Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Seeking Origins of Manufactured New York Beauty

Has anyone seen this quilt before? It's a New York Beauty, but it was mass-produced. I'm looking for leads on the manufacturer. When I bought the quilt on eBay a few years ago, I had a feeling it was one of those quilts made overseas for distribution in the United States. Originally, I thought it might be a 50's quilt, but the trend toward manufacturing quilts was more of an 80's thing.

The quilt is totally symmetrical with a very streamlined pattern and a telltale knife-edge binding. Many of the quilts produced overseas were finished with this type of binding, so it's an important clue. A small section of the binding was pulled open, presumably where a tag had been. Although the colors are right for an early 20th century quilt, other details such as the size and the binding are wrong. It is sparsely hand quilted, but still feels mass-produced. To my eye, the quilt has a rather cold, mechanical look.

During the last year, I saw another one just like it on eBay, confirming what I'd thought all along. I was tempted to buy it, but decided I'd just try to research it. Now I'm looking for any information that would lead to the name of the company that manufactured the quilt. If you've seen it, happen to have one with a tag, or know of anyone who researches this genre of manufactured quilts, please send me a note.


  1. I was looking at import quilts to day and I found an import beauty from Arch, kind of teal blue and pinkish red.
    scroll down to misc. quilts
    You could contact Leigh and see if she has any ideas.

  2. Thank you, Sandra! I found that link, too. The design shares some characteristics. Perhaps mine is an earlier or later version. I'm planning to contact Leigh, at the very least to share the picture with her.

  3. Hi, it's Leigh. No border, eh? Weird, because it looks sort of....amputated that way. Not an Arch, but there are (and have been) a bazillion Asian knockoff manufacturers for going on three decades, so I don't think you're going to be able to ID it. Nice colors, though; of course the blue mimics how double-process green would've faded out. And thanks to the previous poster for recommending my site.

  4. Hi Leigh!!

    No border, just a knife edge with a small opening where the label was ripped out. It does look amputated. Good observation. Many of the quilts made with this pattern would have had borders, and that would've been a smart move to avoid extra piecework. The blue also reminds me of an early 20th century synthetic blue that I've seen in Colonial Revival quilts, kind of like a cadet blue.

    If you come across anything, let me know. I'm holding out hope that one day a quilt with a label will surface.

  5. Might be Lands End or Smithsonian. Too intricate for online quilt.

  6. I have seen that quilt before,, and at a distance looks wonderful,, then could see up close a repro... was at the Quilt Affair in Colorado a few years ago. Cindy R. (not sure how to post to this correctly)