Monday, September 28, 2015

Caesar's Crown

One of the joys of writing about quilts is getting a chance to photograph and study quilts in my collection. I have been writing about quilt history for almost 3 years for the National Quilting Association and have just started a new column for Discover Vintage America, a midwest antique publication (more about that in a later post).
c. 1860 Pennsylvania

My recent NQA article was on the interesting block Caesar's Crown, King David's Crown, Crown of Thorns, Full Blown Tulip, etc. etc. (many different names and piecing variations). One of my favorite thing about the pattern is the secondary cross or bells formed when the blocks are joined without sashing (see above).

It is not a very common pattern due to the difficult curved piecing involved in the design. YES, you read that correctly, the block is generally curved pieced not appliqued. In finding a few more to add to my collection, I was surprised to find that it was used as a signature quilt pattern in the 1840s and 50s and even a century later in the 1940's and 50s.
Dated 1850, signature quilt, Pennsylvania 
And here's one from c. 1945 with names embroidered in the centers.
C. 1945 signature top


  1. Fascinating, Sandra! Can't believe those blocks are pieced!
    Fun to see you at Quiltfest. Do you know if you will be teaching there again next year? One of these days I need to get into a class of yours!

  2. Oh my, such a striking block. Yes, my first thought was applique. Amazing curved piecing. Love the secondary design in the middle one hanging on the line and the circle created by the red pieces. Wow, thanks for sharing these beauties!

  3. One of my favorite traditional blocks is a snail trail but there are so many others too. I love traditional style quilts. Your block is beautiful.

  4. I just found your site and was interested to find the block. Ceasars Crown. I bought 30 blocks at an estate sale last summer and finally identified it. The last piece was missing so they were not square. I took the time to baste them and did a machine applique (just a straight stitch) I think they are from the 40s and some look like feed sacks. When the quilt is finished will send pictures if you would like. Thanks again Kit


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