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Thread: How old is too old....

  1. #1
    Junior Member jeanne307's Avatar
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    Ok I am a newbie here and this may have come up before, but I have a question about fabric. My grandmother left me all of her quilting supplies, fabric, notions, you name it. While going through the fabric and quilt tops given to me I found several top and blocks that appear to have been made by my great grandmother. She has been gone for about 40 years so i am going to say that these tops and squares are about 60 or more years old. My question now... how old is too old for fabric to be quilted? I don't want to ruin the pieces, tops or blocks so I thought I would see what you talented and gifted ladies have to say. thanks in advance for your help.

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    I would like to know this myself. I have an old quilt top that I don't know if I should quilt or not.

  3. #3
    Senior Member dungeonquilter's Avatar
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    I have heard of many old tops being quilting to help perserve them, so I don't think any would be too old. However, is the fabric worn or frayed at all? This might have more to do with whether it can be quilted than the actual age.

  4. #4
    a regular here hazeljane's Avatar
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    I have a postage stamp quilt pieced by my great grandmother. (Who died in 1910). It is in excellent condition, and as soon as my skills are up to the challenge, I intend to quilt it.

    I think it depends on how brittle the fabric has become, and how it was stored. I frequently quilt tops that were pieced in the 30's with no problem at all.

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    Super Member Glassquilt's Avatar
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    Take it to a LQS and see what they say.

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    Super Member Glassquilt's Avatar
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    Take it to a LQS and see what they say.

  7. #7
    Junior Member jeanne307's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dungeonquilter
    I have heard of many old tops being quilting to help perserve them, so I don't think any would be too old. However, is the fabric worn or frayed at all? This might have more to do with whether it can be quilted than the actual age.
    As far as I can tell it isn't frayed... they seem to be in pretty good condition... just a little antiqued looking... but otherwise in excellent shape.

  8. #8
    Kas
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    It also depends on the age and rarity of the top. But if it is just for sentimental reasons you want it quilted and you aren't interested in the antique value, go for it. I guess what I am saying is if it is a 30's quilt, it has less value (right now) as an antique than say a quilt top from the 1800,s.

  9. #9
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    test the fabric and if still strong then quilt it and use it. Several years ago i had a top that was from late 1800 and needed some cleaning up. The pieces appeared to be stron so I gently washed it and all the brown squares disappeared. So depends on age, the dye used and how strong it is now.

  10. #10
    Junior Member jeanne307's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kas
    It also depends on the age and rarity of the top. But if it is just for sentimental reasons you want it quilted and you aren't interested in the antique value, go for it. I guess what I am saying is if it is a 30's quilt, it has less value (right now) as an antique than say a quilt top from the 1800,s.
    I'm not really sure how old it is... My great grandmother was born in 1889 so it could be something she made in the early 1900's... I also found some nine patch squares in her cedar chest. They were rolled up and tied with a ribbon and i don't know how old they are. I would like to take some of the ones that i don't have alot of (enough to make a quilt) and make a sampler out of it. I have a lot of different samples my grandmother did and then the ones my great grandmother did....

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