Sunday, September 8, 2013

A Couple of Old Quilts

My husband was cleaning out an old storage locker that belongs to a family member and found a couple of old quilts that had probably been in there for over 20 years, just folded up on top of a piece of furniture, covered in dust and cobwebs. He brought them home and I laid them out on the grass in the backyard to take a closer look at them this afternoon. No one knows who made them or where they came from.

This scrappy 9 patch quilt is hand quilted with fans and the binding is just the backing turned over to the front of the quilt. One of the blocks was different from the rest. You can see the deep fold line down the middle of the quilt. It is stained in a couple of spots and was very dirty. It smelled very funky and later in the afternoon, it got washed in the washing machine, (twice!) and tumbled dry.

Here, you can see the brown stains as well as the fabrics used in the sashings and cornerstones.

Most of the blocks had matching fabrics, but this one didn't!

All the stripes go the same way, except for that one on the lower right.

Here is the block that is not like the others!

This block has a different fabric in the centre.

You can see how dirty this quilt was before washing it in this picture.
This quilt was in really good shape and all the seams and fabrics were intact so I decided it would be safe to wash it in my front load washing machine on gentle.
Here it is after washing and drying. The colours look brighter and wrinkles have disappeared! 
The smell is gone too.
The second quilt is not in quite as good shape as the first.
It is actually not even finished --the binding has not been put on yet.  Upon closer inspection, I noticed that there are machine stitching holes all around the outside of the quilt which makes me wonder if it was quilted, used, taken apart and a new backing put on. There are actually still some pins all around the outside of this quilt holding it together until the binding is put on. Those three red blocks really look out of place with all the other softer colours.  Were they a later addition or were all the other fabrics once as bright as them?
Does anyone know the name of this block?
Here, you can see the diagonal quilting.
I don't know a lot about old fabrics, but this one just does not look like the same vintage as the other fabrics in this quilt.
The cotton batting is looking a bit rough around the edges. You can see two of the pins in this picture.
I would like to bind this quilt and then wash it to remove the dirt and the smell. The fabrics all appear to be intact. The backing is white. Do you think I should just use white binding or should I find some sort of subtle stripe to use? 
If anyone has any thoughts on these quilts, please comment below.  Thanks for stopping by.

1 comment:

  1. what treasures! I would probably bind it in light blue stripe or plaid or shirting.