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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.

Tuesday 17 December 2013

Muriel Rose - A Modern Crafts Legacy

When I was last in York in October, I had a browse in the Quilters Guild Library. One item that I discovered was a small booklet about Muriel Rose. I thought that it would be an easy matter to find a copy of this booklet - but found, on ringing the Crafts Study Centre, that all stocks had been sold and that it was now out of print.

So I was very pleased to find that this collection of essays is available on-line at:

Muriel Rose was director of The Little Gallery, where she selected what she considered the best of contemporary craft for sale. The Little Gallery "made an active and forceful contribution to the way that craft work was distributed and debated in the modern world".

The Little Gallery was at 5 Ellis Street, off Sloane Street in London. It opened in 1928 and closed in 1939.
We quilters know her best for her work with Mavis FitzRandolph to commission high quality quilts in Durham and Wales, via the Rural Industries Board, which were then sold in London.

I found this a very interesting collection to read, and will be keeping a copy for my research - maybe one day I will find an actual booklet...

Tuesday 10 December 2013

Small Red Welsh Quilt

Here is another Welsh quilt that I purchased last month. It is a small quilt, not even a single size. It looks as if it is a large crib quilt. The size is 39 x 51 inches or 99cm x 125cm.

The designs are simple, to fit into the smaller area. However, the quilting is of a good standard and the leaf patterns are very attractive. The double and triple lines really make the motifs stand out well.

You can see that there is a central motif of leaves - a cross hatched area and a border of leaves complete the design.

The backing is of a tan colour. The wadding seems to be lambs wool.

The edges are neatly finished off by hand. Some of the quilting lines have "popped" and are gone...but still in relatively good condition. This type of quilting does epitomize Welsh quilting for me...

Wednesday 4 December 2013

Egyptian Work - Two Panels

Here are two small panels of Egyptian tent work that I bought recently. Like many attending the Festival of Quilts, I was fascinated to see the tentmakers of Cairo at work and admired the larger textiles that they produced. These small items are likely to have been brought back as a small souvenir by a tourist to Egypt. The background is a heavy canvas. They are panels, and have not been made up into cushions. They are a bit faded, so perhaps they were simply displayed in a house....

Obvious Egyptian references here, with a mule driver and his animal, with two pyramids in the background. Some pencil marks are visible as a rough guide for the maker. The blue pack on the back of the mule has come unstitched.

The other block has an active scene of a chariot driver with his horse. The colours may be a bit faded with this panel....but very appealing colours......The backing fabric is coarse and the stitching professional, in that the stitching is not fine, but holds everything in place in an economical fashion.

I enjoy these panels, and they will go well with the South American molas that I already have....