George III reviewing the troops (detail)
Unknown maker, 1803–1805
In front of this quilt top, I could have stood *all* day ... sadly they had placed it at a dead end so I did not want to be a hog ... there were many others who wanted to enjoy it's beauty. Of course there was this quilt, this quilt top, another top and this bed "hanging" among many others that I could have poured over for hours. In the words of another blogger ... Jean, The Sneaky Magpie and many others were invited to a preview - the rest of us weren't allowed to take photos" so be sure and check out their blogs too.
The Victoria & Albert Museum describes the quilt top:
"Unlined patchwork coverlet made from a wide variety of plain and printed cottons. At the centre is a circular, figurative panel that has been pieced and embroidered, showing the review of volunteer troops in Hyde Park by King George III. The image is inspired by a print by John Singleton Copley of 1799. The ground is white cotton with a repeating pieced design of segmented circles in printed cottons. Each circle has a variety of different patterns within it, including stars, squares, crosses, diamonds and flowers. The printed cottons include coral-like shapes, dots, florals, hearts and anchors. Many are block-printed cottons from the late eighteenth century, and some were originally glazed. The central panel may have been inserted after the completion of this patchwork, as it cuts through two pieced representations of the sun and the moon. It suggests that the two may once have been separate patchwork projects, although they may have been worked by the same hand as both the stitching and textiles are consistent. The border comprises 40 pieced vignettes, alternately circular and oval in shape, showing patriotic, domestic and naval scenes taken from contemporary prints and paintings. The number of patches per scene ranges from around 23 to 45. Additional embroidery has been added to the central panel and border, worked with silk threads in chain, satin and long and short stitches. There is also evidence of drawing, and some areas have been stamped with black ink, such as the small birds in the central medallion. The coverlet is unlined, and small fragments of the original paper template can be found in several areas."
Would you like to know more:
- The curator's thoughts on the King George Coverlet are an interesting read.
- Susan Briscoe's discusses the possibility that this quilt top was a group project.
- Janet Barnsley's has posted more photos on her blog A Quilter's Journal.
I've been obsessing about the King George top since July and am dying to make a small wallhanging of the blocks (for our living room?). At first glance you would think there were 100s of different blocks - but it turns out there are just 16 circular blocks which are repeated throughout the top. So I was planning on drafting them and having some fun on the side ... guess what? I don't have to. Marta did it for us!
So what prompted me to finally remember to tell you all about this quilt? The V&A is having a SALE! including the fabrics which were specially printed by Liberty's for the Quilts 1700-2010 Exhibition. Pin It Now!
Want to join us in the King George Sew Along (SAL)? Yes, her posts are in Spanish but Google translate does an "OK" job ... and the pattern downloads are in English. If you're as keen as I am, grab this button and join the fun! Now, what colors .... Oh, yes, you should check out Samsy too, she has also drafted and made a couple blocks too and I *really* like her colors.