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QUILTING What you need to know



Published: Fri, May 25, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



THREE PARTS TO A PATCHWORK QUILT:

Top patch layer: Is made of individual fabric shapes joined with other patches to make a block or a quilt -- also known as piecework. Several students in Smith's third-grade class made log cabin patches. A log cabin quilt is a patchwork variation in which narrow fabric strips, or logs, surround a center square to form a block.

Middle layer or batting: The filling in a quilt or the middle layer of a quilt sandwich. May be made of cotton, wool or polyester.

Backing: The fabric used as the bottom layer of the quilt sandwich. Can also be brought around to the front as a border.

TECHNICALLY SPEAKING:

The difference between a quilt and a comforter. According to Pat McConnell, five-year quilting judge for the Canfield Fair, there are two ways to hold the three layers of the quilt together:

Secured with yarn tied through the three layers and knotted -- using this method, the finished product is technically called a comforter.

Secured with quilting stitches -- using this method, the finished product is called a quilt.

HISTORY OF THE PATCHWORK QUILT:

Difference between a patchwork and an appliqu & eacute; quilt: A patchwork quilt is made by sewing pieces together to form a pattern. Appliqu & eacute; is from the French words, "to apply," therefore pieces are sewn on top of other fabric to form a design.

Quilts started centuries ago in Europe and Asia. Initially quilts were not patchwork and they were not blankets, but clothing. In Asia three-layers of material were put together for warm clothing.

Patchwork quilts probably started in Europe or the U.S.A. because there wasn't ready access to large pieces of fabric needed to make blankets. Patchwork quilts started as a good way to use fabric that they didn't want to waste.

WHAT QUILTING JUDGES LOOK FOR:

The way pieces are put together -- squares meet and points aren't cut off.

The quilt lays flat and true.

Straight edges.

Straight lines -- any visual lines that are supposed to be straight are straight.

Borders straight, not wavy.

Even quilting stitches.

Binding put on properly.

Overall visual effect -- how colors work together.

MUSEUM:

Paducah, Ky., is the home of the Museum of the American Quilter's Society and site of the Society's Annual Quilt Show and Conference, which draws thousands of visitors every April.

UPCOMING LOCAL QUILT SHOW:

United Quilt Guild Quilt Show, June 23, 24 at Kent State University's Salem Campus. Featuring all sizes of quilts and some quilted clothing.

Source: PBS 45/49 Web site: http://www.pbs.org/americaquilts/




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