Encyclopedia > Patchwork

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Patchwork is a form of needlework or craft that involves using small pieces of fabric and stitching them together into a larger design, which is then usually quilted. Patchwork is traditionally 'pieced' by hand, but modern quiltmakers often use a sewing machine instead.

Patchwork enjoyed a widespread revival during the Great Depression because it was a way to recycle worn clothing into warm quilts. Even very small and worn pieces of material are suitable for use in patchwork, although crafters today more often use specially bought patchwork material as the basis for their designs.

Patchwork is most often used to make quilts, but it can also be used to make bags, wall-hangings, warm jackets, skirts and other items of clothing. Some textile artists[?] work with patchwork, often combining it with embroidery and other forms of stitchery.

Patchwork and quilting are both enjoying a huge resurgence in popularity around the world, particularly in the United States and Japan. A survey in America identified Quilting as a multi-million dollar industry. International quilting exhibitions attract thousands of visitors from around the globe, while countless smaller exhibitions are held every weekend in local regions. Active cyber-quilting communities abound on the web, books and magazines on the subject are published in the hundreds every year, and there are many active local quilting guilds and shops in different countries. 'Quilt Art' is established as a legitimate artistic medium, with quilted works of art selling for thousands of dollars to corporate buyers and galleries. Quilt historians and Quilt appraisers are re-evaluating the heritage of traditional quilting and antique quilts, while superb examples of antique quilts are purchased for large sums by collectors and museums.

Types of patchwork

Types of patchwork block

  • Aunt Sukey's Choice
  • Baby Blocks
  • Barbara Frietchie's Star
  • Bear's Paw
  • Blazing Sun
  • Bow Tie
  • Bridal Wreath
  • Brown Goose
  • Cactus Flower
  • California
  • Clay's Choice
  • Crosses and Losses
  • Dolly Madison Star
  • Double Irish Chain
  • Double X
  • Dresden plate*
  • Drunkard's path
  • Eccentric Star
  • Fish Block
  • Grandmother's Fan
  • Hen and Chickens
  • Hexagon
  • Hole in the Barn Door
  • Hovering Hawks
  • Jack-in-the-box
  • Jacob's Ladder
  • Lincoln's Platform
  • Log Cabin
  • Morning Star
  • Next Door Neighbour
  • Nine-patch
  • Ocean Waves
  • Ohio Star
  • Old Maid's Puzzle
  • Old Tippecanoe
  • Pineapple
  • Prairie Queen
  • Road to California
  • Rocky Road to Kansas
  • Schoolhouse
  • Shoo fly
  • Spider Web
  • Star of Bethlehem
  • Steps to the Altar
  • Tree of Life
  • Tulip
  • Turkey Tracks
  • Wandering Foot
  • Winding Ways
  • and many, many more

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