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The Yellow~Ribbons Project - Quilters who care

Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2002 21:54:23 -1000 From: Laurie Woodard <lwoodard@hawaii.edu> To: QHL-DIGEST <QHL@cuenet.com> Subject: 

For those with an interest in Hawaiiana including Hawaiian quilts, the exhibit catalog produced by the Honolulu Academy of Arts called Finding Paradise, Island Art in Private Collections, will be available for sale beginning November 22, 2002. For more information and images, visit their web site at http://www.honoluluacademy.org/shop/findingparadise/fp.lasso.

The exhibit itself was held in April-May of this year. They say the catalog has twice the number of objects as the exhibit. "Only 2,000 copies of the first printing will be available in Hawai'i." (The rest must be available through http://www.amazon.com where the price is currently $55.97).

Finding Paradise, Island Art in Private Collections. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2002 ISBN: 0824826574 396 pages 500+ color illustrations Hardcover, $79.95 Weighs a ton. -- Laurie Woodard Hawaiian Quilt Research Project http://openstudio.hawaii.edu/hqrp/default.html


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 10:20:20 -0000 From: "Sally Ward" <Sally.D.Ward@btinternet.com> To: <QHL@cuenet.com> Subject: ebay 

This item is being sold as old English, but although the colours are familiar to a particular area and time, the design is not. What would listmembers think this quilt was if it was on sale in the US? Is it a familiar design/colour scheme?


Sally W in UK  (click on the thumbnail below)

i-1_BL.jpg (100645 bytes)


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 07:44:12 -0500 From: "Judy Kelius (judysue)" <judysue@ptd.net> To: "Annette A." <nettie@mindspring.com>, 

My opinion is that the papers they used in the 19th century are of better quality than newsprint and held up well - I would not recommend taking them out or finishing a top of this age. I have had patches with papers containing dates in the 1820's, and they were in perfect condition. A 20's quilt is a different situation - the ones I have seen used typical newspapers or catalogues, paper that crumbled and in some cases stained the fabrics. These were often "string" quilt tops, of little value on today's market. If this is the case, I think it would increase the piece's value to remove the papers and quilt it. (You might wash it first by hand to remove the newsprint ink - I bet the water will be black.) What I would do is take one or two pieces of paper and either laminate them or attach them to the quilt's back with a note about the construction or photocopy them onto fabric and use them on a label with an explanation. Try to find pieces with a date, name of the paper, or particularly interesting headline that is indicative of the era. How do others feel about this?


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 08:38:52 -0500 From: "gb-best" <vitale@ptd.net> To: <QHL@cuenet.com> Subject: Amish quilt 

For those interested in the Amish quilt.

If you need details, send me an email.

Second appearance ~ sold as old.



Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 09:00:19 -0500 From: "gb-best" <vitale@ptd.net> 

I agree with Trish Herr. There is such an abundance of quilts in PA that  it isn't worth the time making repros. Also, the cost of making them  would be much more than buying an original old quilt.

There are estate sales everyday in this state and there is no shortage  of antique quilts. I am sure there will come a day when the quilts do  get bought up and only can be found in private collections, just like  what happened with the Amish quilts, but still there are many quilts to  be found.

The only repro trade I see are imports being sold as old. On many  occasions, I noticed import quilts being sold first as new and later as  old. They would choose the Amish quilts, I guess because of the solids,  they thought the buyers would be fooled. Many times they were and the  quilts would sell for unbelievable prices. This is a sad practice to  see, but does happen. I even saw a quilt that was still available to buy  at the QVC page. The seller was notified of this, but still sold the  quilt to a novice collector.

With an experienced eye, you can easily see the difference between an  import and a original antique. Also, when you buy on line, be sure you  look for sellers that take lots of close-ups and describe well. I would  stay away from those that say all sales final. Also, visit the QVC page  and know what the imports look like. This way you won't make a mistake.

I am happy to answer questions if you have any, send me an email.


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 09:20:07 -0600 From: "Barbara Vlack" <cptvdeo@inil.com> 

In our church, a funeral pall is a very large piece of fabric that is intended to completely cover the coffin and the wheeled carrier of the coffin (don't remember what that's called). It is intended to equalize everyone as they are brought into church for the funeral service. Fancy or plain coffin makes no difference or impression if it is covered with this pall.

I am wondering if the long rectangular coffin quilts mentioned here recently are the ones that are tucked around the body when it is presented in the coffin for the viewing.

