Sunday, October 8, 2017

a little more velvet

Velvet turns me on. It's not so much the way it feels, but the way it looks. I love how it catches the light. A few years ago I noticed a velvet dress made by Gretchen Jones on Project Runway, and the way it looked in the light made me sit up and take notice. It shimmered, but not like silk or satin.

The velvet dress by Gretchen Jones caught my attention on Project Runway.

Velvet quilts are not the easiest things to find, but I find them intriguing as Jones' orange velvet dress. Part of my process as a collector is to photograph acquisitions and share them. I can always depend on a velvet quilt to look good in a photograph.

This quilt, pictured at top, is all velvet including the backing. It is dated 1932, and there is also the letter "M" next to the date. It is unclear what the letter means. It could be anything from the initial of the quilt's owner to the letter of the month is was done, but these ideas are really just speculation. The embroidered date is done by hand in chain stitch.

The ring shapes - what are they all about?

Looking at other examples of velvet quilts including one in my collection, I notice there are often partial or full ring shapes in these quilts. If the rings were from garment scraps, what garments could've produced them? Perhaps collar cutaways?

One of my Facebook friends suggested the rings could be from hat making, and I liked the idea, but later thought they looked more like the brims than the cutaways. The storyteller in me would love to make up a tale about a secret society of velvet quiltmakers who used rings as a secret code, but there's already enough romanticism in quilt history. I'm happier just wondering.

1 comment:

  1. I think velvet quilts are so beautiful! I wonder why you don't see many new ones?