Monday, March 7, 2011

New York Celebrates Red and White!

Networking through blogs is the name of the communication game today. I'm still not interested in Twitter. But who knows.

Recently Beth Donaldson at QuiltDoctor blogged about Taryn at Repro Quilt Lover. To celebrate the Red and White Quilt Exhibit in New York City hosted by the American Folk Art Museum, Taryn decided to offer a Red and White Challenge of her own.

Check out Taryn's Challenge here.

If you have a Red and White quilt in your collection, enter a photo in the challenge! I have entered the Challenge by sending a photo of the Red and White Star quilt below in my collection to Taryn.

I have a confession to make. After I read Beth's post and went looking for this quilt, I was astounded when I opened it up. I had forgotten it had a large red star at the center!

All I seemed to remember about this quilt (once it went into storage) were the wonky corners!  Now that I see it fully open once again, I remember how I loved the fact that the maker didn't give a hoot about making those corners come out the same at each turn!! My kind of gal!

I have a very hard time taking head-on shots in this house without going to a lot of dragging a ladder into the house. I punted today and just hung it in my office for this shot. But the room is too narrow to get a full head-on.

As you can see, the red is quite worn in the center of this quilt.  This is one of my few quilts that I cannot find any record on. Given that almost all of the quilts in my collection that I purchased pre-2004 were found at estate sales in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia or in antique malls on one of my many trips with Hazel Carter across Ohio and Indiana, I can pretty safely assume this one came from one of those three states.

NEWS FLASH: Just since posting this last night, two folks have sent me links to quilts very similar to this quilt. Both are located in the U.K.!

Here is mine.

What do you think?

The four wonky corners!

Double click to enlarge.

Most of my other red and white quilts are redwork quilts and/or doll or crib quilts.

Here is a crib quilt dated 1918. This pattern was Ruby Short McKim's first quilt design produced in 1916.  You can read an article I have written about McKim here.

Redwork Quaddie Quiltie McKim Crib Quilt

The quilt from my collection whose blocks you see here bears only 9 of the 20 different patterns from this first McKim series. A fabric tag stitched to the back reads: Carol Burr Baby quilt made for Richard born 1918. Although the red sashing is badly worn in places, especially across the top border, I was thrilled to stumble upon such an early copy of Ruby's first series.

This first series was a joint copyright venture with well known author Thornton Burgess, who died in 1965 at the age of 91, wrote over 170 books and 15,000 stories throughout his life.  His characters, such as: Peter Rabbit, Joe Otter, Hooty the Owl, Jerry Muskrat, and Bobby Raccoon are famous worldwide. It was an auspicious beginning to Ruby's career to land this joint venture.

To see more Ruby McKim quilts visit Lynn Miller's blog here.

Red and White Applique Doll Quilt


The little animals above were cut out from another fabric and 
appliqued onto this little doll quilt.

Two-sided Redwork Doll Quilt


Below: reverse side of above doll quilt

Early Red & White 20th century Crib Quilt

This is actually rather like a duvet and has the initials at the top RMB for Rita M. Batka. Rita was a secretary and teacher who lived with her sister, and never married.The back is a small flannel plaid in blue and pink. Dont know where she was born but do know she was born in 1922. Some family still lived in Maryland at the time of her death. The known history includes a copy of her obituary and a copy of the estate sale ad giving some family history, and history of her life, which she lived mostly in Kansas. 


detail of above quilt - Jiggs  from "Bringing Up Father" 

Excerpt from history of "Bringing Up Father". Click here to see more history and to see sample comic strips.

"It wasn't until January 2, 1913 that the strip formally became known as 'Bringing Up Father.' And it wasn't until 1916 that the strip began appearing as a daily on a regular basis, with Sunday strips following on April 14, 1918.

Bringing Up Father told the story of Irish-American Jiggs, a former bricklayer, and his wife Maggie, an ex-laundress, who achieved sudden wealth, supposedly by means of a lucky ticket in the Irish Sweepstakes. While the snobbish Maggie and beautiful daughter Nora constantly try to "bring up" Father to his new social position, Jiggs can think of nothing finer than sitting down at Dinty Moore's restaurant to finish off several dishes of corned beef and cabbage, followed by a night out with the boys from the old neighborhood. The clash of wills that ensued often resulted in flying rolling-pins, smashed crockery, and broken vases, all aimed in the general direction of Jiggs's skull."

detail of above quilt

Red Work Doll Quilt


Red Applique Doll Quilt


Click here to see more Red and White quilts in my next post, including some Ulster quilts.

Karen in the Islands

PS: Concerned about the current cotton market and the price of quilting fabrics?  
So is the market place. Check it out here.


  1. Wow, That's some very interesting Red and White quilts of your own. A one wowmen exhibition!

    I like the your first one- She sounds like my kind of girl too.
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. Hi Karen, I have just posted a similar star quilt on my blog and I have seen this pattern on another Welsh quilt. The one I feature has Welsh quilting patterns which seems to indicate its national identity. I can't make out the quilting on your quilt. Would be interested to know?

  3. Thanks for showing us your wonderful red and white quilts. I know what you mean about the workout involved in dragging a quilt out for a photo session. I am thinking of doing my own workout tape. ;) Lucky you to get to go quilt hunting with Hazel before the Valley became so picked over. I just met her in person (finally) this past weekend. I went to the "Dating Club" for the first time.

  4. Thanks for sharing your quilts...what great finds!

  5. That first quilt is spectacular! I`d bet it would take a long time to notice the wonky corners because of the wonderful design. I love it!