Deep pink wholecloth quilt

Pink & Gold Welsh wholecloth

This quilt was made as a wedding present in about 1910 for a couple near Llandysul, which is a small town in Ceredigion in South West Wales – unfortunately, there is no record of their names or the name of the maker.

It is made of cotton sateen – deep pink on one side, and a rich gold on the other.

Deep yellow quilt
Gold side of Welsh wholecloth quilt

The layout is typical of Welsh quilts, with double lining separating the centre from a succession of borders.

The centre circle contains a six-pointed flower with a leaf and double spiral motif filling in the spaces between the petals. The corners of the surrounding rectangle have a trefoil, and the remainder of the space is filled with nested zig-zags.
Six-pointed flower motif with leaf & double spirals
The first border is made up of repeated paisley pear motifs; six on the longer sides, and five on the shorter sides. The tops of these are stitched in spirals. At each corner there is a different motif with four leaves. Cross-hatching fills the next narrower border.
Repeated paisley border with four-leaf corner
The use of a different motif within a lined square at the corner, such as roses, four-leaf or simple diagonal grids is a very common feature, particularly on Welsh quilts. Their use can be a good way for less experienced quilters to avoid complicated planning.
The final border includes a variety of repeated motifs within individual frames set next to each other, which makes planning corner motifs simple,
The outer border is composed of three different motifs within boxes

Notice how the designer was able to make the border shorter on the top and bottom sides by reducing the size of the motif at the centre of the border as here:

Smaller flower with more echo quilting reduced the width of this section
A final narrow border with a simple looped design completes the quilt before the final double line of hand-stitching around the edge.
Final narrow border and butted edge
The quilt is filled with quite thick sheep’s wool. The springy quality of this makes the quilting stand out very clearly.
To look at other beautiful quilts, return to the Wholecloth page
All photographs on this page were taken by Helena Dolby