Monday, 3 February 2014

Inspiration: Classic Quilts from The American Museum in Britain

This post was meant to be about my work in progress last Wednesday, but I have had a horrible week of migraines, so I don’t have any work in progress to share with you!  Here’s hoping this week is more productive.  Instead of my work, here is a book that makes up part of my vast collection, ‘Classic Quilts from The American Museum in Britain’.

If you have never visited the American Museum near Bath, it should definitely be on your ‘go-to’ list.  It has a beautiful, peaceful setting looking out over a valley of green fields, lots of folk art and American history.  Last time I was there, which was admittedly 1996(!), there was a Civil War re-enactment, which echoed loudly across the valley and a special exhibition of Candace Bahouth’s work. There seems to a different special exhibition each year and I have fancied visiting many of them, but since moving north of the border again, Bath isn’t really the most practical place to go.
So this book brings back many happy memories of visits to Bath pre-children.  But there is more to it than that.  Written by two of the curators of the museum, Laura Beresford and Katherine Hebert, it gives a short, but fascinating, history of the museum and of its amazing quilt collection.  The rest of the book is devoted to individual quilts, each with a full page, full photograph, accompanied by some beautiful detailed shots and a short history of the quilt and the block/technique used.  It covers many of the best known American styles, such as Log Cabin, Baltimore, Amish, Hawaiian, Double Wedding Ring, etc. 

I liked this hexagon quilt, especially how it points out how the pattern can be seen in more than one way –which way did you see first?
This Trip Around the World Quilt was also amazing.  It is on-point, each square is one inch square and is individually quilted.  Wow!  Its maker is unknown, but it was presented to Eleanor Roosevelt, the wife of the 32nd President, who created a role for herself in promoting traditional skills as a way through the Depression.  It was also used by the Roosevelt family, which I think is nice, rather than just sitting in a cupboard or being in a museum all its life.

The book is relatively speaking rather old now, published in 2009 and I purchased it from PostScript Books, which can sometimes have amazing textile books and museum catalogues on offer – well worth checking out now and then.

And now, whilst I am migraine free, I’m going to get on with some stitching.
Classic Quilts from The American Museum in Britain
ISBN: 978-1-85759-598-7
Scala 2009

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular Posts