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Quilts : Their Story and How to Make Them Paperback – September, 1990

3.6 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Fans of quilt history are going to be retiring their well-thumbed copies of Marie Webster's 1915 classic "Quilts" and replacing them with this new and improved edition.... Rosalind Webster Perry has reprinted the text and photos, adding fond family insight into how Webster came to be both America's first quilt authority and an influential designer. We always enjoy a two-generation quilt, where a granddaughter finishes up a set of family blocks. Here we have a parallel in print. Rosalind Perry is to be congratulated on the care she has taken to carry on her grandmother's legacy. -- Barbara Brackman, Quilter's Newsletter Magazine

Marie Webster is one of the legendary figures in the history of quiltmaking. She was an avid investigator who searched out unusual quilts, lectured about them, wrote about them and motivated many people to participate in the quilt revival of the early 1900s. She set a standard for fine design and excellent craftsmanship that changed the direction of 20th century quiltmaking.... Rosalind Webster Perry has provided today's readers with a new edition of "Quilts" and a delightful biography of its author... -- Bets Ramsey, The Chattanooga Times

The research that went into this book, published by Doubleday in 1915, still stands today as useful and interesting. Any quilter interested in the history or in pre-1930 patterns will want to add this book to their shelves. -- Lady's Circle Patchwork Quilts

From the Publisher

This edition of Marie Webster's Quilts: Their Story and How To Make Them celebrates the 75th anniversary of the publication of America's first quilt book. This Practical Patchwork edition is unique because it includes all the text and color illustrations of the first edition, plus many additional photos, as well as a biography of Marie Webster, notes, index and bibliography, all at a very reasonable price. This is a classic that belongs in every quilt lover's library.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Practical Patchwork (September 1990)
  • ISBN-10: 0962081167
  • ISBN-13: 978-0962081163
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #981,402 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on June 5, 1999
Format: Paperback
This is a really interesting book, if quilt history is your thing. It's the first quilt book ever published in America, in 1915. The language is elegant and quaint, and the section of color photos of the author's own designs is superb. It's not a how-to book for hobbyists, nor is its history highly accurate if you want the "real" scoop on quilting. But for serious students, specialists, and layreaders interested not only in quilting, but also in women's history, this book is invaluable.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I should have read the reviews before orderin this book. Yes, the history
was interesting and I learned alot. The problem was that the list of colour
plates were missing, the list of black and white illustrations were missing,
the illustrations in text (quilting designs) were missing. The reason I
ordered this book was to learn how to make the quilting designs. If I had
known these were missing I would have gone to a regular bookstore to order it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Filiquarian Publishing is deceptively marketing a $9.99 reprint of Webster's classic quilt history book. It is a cheesy print-on-demand text-only version, with none of the original color and black-and-white illustrations. It is certainly not a "high quality" paperback. How can a quilt book be "high quality" without a single illustration!
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Format: Kindle Edition
The kindle sample is totally useless. Based on other reviews I wanted to find out if there were any color plates in the kindle edition. All you get is one page, the table of contents, with links that ALL go to the same message offering to sell the book.
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Written in 1915, this little book is a treasure trove of information on the history of quilting. The author begins with the earliest origins of piecing bits of cloth together from the Bible to ancient Egypt and provides fascinating information on how the Egyptian revolutionized dyeing of fabrics. This e-book version does not contain the color plates that were part of the original publication but it is still an amazing resource for those interested in the evolution of quilt-making.

Marie Webster must have spent countless hours doing research in order to record the wealth of information contained in this volume. She discusses quilting in Persia and Turkey then moves through Europe and then into the British Isles providing endless anecdotes and comments on the stories recorded throughout history of gods and goddesses, royals and clergy, saints and artists who used needles, thread and fabric to create everything from home decor to the vestments worn by Popes.

Immigrants brought the art of quilting to America and some of her most interesting chapters recount stories of quilting int his country. She tells one story I particularly loved about a quilting bee held in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania during the time of the Civil War. Since I grew up not all that far from there and remember "quiltings" at my grandmother's house, I certainly loved this and was surprised that there was little difference in the quiltings despite the difference of a century. She even gave the rather amazing menu for the lunch served at that event. She concludes her history of quilting parties in America with the re-telling of a lovely little story about a quilting bee written by Harriet Beecher Stowe. She also discusses the origin of names of patterns that have long, long traditions.

If you love reading about the history of handcrafts, this is just a delicious little book.
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I also found this book to be disappointing due to the lack of illustrations. The content was very interesting and I learned alot of the history ,but without the illustrations it was not as good. Examples of what was being talked about would have been helpful.
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I am an experienced quilter, who enjoys creating quilts and is interested in the history of quilt making. This book contains no illustrations or instructions on making quilts. However, it contains a very detailed and interesting history of quilts and quilt making. I learned a lot of small new details that I did not know before and enjoyed reading this book very much.

The book was written n 1915 and starts with a brief explanation of quilt making. Then it starts its journey into the history of quilt making. The roots of quilting and weaving are dated back by their appearance in ancient art work. For example, the images of a loom appear in 2650 B.C. The old piece of patchwork can be found in a Museum of cairo and dates to 960 B.C.

The book traces the appearance of patchwork during Trojan War, Middle Ages, Renaissance. Appliqué makes it appearance in Florence (described as cut work). There a very lengthy chapter on history of quilts in America, which I found very interesting. There is an interesting chapter on quilt block names. I never gave the block names much thought but the author organized them by themes such as political, religion, sky. and it gave me a fresh new way to think about the blocks I know and love.

I found the book educational and enjoyable. Great trip into history!

Ali Julia review
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Format: Kindle Edition
This book is so much better "with" the illustrations which the Amazon copy doesn't include. This book is a "Project Gutenburg" book. Google the title and go to the "project Gutenburg" link to read it and see the illustrations online. The "gutenburg.org" link will allow you to download the book to your computer. (or type: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/24682 into your browser.) The download is free. They have two formats for Kindle users, one with illustrations and one without. (If you Google it from your Kindle, you can use the download link to download it directly to your Kindle.)

This book covers the history of quilts including the Middle Ages, Old England and American pioneers. It explains how quilts are made, followed by a section on quilt names with an illustration and bit of history about how the name came to be. Its an older book but if you like quilting and are interested in history, this is the book for you.
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