Friday, August 10, 2012

Reverse Applique

The shadow behind flowers is from the untrimmed red showing through
I ran across this little crib quilt yesterday at the RMQM - Sandra Dallas Library.

There it was, in all its glory - hanging above the copy machine.

It is tagged c. 1830
    Maker Unknown
    Irish Chain Crib Quilt
    36" Square

Besides the small scale (3/4" squares) 3" border
The ENTIRE border is reverse applique.

This is the corner detail.
The center red circle is 1/16th of an inch.

Spectacular needlework!

Three fabrics in the quilt, still in good condition.

Hope to see this one again - soon.

Pavilion 4 Quilt 1166 

I recall some other spectacular quilts that made use of extensive reverse applique.

This one is from the Infinite Variety exhibit in NYC.

It is reverse applique, embroidery finished with exceptional hand quilting.

Here are some detail pictures of the hand work.

Embroidered stems, reverse applique berries, leaves and stems.

Along the right edge of the picture you can see some of the embroidery.

This is a close up of the 1/4" - 1/2' berries - every one of them reverse appliqued.

The other quilt that is primarily reverse applique is in the Shelburne Quilt Collection.  I think it is pictured in the book, Art of the Needle: 100 Masterpiece Quilts from the Shelburne Museum,  
Another book:  Enduring Grace - Quilts from the Shelburne Museum Collection
It is a medallion vessel with flowers - but my books are still in storage - one of you will tell me and I'll update this!

Are you doing any reverse applique?
I have a but in some of my floral applique - but nothing as extensive as these examples.

Have a great weekend!


  1. I don't remember ever doing reverse applique. Would like to try sometime. These are gorgeous examples. Now that you are in CO are you fairly close to this museum? Sounds like a treasure trove!

  2. Hi Dawn!! What a gorgeous quilt!! No I have never done reverse applique, in fact don't even know what it is - so can you enlighten me?!! I love the beautiful work that you always post!!

    Have a cool Colorado day!!

  3. Yes, fairly close - and I was out and about looking at countertops. Can't be in the area of a quilt opportunity and not stop!

  4. I have done a bit of reverse applique in a piece but never the amount in the quilt shown. Beautiful workmanship.

  5. Oh my goodness!

    What a great little quilt. I have never tried reverse applique. Probably will do it someday. Thanks for the post.


  6. The crib quilt is spectacular. I've done reverse appliqué before and even lately on the Roseville Album quilt designed by Kim McLean that I'm working on now, but definetly not like the examples you've shown.

  7. What a gorgeous little quilt!
    I have never tried reverse applique, though my daughter has done it on a skirt.
    At the Home Machine Quilting Show in SLC last Spring there was an entire large 2 color quilt of 6 inch blocks (I think) made in reverse applique--with a gorgeous border. It is on my blog in a May post titled "As Promised--the Quilts" if you want to check it out.

  8. Wow, so beautiful! I've tried a bit of reverse applique, but not for a long time. And no way as nice either!

  9. I don't usually even think about doing it for some reason, but those quilts are gorgeous!

  10. I have done a lot of reverse applique and in some ways it is easier that the other way. I did a large heart with feathers and it went pretty fast.
    Those quilts are beautiful!

  11. Reverse applique seems to be my downfall. I have no idea why since I think I'm fairly proficient at regular applique.

    These are beautiful quilts! I have the first Shelburne book you mentioned - somewhere. It's a wonderful book.

  12. Ok, I am slow - what is reverse applique??

  13. I use it when I need it! lol I did do a little reverse applique on the BTCT quilt.
    Love the first quilt you showed. Wowser!

  14. What a wonderful resource you have landed near! Love the photos.

    My only reverse applique experience was minimal - after a Terri Thompson workshop, but I did enjoy it.

  15. Adorable little quilt. I am not doing any currently but it is fun to do.

  16. Just gorgeous and beautiful hand quilting.

  17. So beautiful! And over the copy machine, sheesh. Can't believe the heat and dust from the copier is good for the quilt....

  18. Hello there, I just found you and what a wonderful blog you have. It is very inspiring - makes me want to go get my needle an give it a whirl:) Thank you for sharing. You have a new follower.
    Happy Stitches,
    * if you like, take a peek at my blog.

  19. I can barely applique up to standard, definitely not ready for reverse applique! Wonderful needlework on the quilts.

  20. Goodness, how did I miss this post!!
    The first quilt is spectacular!! Amazing work! I like doing reverse applique, but I have never tried anything that tiny or that detailed! Hmmm, my next challenge, maybe!

  21. Hanging above the copier! :0) Wow what a quilt! I would never have the patience to finish that! Enjoyed all your pictures- just lovely!

  22. I've never done anything this extensive with reverse applique but it would be a wonderful way to get feathers if you don't machine quilt well enough to do it with threads. Beautiful quilt.


Thanks for your comments!