Monday, April 27, 2009

Quilt Auction Find


I learned (or rather relearned) a quilt lesson this past weekend at the country auction - you cannot judge an antique/vintage quilt from a photo. Take the quilt photo on the top of this page. Doesn't it look great! This quilt was one of the main reasons I drove an hour in searing Georgia heat to look at quilts (yes, I do have AC but even so...)

Well folks in person it isn't the runway model it looks to be in the auction online listing. I was hoping it would be circa 1910 but it ended up being more like 1950. There were some fabrics in there that would outlast a nuclear explosion..thick, thick polyester and some pre-quilted mattress covering type of fabric. Call me a quilt snob but I will only go so far as to have silk, wool, cotton, velvet or corduroy in my quilts. The handles were machine stitched down with some raw edges peeking out (I don't think that was on purpose.) Also the batting in the bottom half had gone walk-about...there was very little quilting holding it all together. So no, I didn't get this one (though even knowing all that I took a quick breath when they held it up during the auction....)
Here is another that I loved in the photos. Not visiable is some rough polyester. The patternreminds me of the weaving projects we made at camp with gum wrappers.

It was interesting to see which ones they chose to put in the cataloge...there were several good ones on a side table that weren't showcased. Go figure.
Now I didn't think I was going to be able to afford this next one. It was part of a collection of Southern Folk Art and based on the listing I thought it would be out of my range. I was wrong!

I heard one dealer saying it was a poor quilt because the muslin backing was pulled to the front which "means it was not original (had repairs.) Lots of southern quilts don't have bindings and just turned the backing fabric over to the front...but hey, if he didn't want to bid on it because of the I was happy! He was also very critical of the points being lost on two sides...doesn't bother me too much...otherwise the piecing is really good and it has these great wonky baptist fans!
Also, this one is all cotton and has just one little spotty stain on the back (may be rust...)

This painting is by one of the artists that was represented in the southern folk art collection...I have two of his paintings. This one hangs in my kitchen. So the quilt should feel right at home in the hallway of red quilts right next door....

15 comments:

Jeanne said...

WOW you lucky Girl, that quilt is great. I am like you, if I am going to pay for it, I want it to be nice. I am a sucker for quilt blocks at auctions tho, that is what I always come home with. Then I finish them the way I want to. :) I will have to post some of my quilt block finds on my blog sometime soon. Glad you went and brought home a great quilt. HAVE FUN WITH IT. BTW I LOVE THE COLORS!!!!!

Lazy Gal Tonya said...

oh that star is a fantastic quilt. good thing for you that other guy looking was an idiot. things he was complaining about are some of what attracts me the most. that quilting is gorgeous. that basket quilt is beautiful though. how much did it go for?

Shasta said...

You have a fantastic find there! I just love auctions. Especially when the other people there are looking for something else. I wound up getting two whole tables full of stuff for $1. Then people bought a couple of things from me off the same table, and I got $2. 100% profit, and I still had most of the stuff!

Dionne said...

What a beautiful star quilt. I've never been to an auction before ~ except at a quilt guild. I have so little exposure to antique quilts! What a lucky find!
Cheers,
Dionne

Gina said...

Thank you so much for sharing this experience.
I have never been to a Quilt Auction and love reading your blog for such information.

Evelyn aka Starfishy said...

Alot of the old Southern quilts do use red instead of muslin as a backing - this is a stunning example! I love it! Cheers! Evelyn

Nines said...

Here's to a great find! That red is awesome!

Mary said...

I bought some tops off eBay a few years ago and you are absolutely right that it's very difficult to tell what you're getting from the photos. Some are better than they look and some are a lot worse. I didn't really care because I was going to quilt and use them for decorating but I never did get to them.

Gypsy Quilter said...

It's lovely . . really. I'm so glad you could give it a good home.

Clare said...

It is a gorgeous gorgeous quilt. I love it. In fact I'm glad you came home with that one and not the baskets, although I like them too.

Honestly - men! Tonya's right. He was an idiot. Do you think he's a Detective Inspector for the Quilt Police?

*karendianne. said...

How interesting. You know a lot about this sort of thing. I like the star and cracked up when you talked about the things we used to create wtih bubble gum wrappers! :) I liked the cute little basket quilt though. And yes, oh yes, I do admire you for going out in the Southern Heat. A/C and all. You have to live it here to know the pain of it, the sacrifice it takes to move out in the world of the South.

KimP said...

I think that guy was wrong about the quilt being repaired because the muslin backing was pulled to the front instead of having a separate binding. My great grandmother from Alabama made all her quilts this way. My family has dozens of them to prove it, and I can assure you no repairs were ever made. So glad you knew what you were looking at so you made some great finds!

Lynda said...

There is nothing like seeing things (quilts, pictures, cities, people, anything) in the flesh! You're right, the basket quilt looks fabulous, but what a shame they didn't look good when you got there. Happily your trip was fruitful, as the lone star is winderful!

Lucy said...

I love that star! the colors are so vibrant!

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