Close-up quilting

From the top of the stack of quilts in The Cupboard comes a satin crib quilt, unused, wool batting, guesstimated date 1930s.  I use this piece as a hands-on class sample to point up some of the differences between wool and cotton battings, simple patterns and non-turning corners – it started me off on a happy half hour taking close-ups of one or two other quilts and then onto close-ups of some of my own stitching.   I encounter the stitch size obsession so often in classes that, just for interest, I included a small ruler as a reference in many of the shots.  There’s no point to prove, no pictures of  entire quilts, just to observe that the size and quality of anyone’s stitch is dependent on so many variables – the top fabric, the batting, the backing fabric, the needle, the thread, the experience, the age, the quilting culture.   And I can’t be the only one who enjoys just looking at quilted texture up close and personal – can I?

diamond filler detail

feather detail

quilting detail

quilting detail

corner detail

The next quilting detail is provided by a quilt made around 1910-ish, probably North East, cotton top and back, dense and compacted cotton batting.

swag lines detail

swag quilting detail

infill fern detail

circled rose corner motif

centre detail

Just from the above I think you might agree that, if you want to make a major impact with your quilting, choose shiny fabrics!  It certainly makes an impression and adds some wow factor.  For good measure, here’s a close-up look at the quilting on the red and white strippy I showed you recently.  Heavy fabrics front and back, thick cotton batting, most definitely not easy to stitch through this quilt sandwich –

quilting detail

And jumping forward to the present day, see how easy we can make things for our quilting with much lighter weight fabrics, much thinner battings ….

feather detail

I can almost feel a whole series of posts coming on –  let me know if you can stand the thought of more close-ups.  After all, there is an entire Cupboard to deal with –

The Cupboard - detail

11 thoughts on “Close-up quilting”

  1. Yes, I can stand more close ups. Interesting to see how the modern fabrics produce a similar effect to the satiny ones although would thy become more like the cotton ones when was he. Why wasn’t the cot quilt used, any idea? Very sad if it was because it wasn’t needed

  2. Wonderful examples and very entertaining so bring on more. Great to see a shot of the famous cupboard.

    Maggi commented about the cot quilt not being used and I wondered if this could have been because of the fact that a lot of quilts that are received as gifts are tucked away in a cupboard because they are too good to use. It is the reason I am now very selective about who I gift quilts to. Take care

  3. This a great post, I love looking at how quilting stitches can vary from quilt to quilt so it would be wonderful to have some more posts on this. I’m trying different waddings at the moment, looking for the easiest to quilt through by hand. Wool was suggested to me, which was lovely. Would you recommend trying anything in particular?
    Thanks again for the post and great photos.

  4. Definitely love the close ups, and I think the same as Maggi, shame if the reason the cot quilt not used was….lets not go there. Super close up shots. Many thanks, Although I don’t hand quilt anymore I can appreciate the beauty of the hand done work. Oh yes, I want want want your cupboard….

  5. Would be very happy to burrow around in that cupboard – yes please! Love the close-ups and all the information you can give is much appreciated. It is amazing the different “look” between all those quilts. I guess washing and a life-much-lived could alter the look a lot too.

  6. Magnificent quilting stitches, so tiny, so evenly. Thank you for sharing! it is always a joy to read the posts.

  7. I can look on these wonderful pictures again and again and I will never get tired to enjoy them. This is what I love in hand quilting: all the structures, ornaments and tiny little stitches! Thank you for posting, Barbara. I will come back later and look again.

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