Barb Vlack cptvdeo@inil.com


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 09:48:46 -0500 From: Laura Syler 

Judy, I totally agree with you. I have several tops pieced in the '19-teens to the 30's by my grandmother's family that are on newspaper backing that I've been photocopying and removing the paper. The papers are very yellowed and crumbling. On the other hand, I have had 3 tops, Mosaic, Baby's Blocks and 8 Pt stars, pieced on paper - old letters and ledgers with dates of 1830-1878 and the paper is not yellowed or brittle at all. One hexagon in the mosaic appeared to be the top of a letter.... Dear Mother, July 4 1863......sure wish I could have read the rest of the letter! I would definitely recommend removing 20th century papers from the back of old quilt tops, after copying the interesting and important pieces. Just MHO..... Laura


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 08:48:51 -0800 From: Laura Robins-Morris 

Maybe one or several of our more scholarly and knowledgable members could write an article presenting *the other side* and submit it to Quilters Newsletter and other quilt magazines. I imagine one couldn't directy criticize the book, but could present other thoughts on the matter. At the least, many more quilters might hear discussion they've not heard yet. I think the heated discussion has been in limited cirlce, and we're preaching to the converted (or however that saying goes). Debunking the myth would be a bit easier by starting within the quilting community. Any takers?

Another thing we could do is to present the other side to our individual guilds. Again, many quilters just don't know that there is a differing opinion on this.

Laura in Seattle

>>i honestly think it has become so embedded in the myths of history...that it >>will never be fully refuted.. >>but we can protest.. >>jeanL


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 12:13:47 EST From: KareQuilt@aol.com To: 

Barbara Brackman's article "Tradition or Truth: Myths of the Underground Railroad" appeared in Quilters Newsletter Magazine November 1997, even before HIPV was published.

Marsha McDowell's Keynote address ("Quilts and their Stories" Revealing a Hidden Secret") at the annual seminar of the American Quilt Study Group, East Lansing, Michigan, October 15, 1999, was published in Uncoverings 2000 (ordering source: AQSG2@unl.edu)

The counter argument to this one family's story as "true throughout the Underground Railroad" is already in print. But alas, the "real" story is seldom as "sexy" as the myth so the "popular press" will probably never give it the attention it has given the myth itself. That is our true dilemma.

Karen Alexander


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 13:09:04 -0800 From: "ChrisA" <chrisa@jetlink.net> To: 

Hi QHL- Subject: Re: [BQHL] HIPV again- I just responded to this email on the British list and am forwarding it to QHL too because it came up again recently and my website article was mentioned. Thanks for spreading the word...read on. Ursula's email is added in part at the bottom.

Hello Ursula,

Thank you for your recommendation to see the writings of Giles Wright and myself on the UGRR. You picked up on our main theme exactly. One only has to read shortly into the book HIPV, to realize that it is not research, but an account of one of the other's reflection on orally given information from an older woman sitting in a outdoor shopping area. The fact that this information was given several years before the book was published, but only a short time after the death of the source, should also be taken into consideration when the word credible or research is used.

Giles and I stay in contact about this, and just this morning he emailed me again. He appreciates the entire quilting community supporting the facts as they stand thus far and is delighted this information is getting out to the quilt world. It is his name I give when asked about speakers on the subject. He is the authority on the subject. I am criticizing the research methods, and giving possible explanations for why much of the quilt community and TEACHERS of all people, have been suckered in.

I'm certain he wouldn't mind me sharing the following from his email today:

"I am certain that by now the co-authors of HIPV are aware of what you and I have written about HIPV and yet I have heard nothing from them. Shouldn't they have undertaken some effort to respond to the criticisms of their book? Their silence seems to suggest they are unable to defend that which has probably earned them many dollars."

Kimberly Wulfert, PhD www.antiquequiltdating.com Email: quiltdating@jetlink.net

From Ursula- The issue we all have with HIPV is that the theory - that quilts with specific patterns were used in the famous Undergroud Railroad - is that apart from this SINGLE source - 150 years AFTER - there is no other evidence to back it up. I am not speaking from my own knowledge but repeating what I read on the following website. If what this reviewer says is true, we have to believe that either the authors of HIPV were making it all up, or their only source was. And this reviewer seems to have the right credentials. Read what she says.

The problem is, this is a very seductive theory, and has been very widely spread. It is VERY EASY to make conjectures about the origins of block patterns, and then to assume that that conjecture is true without checking. I know because it's a weakness of mine, and I've fallen into traps myself because of it.



