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Antique Quilt
Antique Quilt  
Dear Julie, I recently purchased an antique quilt at while along the north-eastern coast. I know very little about quilts, but this one seemed interesting and is full of charm. It appears to be all hand-sewn with lots of detailed stitching on the cream-colored background material. The darker red pattern appears to be somewhat of a thin corduroy-type material. (?) There are 30 total identical patterns on the quilt. It has a thin cotton filler between the layers, and has a very thin, sheer linen material on each end. A thin red border frames the entire quilt. It does have some staining, but I'm afraid to clean it due to its age. The fabric appears very old, but has held together nicely, overall. Can you please advise me of the time period, pattern, and estimated value. Thank you!

Hi Kim,

Thanks for contacting me on this.

It's a little hard to tell much about the quilt from the one
small photo -- though you did a very good job of using words
to describe it.

In the photo it looks very very soiled.  It looks oiled enough
to warrant washing - too much soil can accelerate deterioration.

Having said that -- it may well be too fragile to wash without
losing some of the fabric.

This is the kind of thing that would benefit from being seen in
person by an expert.   Where are you and the quilt?  I may be
able to recommend someone to look at it.

I'm not sure what the traditional name might be for it.  It's a
"garland" of sorts -- but unusually "open."  The appliqued rings
are not finished into a circle.  Unusual.

It is also unusual for it to have such fine, gauze-y fabric for
the borders.  That does not sound original to me.  If it was the
choice was the original quilt maker's that would be very rare.

I can not tell the age without seeing it -- sorry.

Value can be determined better with an in person viewing.  It will
not be very much, even if it cleans up.  I see that the red is
starting to wear through.  In this market, people are very reluc-
tant to buy quilts which have "started to go."

I hope this helps, at least a bit.


Julie Silber  


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Julie Silber


I can speak to the age, design, style, region, history, and value of antique quilts.


Forty years as an appraiser, dealer, historian, collector, consultant and museum curator in the area of QUILTS MADE BEFORE 1950.

American Quilt Study Group (former Board Member); Alliance for the American Quilt (Former Board Member)

Author or co-author of several award winning books on Quilt History; numerous articles on quilt history published over a 30 year period. Details upon request.

B.A., American History, University of Michigan; Post Graduate courses in folklore, history and art history

Past/Present Clients
Esprit de Corp., San Francisco; Levi Strauss, San Francisco; Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn, MI; Oregon Historical Society, Portland, OR

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