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I am a quilter living in Woodbridge, Suffolk who has made quilts since I was a teenager. I also ring bells! Both are great British traditions....I will try to feature some of my antique Welsh and Durham quilts, the quilts I make myself, my quilting activities and also some of my bellringing achievements. Plus as many photos as I can manage. NB: Double click on the photos to see greater detail, then use back button to return to the main page.

Friday, 30 October 2015

Stamped Sanderson Star Top

As you may know, I have a special interest in the north country quilt pattern known as the Sanderson Star. This pattern was an Allendale speciality, and was made famous by Elizabeth Sanderson. The top was available made up and already marked (stamped) be quilted at home or given to a local quilter to completed. According to FitzRandolph, it was especially popular with the star in dark colours. Red and white or blue and white were also popular colourways.

So I was very pleased to be able to buy this marked top! The blue pencil is a bit faded in places..and there are one or two faint water stains, but generally in good condition...the fabrics are a white cotton with a pink chambray, very similar to the marked sawtooth diamond top I already own...the outer border is an attractive scroll and swag border.

This quilt top was bought at an auction in Allendale some thirty years ago.

The plan trace the markings onto polythene...this has already been done, for the entire quilt. The quilt is roughly square at 98" a lot of work there. I have already purchased the fabric(red and white) and made templates by tracing the quilt pieces......I will make the replica quilt and transfer the markings onto the replica. I will not quilt the original, as I prefer to keep it as an artifact....this top has been expertly bodges like some of the quilts seen by me during my study....corners a rhombus not a square.....corners nicely set in by machine....and sturdy (unlike the other top where the tension was wrong and it looked rather poorly put together)!

The blue markings resemble the marked star top at the York Quilt Museum.....that top pieced by Mrs Coulthard and then marked by Mrs Hetherington of Wearhead, a pupil of Mrs Sanderson. It was traditional for a Sanderson Star quilt to be the final piece made during the apprenticeship of a quilter, so she would have been very familiar with this popular pattern.

This top is dated 1911-1914.


  1. I love the Sanderson Star quilt. It is going to be a lot of quilting but you will have a treasure when you are finished.

  2. I had family living and in Allendale way back, wished Id been bequeathed an original quilt or pattern!!
    Sounds like a great project

  3. What a beautiful find. Look forward to seeing your final version...what a great project. Nice to have said hello at the Seminar in Mcr. And thanks for the photos from the Whitworth as I didn't get to the study sessions.