This second link is the one Kimberly gives to a second well- respected historianl of the UGRR. PLEASE read it.

Ursula the nitpicker from Dundee

Ursula McKean umckea@scri.sari.ac.uk

Library Scottish Crop Research Institute Invergowrie Dundee DD2 5DA Scotland, UK


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 22:17:04 -0600 From: Peggy Keirstead <pkeirstead@attbi.com> 

I've noted recent postings on quilt care, but haven't seen my particular situation addressed.

I want to hand quilt a top that is probably about 40 years old. It's in very good condition, in a bowtie pattern made of bright colors against white pique; fabrics appear to be blends. I was able to lighten some stains by spot-washing them, but I'm reluctant to wash the entire top because I'm sure some of the fabrics will run. (I daubed them with a wet cotton ball and some color came off.) I could quilt the top as is, but I'm worried about down the line.

Should I wash the top now to prevent a future mess? If so, how? And should I quilt it first? (I'm using 100% cotton batting and backing.)

This is the first posting from a long-time lurker. I've gained a wealth of knowledge from QHLers, and know you'll have a solution.

Thank you. Peggy Keirstead in north central Texas


Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 22:44:07 -0800 From: "Tamara Williams" <tamtwill@attbi.com> 

Laurie - do you know if the book contains good pictures of the Mauna Kea Collection? I photographed it when I stayed there a few years ago, but since all the quilts are behind glass in an atrium there was unavoidable glare. I did the best I could, but I still like to see good studio photographs of those quilts.



Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 06:19:34 -0500 From: "Judy Kelius (judysue)" <judysue@ptd.net> To: Peggy Keirstead <pkeirstead@attbi.com>, QHL postings <QHL@cuenet.com> Subject: 

I've washed lots of tops of this vintage. I put them in the sink and fill it with water and keep changing the water until it is clear. This way any color that runs does not stick to other fabrics. (I know there is a product now that is supposed to help with this, but I've never had a problem so never tried it.) Sometimes the water is nearly black when I start out, and it can take a lot of rinses until it is clear. Then you can assess the stains again - it is so easy to replace patches within a top that I will often do that rather than try to remove the stains.

The other possibility is to remove any pieces with bad stains and replace them without washing the top. Or try removing the stained pieces, soaking them with a product for this purpose, and if the stains come out, just sew them right back.

At 11:17 PM 11/20/02, Peggy Keirstead wrote: >I've noted recent postings on quilt care, but haven't seen my particular > >situation addressed. > >I want to hand quilt a top that is probably about 40 years old. It's in > >very good condition, in a bowtie pattern made of bright colors against >white pique; fabrics appear to be blends. I was able to lighten some >stains by spot-washing them, but I'm reluctant to wash the entire top >because I'm sure some of the fabrics will run. (I daubed them with a >wet cotton ball and some color came off.) I could quilt the top as is, >but I'm worried about down the line. > >Should I wash the top now to prevent a future mess? If so, how? And >should I quilt it first? (I'm using 100% cotton batting and backing.) > >This is the first posting from a long-time lurker. I've gained a wealth >of knowledge from QHLers, and know you'll have a solution. > >Thank you. Peggy Keirstead in north central Texas


Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 09:55:08 -0600 (Central Standard Time) From: Mary Persyn 

Concerning the discussion about papers used in paper piecing and their turning brittle, this happens to be an area I know a little about.

Before circa 1850 paper was made from rags and the acid content of the paper was quite low. Circa 1850 (I don't remember exactly when) the process of making paper out of wood pulp was invented, and being much cheaper, soon became the process of choice. Unfortunately, the acid content of wood pulp paper is quite high, and the paper disintegrates in a "relatively" short period of time. The quality of the original paper has a lot to do with its life-span. Compare the pages of a book from 1950 with a newspaper from that same era.

I know something about the area because it is a problem in libraries. The wood pulp paper falls apart, and we find ourselves with torn and crumbled pages and broken (literally) edges on our books. And little scraps of paper all over the shelves. Libraries that can afford it have deacidification projects to protect their investments in materials. I spent an hour last week taping back together the pages in a book that we used for a legal research assignment and which was too brittle to take the usage.

All that being said, I'm not sure that even acidic paper doesn't have a longer life as a storage medium that do ditigal storage media.

Mary in overcast Valparaiso, IN



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