The block-style layout, in which quilt blocks of the same size are arranged in a grid, is considered to be an iconically American quilt design but it is only relatively recently that this layout became prevalent in the United States. How did this layout develop and what other traditions influenced it? This series of three articles will explore early European patchwork traditions, colonial and early-Euro-American patchwork designs, and the period of transition from European influenced layouts and patterns to the block-style layout in the United States. This first article explores early British and Dutch patchwork, identifying shared characteristics that will later be found in colonial and early-American quilts.
Eighteenth Century British and Dutch Patchwork
by Janice E. Frisch
- By: Janice E. Frisch
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About the Designer
Janice E. Frisch, Ph.D., has been making and researching quilts for the past twenty years. She is the owner of the business Tangible Culture, through which she gives quilt history lectures, teaches quilting classes, and makes custom memory quilts. Her groundbreaking research on the American block-style quilt is published in the book American Quilts in the Industrial Age, 1760-1870, edited by Patricia Cox Crews and Carolyn Ducey. You can learn more about her work and her lectures on her website: www.TangibleCultureLLC.com.
Photo by Tall and Small Photography