Social Aspects of Quilting

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Gossips by Eunice W. Cook.
Toward the middle of the nineteenth century, the social aspects of quilting parties resulted in group needlecraft for the making of signature, friendship, autograph, bride, album, and presentation quilts. Each quilt was generally intended for a special person or special occasion and conveyed the sentiments of the well-wishers. The donor or originator of the quilt planned the basic outline and assigned separate blocks to friends in the group. When the blocks were completed, the group gathered for a sociable afternoon to assemble the quilt, with its embroidered signatures or good wishes. The honored guest might have been a minister or his wife, an esteemed citizen, or a bride. The variety of designs and expressions of a dozen or more women produced a most interesting memento. The interrelationship of separate pieces created an ensemble of rare loveliness, quite revealing as an exercise in orginal folk arts and crafts.