Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Mingei Museum finale

Let's complete our tour of the Mingei International Museum in San Diego, shall we?  We've seen the red and white quilts on the first floor, and some of the quilts from around the United States.  Here are the rest....

Signature Quilt  Top-  Ethel Shepard
1934, Macon, Georgia
This red and white quilt is truly a Signature quilt top to me!  255 names written in ink and hand embroidered in a running stitch.  Quilts like this always make me ask the question, "How were these people connected?"  This quilt surely has a story to tell.  Names of people and towns, not all in Georgia.  A few, sadly, have a date of death also recorded.

I looked up a few names on Ancestry.  Some could not be found easily, but of the couple that I could quickly identify, they seem to have been born about the same year, 1911-1912.  Doing a little math, and noting that a number of the women have both maiden name and a married name on their block, I wonder if this was made for a 5-year High School Reunion.

I hope the Mingei Museum has had the staff and time to find out the story of this quilt.  There wasn't room for elaboration in their display, but there is so much information on this quilt.  Such a treasure that Ethel Shepard has made!

String Quilt Top - String Triangles
Early 20th century, Kentucky
Oh, this one looks fun!  String pieced triangles set alternately with a single double-pink from Kentucky. This is also unquilted.

Wall Hanging - Frances Osceola
The next quilt is a wall hanging from Florida.  It features a distinctive regional style of quilting known as Seminole Quilting.  Modern quilting techniques were used in this 1990's piece.

This sampler shows (from top to bottom) Rain, Man-on-Horseback, Broken Arrow, Bones, Sacred Cross, Fire and Lightning.  This may have been made quilt-as-you-go because there are no visible quilting stitches on the wall hanging front.  Perhaps this was paper pieced, to get such crisp edges.

Here's a wonderful basket quilt from Missouri.  What an unusual setting!  Can you see the center medallion of baskets is off-center by one row?  I think the colors in this are delicious, and I've long had a soft spot for basket quilts.   There is beautiful quilting too.  Feathers around each basket handle, and closely spaced parallel lines between.
Quilt - 1840's, Philadelphia, Missouri
Signature Quilt - Elizabeth Dorks Nettles (1865-1944)
1891 - Illinois
Oh my!  Look at the teensy, tiny triangle pieces in this Tree of Life quilt from Illinois!  We're talking small here.  And really detailed quilted feather wreaths in the alternate blocks.  This may look scrappy, but I think it was really very well planned.  Only four fabrics (tan, pink, yellow, dark green with white pinstripe) and muslin.  Each tree appears to have the same color placement of triangles.

Our next quilt is an Amish Quilt from Kalona, Iowa, were there is a Quilt & Textile Museum located in the Kalona Historical Village Welcome Center. That may be an interesting place to visit someday!

Don't you love the polka-dot look that appears in this 'bow tie variation?'

Amish Bow Tie Variation Quilt
1920's, Kalona, Iowa
Here is another Amish quilt - a crib quilt from Kansas.  It is quilted with a cable and leaf design.  It has a real optical illusion kind of look to me.
Amish Crib Quilt c. 1935, Hutchison, Kansas

Let's head to Indiana and a Fan Quilt made from various fabrics, including twill and velveteen.  Don't you love how the black background makes the fan colors Pop?  And it's an interesting setting too, alternating directions rather than having all the fans face the same way.  Love the motion it gives.  Herringbone embroidery using all the same color along the tops and bottoms arcs of the fans gives a unifying element.
Fans Quilt c. 1940, LaGrange County, Indiana
Indiana State Museum collection
Finally, we come to our last quilt.  And it's stunning!  From Hawaii comes a Pineapple Quilt.  This amazing regional style of applique quilt, using only one color and white background, never fails to be a show-stopper.  There's a bit of glare on this one, as it was one protected behind a glass case.

  The art of Quilting was brought to the Hawaiian Islands with missionary women in the 1820's.  The distinctive style that developed focused on the applique of local flowers and plants in a kaleidoscope of pattern.

Pineapple Quilt  20th Century Hawaii
What an enjoyable tour of American Quilting this has been.  Quilts aren't just pieced blocks sewn together.  I had forgotten how many distinctive styles of quilting have developed, each a complement to the other, and each a unique work of art.  

Thanks for joining me at the Mingei Museum on our trip to San Diego, CA.

Until next time - hope you have a chance to Quilt Awhile.

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