The Art & Elegance of Beadweaving by Carol Wilcox Wells
By Carol Wilcox Wells
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Extra resources for The Art & Elegance of Beadweaving
Someone once said that every story has an element of truth—it’s just up to us to figure out how much. AMERICA’S OLDEST DATED CRAZY QUILT? Quilts done in the uneven patchwork characterized as Crazy appear early in the nineteenth century, long before the Crazy reached its heyday between 1875 and 1900. Most of these quilts are undated; their age is established by the materials used to make them, as well as their size, construction, and quilting styles. ) One piece, however, has a provenance that describes its creation.
Such detail took more time, though no more fabric, to make, and a quilter could while away more months on just one piece. ) These elaborate quilts not only preserved women’s sanity during the long uncertain days, but were sold during sanitary fairs and other fundraisers, as well. “Eager to do something for the cause, [women] had little to offer but their sons’ and husbands’ lives, their daughters’ dowries, and their own domestic skills,” says Barbara Brackman in Quilts From the Civil War. ” The End of the Civil War Brought New Influences and Materials The end of the Civil War marked the beginning in a new era for America.
Strip Quilt with Nine Patch and Crazy elements | Date: ca. 1840 | Maker: Unknown | Size: 993/4” x 971/2” Vertical sections of Crazy piecing alternate with Nine Patch blocks and printed strips in this very early Strippie-style quilt, pieced of cottons and linens. Very little is known about it, but its size, fabrics, and techniques suggest it was made about the same time as the Maryland Kaleidoscope. (Collection of Robert and Ardis James. ) Probably the best-known Crazy from this time period is one in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s collection.