The Difference Between Amish Quilts and Other Quilts (part 1)
When you talk about quilts, there are so many different types, styles, and techniques that it can be somewhat confusing to figure out the differences between Amish quilts and the many other kinds of quilts. While each style has its own unique characteristics, knowing how to identify each type of quilting style will make it that much easier for you to distinguish Amish quilts from all the other kinds of quilts out there.
One of the first styles of quilts that were introduced to the early settlers of the United States was the whole-cloth quilt. In fact, most quilts, including Amish quilts, originated from the whole-cloth style of quilting. Whole-cloths consist of a single large piece of fabric of one color, rather than piecing together multiple fabrics of multiple colors. Whole-cloth quilt designs are intricately stitched into the piece of fabric with needle and thread. While this may sound simple, it actually takes a very skilled sewer to create these beautiful patterns. Whole-cloth quilts are generally made from bold, dark colors and the stitching patterns can include floral designs, feathers, people, animals, buildings, ships, or geometric shapes.
Another popular quilting style is the chintz appliqué quilt, also called a broderie perse quilt or Persian embroidery quilt. Chintz quilts use brightly colored pieces of fabric that are cut out into flowers or other designs and are then stitched on top of a quilted piece of whole-cloth. Chintz quilts will usually have a single ornate floral design stitched into the middle of the quilt or multiple designs stitched around the border of the quilt. These are not pieced quilts, like Amish quilts, because the pieces of fabric are attached to the top of the quilt rather than as a part of the original quilted top sheet. However, chintz quilts evolved over the years and many of them were pieced together with multiple repeating squares using these multi-colored floral patterns.
Medallion quilts are pieced together using multiple pieces of colored or patterned fabrics, but they are quite different from the typical quilts that are popular today. Medallion quilts start out with a central block design in the middle of the quilt and then the rest of the quilt consists of ever-increasing borders that surround the central design. These quilts are usually put together using symmetrical rectangular strips that radiate out toward the edges, but can also include uneven pieces of fabric, appliqué designs, solid fabrics, or patterned fabrics. The focal point of the medallion quilt is always on the central design in the middle square of the quilt. This central design eventually developed into what is now most commonly known as pieced quilting. The popular star block pattern was made from multiple pieces of fabrics and put together in a more complicated geometric design. This style became more and more popular with quilters and was eventually adopted by Amish quilters for their original designs.
The Difference Between Amish Quilts and Other Quilts (part 2)