North Country quilting declined after the war years as an economic activity. It was carried forward by homemakers and enthusiasts. More women worked and people wanted new modern textiles that were factory made. However quilters such as Mary Lough, Florence Fletcher and Amy Emms all were teachers who excelled at the craft and taught classes. From these classes competitions were entered, the Women’s Institute continuing to promote the craft. Amy Emms was awarded an MBE for her ‘services to quilting’ and she created some beautiful pieces. The instructions in her book are very clear and well worth a look at. (Amy Emms’ Story of Durham Quilting’)
Women in the Dales did continue to quilt together to meet and chat, this was mainly at the village Church or Chapel.
I went on a course with Lilian Hedley to design a small wholecloth, which I enjoyed enormously. Since then I have explored the motifs and designs of the quilts and used them in my own work.
This design from a strippy quilt is one of my favourites and could be used as a border on any quilt.
If you would like the pattern please use the contact form and I will send it to you as a pdf.
To quilt a sampler you need 3 layers, plain cotton fabric (which has the design drawn on), the wadding and a backing fabric.
This is then pinned and tacked together to ensure the layers stay together while you work on them.
Quilting can be done using running stitch with quilting thread for a traditional look or 3 strands of a stranded embroidery thread to create a more colourful design. You could use a quilting frame as would have been done in the cottages of the Northern Dales.
My finished quilted sample using coloured embroidery thread.
If you have any questions or would like to share quilts and information it would be lovely to hear from you . Use the contact form and I’ll get back to you. Thank you for reading my blog and hope you have been inspired by it.
Enjoy your quilting and making beautiful textiles, textiles that will be treasured and admired for years to come.