Gift of Alice Larson, TTU-H2017-003-002. Courtesy of Museum of Texas Tech University.
Feed Sack Quilt from Dallas Estate Sale
By Marian Ann J. Montgomery, Ph.D.,
Curator of Clothing and Textiles, the Museum of Texas Tech University
The piece has a definite artistic and Art Deco feeling and makes one wonder about the maker. How interesting that the maker had access to so many beautiful prints from the “free” feed sack fabric and the funds to purchase the black print and the bright yellow background. Please be inspired by this beautiful piece to label your quilts so we can give credit to your beautiful work.
Sometimes a lovely donation comes into the Museum with little or no information as to its original maker or occasion for the piece, as the quilt was purchased at an estate sale or auction. One of these “orphan” quilts is now on exhibit as part of the feed sack exhibit, Cotton and Thrift: Feed Sacks and the Fabric of American Households, at the Museum of Texas Tech University through December 15, 2019.
The unusual yellow and black Grandmother’s Fan variation donated by Alice Larson was given to the museum in 2016. Alice found the quilt at an estate sale in Dallas, TX, but unfortunately sales agents had no information to share about the piece.
The quilt is in excellent condition and the use of black is remarkable for the late 1930s, early 1940s when the feed sack fabrics were available. I’ve not seen other examples of the use of black and chrome yellow with the feed sack fabrics at the time, but they certainly make for a very striking quilt.
The Art Deco inspired quilt makes one wonder about the maker's ability to access so many beautiful prints from the “free” feed sack fabric and the funds to purchase both the additional black print and bright yellow background fabric. Please be inspired by this beautiful piece to label your quilts so we can give credit to your beautiful work for future generations to enjoy.
In case you aren't able to view the exhibit in person, don't miss the unique opportunity to learn more fascinating tips and feed sack stories during the Monday 28th luncheon at the upcoming International Quilt Fesitval in Houston, TX, where Curator and author, Dr. Marian Ann Montgomery will be the speaking and selling the companion exhibit catalog.
Learn more about the Museum of Texas Tech University Textile Collections.