Friday, 24 October 2014

BQF: Love Entwined: 1790 Marriage Coverlet



Many thanks to Amy for so generously hosting the Bloggers Quilt Festival once again and a warm welcome to any linky hoppers who might be here for the first time. Welcome to my blog! Please consider leaving me a comment and come back again soon. 

This is the first vase from the centre of my applique quilt, 'Love Entwined: 1790 Marriage Coverlet'. It is an heirloom applique design and is a homage in remembrance to the original coverlet of no name, known simply as a 'fine marriage coverlet dated 1790' in Averil Colby's publication 'Patchwork' of 1958.

This is a heritage quilt; completely and intensely devoted to applique. There's a lot of mystery and intrigue concerning the original coverlet - the unknown maker used motifs and elements not seen in her era and this has raised a lot of mysterious and intriguing questions regarding her place in society, the origins of the quilt design and her intention (and application) in making it. From the moment I saw this quilt, I recognized it as an extraordinary Georgian masterpiece and knew that it had to be revived and remembered for it's unique place in history. 

In 2013 it was all but forgotten. But not for long. I set about creating a pattern in remembrance to it and the unknown woman who made it. Once I had the pattern created, I wanted to ensure that this quilt and its motifs would be revived and recognized today - so I released it for free as a BOM over a period of 18 months. This month, October 2014, marked the final installment. Did you miss it? Don't worry, all the parts are now available for free download. Yes, this quilt pattern is available to anyone who is interested in making it, for free

Why? Because I want to see this quilt and elements of its design revived and remembered. 

This quilt is so intense and fussy that I couldn't possibly show you all my favorite details in one post. Of course I'm biased, but I think every detail is wonderful! So I'll just focus on a few details of the first vase.
What I really love about this quilt, is that it is so intricate and busy. That's not usually my style. But I have found that as I spend hours working on certain motifs and pattern details, my mind starts to wander and wonder about the original maker. What was she thinking? How creative she must have been! Surely this quilt would have been the talk of society in her circle! For its true, we know so little, but what we do know (or can at least be confident) that she must have been of a certain class and society in Georgian England to have access to this hobby, its design process or purchase, its mathematical elements and the fabrics used. It's such an intrigue!

And once you start devoting hours to this quilt, well, you just can't stop.

This quilt really has a personality all its own. And every block is so intricate, you can really dress it up with all your skills and interests. There's plenty of room for fussy cutting, embroidery, embellishment and broderie perse. I'm sure a few charms here and there wouldn't go amiss either.

Then, when you've selected an area to work on, you have the pleasure of reinventing it to suit yourself. Take this vase for instance - I fussy cut it from a wonderful fabric
And yet, that still wasn't enough - it wanted more attention. So I spent several days embroidering very simply around the main design lines for that something extra
and as you can see, it transformed my work from beautiful to heirloom. But what I really love is that when I make this quilt, I am a part of history, taking part in it and contributing to it. I wonder what our unknown maker, in 1790 would think if she could see me now... I can't even imagine!

What I do know is that this quilt really shines when you pay attention to it, the more the better, And I can see it being worked for hours, weeks, months and probably years - one hour at a time in the drawing rooms of fine estates in Georgian England. I really wonder how many fine homes the original 'visited' as it was being made. You can probably tell, this quilt is dear to my heart and I love sharing it with others.
Love Entwined:1790 Marriage Coverlet is a work of art, a piece of history and an epic applique masterpiece! I am hand sewing the whole quilt and using turn edge applique as my method alongside wash away fusible. Of course, it lends itself to raw edge applique too and from Averil Colby's description, there certainly is raw edge on the original.
 Thank you for visiting my blog today and for viewing my post on this very special quilt. 

18 comments:

  1. This is beautiful beyond words.

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  2. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful, intense, hardworking quilt. A true artist.

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  3. just love it and thank you so much for sharing your design you have put so much love and work into this

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  4. I know, I've posted early, I'm ahead of US time so I'm waiting for the festival to 'open'

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  5. That's just far to beautiful for words!
    Well done simply stunning
    Frankiehttp://www.knitwits-owls.blogspot.co.uk/?m=1

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  6. I love this quilt...I've enjoyed seeing you and others as they worked on it over time and continue to do so :) It's above ( far above ) my skill level but it is projects that inspire people like me to keep practicing and doing so that at some point in time we will be good enough to do one just like this! :) Thank you to you and all the masterpiece-creators that inspire ! :)

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  7. This is gorgeous. Thank you so much for sharing it!

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  8. You have my vote. It is so gorgeous. I have enjoyed watching the process. Thanks, Esther!

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  9. I'm in love with your beautiful LE quilt Esther! Thank you so much for sharing with everyone.

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  10. When I see what you are doing it inspires me to get back to my LE. I love all of the little details you are adding! Thanks so much for designing and sharing a terrific pattern and you have my vote for sure!

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  11. Very special indeed. A truly work of art!

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  12. It is absolutely gorgeous:)))

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  13. So beautiful. Love to see your beautiful hand work.:)

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  14. A wonderful work of art and I love that you are highlighting and honoring a piece of quilt history. Bravo!

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  15. My goodness, Esther! What a thrill it is for me to watch you bring to life the very quilt that stopped the hearts of quilters worldwide! Because of your unique vision and talent, untold hours dedicated to drafting the pattern and your extraordinary generosity in making it available, we are all enriched and so very grateful. Wishing you a heart full of joy and satisfaction in every little stitch!

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