Thursday, May 6, 2010
"Quilt" Dishes, 1944
Here's my dining room table set with my 'quilt' dishes, circa 1944. We rarely use the dining room, so about a month ago I set the table as you see it here, thinking I would post about these great 'quilt' dishes...and tell you their story. Today is the day!
Long ago, in Nebraska, a lady named Grace McCance Snyder made a quilt using a set of dishes given to her by her daughter as inspiration. The dishes were in a petit point pattern of roses and other flowers in a basket, so Mrs. Snyder set about making the quilt with 13 basket blocks, each one 18" and measuring 25" from corner to corner, diagonally. There are 87, 789 tiny triangles in the quilt! Her quilt was named The Flower Basket Quilt and was finished in 1944, the year I was born.
In 1985, I bought a book entitled American Patchwork & Quilting, published by Better Homes and Gardens. Inside, I found photos of this quilt (pages 294/295) and some instructions and a graph of the block design (page 309). You can also use the graph for cross-stitch, if you'd like. Although I knew I'd never attempt this quilt, it grabbed my attention right away and that's how I learned the story of how this quilt was made. I'm sure you can find out more by doing a Google search if you are interested.
I have many pieces of these dishes...finding some of them over several years and piecemeal at flea markets here and there. The pattern is "Basket P.P", made by the Salem China Co. in the USA. A friend, Carol (also known as Crayola) gave me some serving pieces...a very kind and generous act indeed. That old navy man saw a whole box full of the dishes at a flea market and immediately bought them, as it was my birthday and he KNEW I'd want them to add to my growing collection. One of my best presents ever! Then, my friend, Jim, found the coffee pot you see here and gave it to me...what a gem it is and I'm so glad to have it. Another fine and generous gift! I am very lucky, indeed.
Enlarge the photo of the set table and you can see near the coffee pot and plate a small version of this flower basket sitting on a tiny easel I made from wire....that is a pin made from one of the coffee cups. I found this pin at the Houston Quilt Festival...in a booth called "Broken China Jewelry." I'm sure you could Google them to find out more.
Well, though I will never make anything like this quilt...I will continue to search for the dishes....there is that 'thrill of the hunt" and I might even find some pieces I don't have.
Aren't they just gorgeous!!! Hope you enjoyed the story....take care, pat