eccentric appearence which resembles a cracked ceramic. Unlike common household quilts, these quilts were expensive and luxurious. Similar to a painting or sculpture, crazy quilts are also masterpeices of art work that evoke expression, emotion and adorning creativity. Therefore their purpose was to be hung up like art work rather than a source of heat. This is further emphasized by the fact that they are made from numerous expensive fabrics that would not be able to withstand being continously washed like a regular quilt. These materials would a have been a range of silks, velvets, lace, linen and fine wools. Quilters, like artists, mixed fabrics as if they were mixing paints together in order to express a more elaborate texture. Unlike regualr quilts, these would have stories or events sewn onto them to tell a story, which would further allow for individual expression and interpretaion. Images such as flowers and birds were popular, in addition to a spider web which is a symbol of good fortune. With the growth of this new asymmetrical art form, women could go out and purchase packets of mixed fabrics and pieces of fabris that had alredy had some embriodery on them. (Photos; www.loopylace.com & www.myquiltplace.com)

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