|Bed rug auctioned by Skinner in 2014, sold for $28,290|
|I try not to be envious, but was a little green when I saw this auction record|
One came up for auction at Skinner a couple years ago. It sold for $28,290. No idea who got it, but lucky them! I don't expect to see another for many years, but if I did, I would at least go to the preview to see it in person. A large part of my knowledge about quilts and coverlets comes from handling them or seeing them in person. I can only dream of handling a bed rug.
Bed rugs are very old, wonderfully exuberant, embroidered bedcovers. They are sometimes confused with hooked rugs because they resemble them in ways, but they are created with a needle using a wool or linen ground cloth or blanket, not with a hook using an open weave canvas. They are very beautiful and very warm. I am learning all about them from this great book Mom gave me for Christmas, "Bed Rugs, 18th & Early 19th Century Embroidered Bedcovers" by Jessie Armstead Marshall.
It's a really interesting book, with several illustrated examples of surviving bed rugs and information about how to make a bed rug. In fact, the author made one over a two-year period in the early 1970s, and she learned a lot in the process. She shares her notes in the book, including estate records of previous owners and makers of bed rugs. The book is a little scarce, and prices reflect that, but you can actually find it on Amazon. Looking at some of these very old bedcovers, I find it remarkable how bold and modern looking they are. Thanks, Mom, for the awesome book, and for always supporting my education and continuing education!