Quilt Study: Pink and Brown Stars

Join me in examining my newest antique quilt acquisition. I collect what I like without special regard to pattern, color or condition and am particularly excited by this one. It is the first antique I have that is in pink and brown. Just think, there was a quilter running around 100+ years ago who also liked stars and the pink and brown combo.

The quilt is approximately 73″ x 77″ and the blocks are just under 5″. The binding is narrow, about 1/4″, and is hand applied. Notice the one block that is three up from the bottom and three over from the left in the photo below? Oops! The Ebay seller stated that this quilt contained “a rare deliberate mistake.” Excuse me? Did someone get a communication from beyond the grave? Who can really know if it was a deliberate mistake? It is quirky and quaint but who knows if it was intentional or just a boo-boo.

Here’s a look at the quilting. Each plain square has that same flower pattern quilted into it. The star blocks are also quilted the same way except for the stars around the edges. Take a look at the direction of the quilting in the corner squares of star blocks below and compare it to the star blocks in the next photo.

See? The quilting in these corners below is in a different direction. All the stars in the outer perimeter have the same quilting which is very slightly different than the interior stars.

A pink star. Somebody cut off her star points. I’m just sayin…

I find a lot of antique quilts that include checks and stripes but not many reproduction lines include them. There is a little bit of this brown discoloration in this quilt but not much. I also like the shade of the background fabric. It definitely isn’t snowy white. It has that soft patina that Jo Morton captures so well in her shirting fabrics.

Here’s a brown star. I love this fabric. I’ve seen some repros that are similar to the print below but not exactly. Girlfriend needs to work on those star points.

And, another brown. Again, I’ve definitely seen some similar repros. This quilt has quite a few different fabrics which is one of its biggest appeals. It’s a great sample of pink and brown fabrics.

There is one place where the quilt was repaired. Whoever did it was quite effective at hiding it. If you look closely at the photo below, you can see a rectangular patch (pretty much right in the center of the photo) that is hand stitched down. This is the back of the quilt.

This is the front side of the repair. The fabrics don’t match too well – at least not compared to the match of the back – but she tried. The new patches are appliqued on top and were quilted through to match the original quilting.

One other acquisition is the book pictured below and what a fabulous deal it was. I bought The Quilt Engagement Calendar Treasury for less than $10, including shipping. It is packed with over 150 full page photos and a quick look revealed several that I have seen reproduced by contemporary quilters. It was so inspiring I bought another and will have the spine removed and a spiral binding put on so I can easily flip through and use it for design and color ideas. You can find used copies for as low as $1 (plus shipping which is usually around $4) on Amazon, Ebay or Abebooks.

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  1. What an awesome find! I love that quilt, and could see myself enjoying making one like it. Seeing the detail of the repair job was so interesting.

  2. What a great quilt, Taryn! It's always nice to look at the fabrics. If the seller was a quilter, they would have known that mistakes are unfortunately not intentional often enough. 🙂

  3. It's a beautiful quilt — I love the way those stars sparkle among all the white. It's funny — I saw this listing on ebay and was laughing about the "rare deliberate error." I've made a few quilts with these rare errors, but mine were definitely not deliberate.

  4. Fantastic post Taryn! I really enjoyed studying your quilt with you. What a beautiful aquisition. Do you think you might try to reproduce it one day?

  5. What a great quilt! Lucky you. I love these little star and pink and brown is one of my favorite combos – ever.
    Maybe she was drinking and quilting again, lol….

  6. Where in the world has your beautiful blog been all my life??? LOL

    Seriously love the pink and brown quilt and I studied ever single picture, close up! Thank you for sharing!

  7. Thank you for sharing so many details of your new quilt – I LOVE it!! It has such lovely, soft pinks and browns.
    I also love that book – I have 2 copies too. One for upstairs and one for downstairs :0) I find I refer to it a lot.

  8. Love your find, and as Kaye England once said – "the points aren't missing, they are just hiding"! It certainly detracts nothing from the quilt. I'm happy for you and your new purchase – that an old quilt finds a home with someone who appreciates it. It was fun to see!

  9. "Rare deliberate mistake"? Try to parse that one! I'll bet the misplaced piece wasn't found until the quilt was assembled and the maker decided to leave it that way.

    It's a lovely acquisition!

  10. What a treasure with all these fabrics! I just bought that book you are showing as a calendar and WOW does it have some amazing samples in it. I've looked at it every night before bed for the last week. A great buy for about $6.

  11. OH Taryn what a beautiful quilt, how lucky are you that you won this quilt on ebay. It is a treasure to my eye as well.
    great book, one of my favorites.

  12. Beautiful quilt,Taryn. I just bought a red and white one that's similar. When l visited Houston last year l collected pinks and browns to make my 2010 memory quilt of my trip. I have a quilt in mind, an antique l missed out on buying. Might be time to start it next week. Love that book. I bought my copy off a friend a few years back who had 2. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Great quilt! I love the color placement of the blocks too! Very nice! And the book…one of my very fav's! Mine's looking a little dog-eared, but I do love looking thru it regularly…Great inspiration!

  14. A wonderful post and a beautiful quilt. I find it amazing that 100 years ago someone made such a beautiful quilt. Lucky you!

  15. Great post! I love inspecting antique quilts, thanks for the close up photos. I've seen a few antique brown and pink star quilts in books, so I know they are out there, but I've never seen one in person. Good find!

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