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Friday, July 23, 2010

Winterthur quilts in Milwaukee

The day began cloudy and rainy, and the forecast was for hot and muggy, so DH and I  went to the Milwaukee Art Museum today to see "American Quilts: Selections from the Winterthur Collection."

The quilts were beautiful, of course, and varied. There were elegant wholecloth pieces with stitching smaller than what a sewing machine produces. Other wholecloth pieces with elaborate toiles, but just fabric pieced together (technically very utilitarian).
My favorite was this paper-pieced medallion quilt.  It was made in Pennsylvania between 1825 and 1846.

The gift shop had several beautiful OBWs (one-block wonder) by a Milwaukee-area quiltmaker (about $1200 each). There were also throw-sized mass-market quilts from India: cheap fabric, toe-catcher stitches. The OBWs were a compliment/complement to the exhibit. The Indian ones were good as a contrast to what good quilts can be! I bought a magnet of the medallion quilt, and some postcards, and a scrap quilt book (the gift shop had current quilt books for sale, all at $10.00). I'll order the exhibit catalog through the library.

We had lunch at a microbrewery in the Third Ward (http://www.historicthirdward.org/).
On the way home DH observed that it takes less time to get to downtown Milwaukee than to downtown Chicago. (Same distance from our house, though.)  We ought to go more often!

1 comment:

  1. Nann, that sounds like a wonderful day! My friend just showed me the quilts online at Pottery Barn and one looks very much like the medallion. Take a look:

    http://www.potterybarn.com/products/afam-sunburst-quilt-sham/?pkey=cpatterned-quilts-shams

    Thanks for sharing the link to your blog on blockswappers!
    Katie

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