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Thread: Calling All Collectors of Vintage/Antique Quilts

  1. #1

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    I have an affinity for all things vintage/antique...especially quilts. Over the past few years I have made some wonderful finds on Ebay. I seem drawn to quilts of the 1930's and 1940's. My goal is to only buy unwashed quilts that have been both handpieced and handquilted. I continue to be in awe of the fine handwork...mostly 10-12 SPI!!!!!(I'm struggling to consistently get 8 SPI.) The seller have often shared the history of the quilt, which is important to me. It seems to be getting harder and harder to find these treasures.
    I would enjoy hearing from fellow quilters who also collect. Has Ebay been a quilt source for you? Do you actually use your treasures?
    Busy Hands...Happy Hearts
    Patricia

  2. #2
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    have you looked at antique stores, I found one the other day for $45.00 was very old, but didn't buy it

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by craftybear
    have you looked at antique stores, I found one the other day for $45.00 was very old, but didn't buy it
    Wow, what a find!!! The pricing on quality quilts in antique stores in my are are way, way out of my price range. I live in Yorktown Heights, NY which is about 40 minutes north of NYC.
    Patricia

  4. #4
    Super Member Luv Quilts and Cats's Avatar
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    I usually see them at quilt shows. I just bought 2 tops recently at a local quilt show. Yes, I am going to finish them and use them. I do look on ebay but have not bought any there yet. I was told to check flea markets and yard sales, which I have not done yet. You can also look on etsy.com, they have vintage fabrics and quilts for sale.

  5. #5
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    also look at flea markets and rummage sales, estate sales, goodwill stores etc. have fun

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Luv Quilts and Cats
    I usually see them at quilt shows. I just bought 2 tops recently at a local quilt show. Yes, I am going to finish them and use them. I do look on ebay but have not bought any there yet. I was told to check flea markets and yard sales, which I have not done yet. You can also look on etsy.com, they have vintage fabrics and quilts for sale.
    If you buy on Ebay, be advised that sellers(dealers) vary greatly in how they weigh their words...what's "mint" to one is "fair" by another's standards. I learned the hard way!!!
    Patricia

  7. #7
    a regular here hazeljane's Avatar
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    A couple of years ago, when I was single, paying two mortgages and out of work, I sold most of my quilt collection on eBay. (and my dishes, and my depression glass... lucky for me I had good sense in collecting.) I have also bought a few tops. And yes, my advice would be to ask for as many pictures as you can, and for the top to be laid flat in a pic, if that's what your buying. I have one I purchased that will never quilt flat. I use ebay daily- Read the feedback, deal with people who have good feedback, and ask for details if there aren't enough. If they don't want to send more pics or details, move on.

  8. #8
    Super Member pollyjvan9's Avatar
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    Just last weekend I bought 6 quilts and 2 quilt tops at an estate auction. The highest priced one was a full size double wedding ring in excellent shape and was $65.00. One is a sunbonnet sue that the binding is completely worn off and some of the hand buttonhole stitching is gone but it is beautiful. I am going to repair it and use it. One is what they called a cutter quilt. Not sure what that means bus I am not going to cut it up. It is a grandmothers flower garden and several of the rings have completely disappeared but I am going to cover the whole thing with tulle. I guess I am a collector now, huh? I am going to finish the grandmother flower garden that is the top only and give it to one of my girls.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pollyv9
    Just last weekend I bought 6 quilts and 2 quilt tops at an estate auction. The highest priced one was a full size double wedding ring in excellent shape and was $65.00. One is a sunbonnet sue that the binding is completely worn off and some of the hand buttonhole stitching is gone but it is beautiful. I am going to repair it and use it. One is what they called a cutter quilt. Not sure what that means bus I am not going to cut it up. It is a grandmothers flower garden and several of the rings have completely disappeared but I am going to cover the whole thing with tulle. I guess I am a collector now, huh? I am going to finish the grandmother flower garden that is the top only and give it to one of my girls.
    You are definitely a collector!!! I think it is wonderful that you are rescuing the GFG quilt.
    Patricia

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by hazeljane
    A couple of years ago, when I was single, paying two mortgages and out of work, I sold most of my quilt collection on eBay. (and my dishes, and my depression glass... lucky for me I had good sense in collecting.) I have also bought a few tops. And yes, my advice would be to ask for as many pictures as you can, and for the top to be laid flat in a pic, if that's what your buying. I have one I purchased that will never quilt flat. I use ebay daily- Read the feedback, deal with people who have good feedback, and ask for details if there aren't enough. If they don't want to send more pics or details, move on.
    It is unfortunate that you had to part with your treasure; yet fortunate that you had such treasures that rescued you in a time of need! I trust the purchasers appreciate the quilts.
    Patricia

  11. #11
    Super Member MaryStoaks's Avatar
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    I love the vintage quilts and tops and have bought some on ebay, garage sales, thrift stores, antique stores. I have never paid more than $45, many were in the $10 range. I have finished all the tops I bought, quilting them on my Tin Lizzie. If the seller was known to me I always send them a picture (email) of the finished quilt. On the label I put any info I have about the top and piecer. I can't hand quilt these or I would finish them by hand. I think the makers would be glad to know their top is now a finished quilt.

  12. #12
    a regular here hazeljane's Avatar
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    On eBay, I was always very careful to give only what I knew about the quilts, and describe and photograph all the flaws. The people who bought my quilts loved them, but knew exactly what they were getting- so no bad surprises. One guy wanted a quilt, but he wanted to use it, so when he won the auction, he asked me if I would repair the damaged spots and how much I would charge. I patched it and repaired all the frayed seams and he sent me a picture of it on his sofa. It made my day.

    One thing about parting with treasures is passing them on to be loved.

  13. #13
    Power Poster dkabasketlady's Avatar
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    I regularly go to antique shops, there's always old quilts to be found. I find most of them in such bad shape and I don't want to take the time to repair them. If I run into one I really need to have then I'd buy it. For now, I have my DGM's Grandmothers Flower Garden all hand pieced and hand quilted hanging in my sewing room!! Several of my other DGM's quilts that were started by her(she passed away in 1970) and finished by my DM. I use these every day on the spare beds.

  14. #14
    Super Member CAROLJ's Avatar
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    Ebay is my favorite source for quilts, I bought a Grandmother Flower Garden, flour sacks hand pieced hand quilted, never been used. Two appliques, from the 1980s, never used, an appliqued Amish, never used, a Lonestar, never used, Flying Geese, used. A 1st place, prize winning quilt from the LA county fair about 100. A Maple Leaf under new. And about 5 or 6 more, all about 50.00 or less each. The most I have paid is about 125.00. I give them as gifts. Most were hand quilted some the stitches about 10 - 12 and most could fit a king size bed. Many were over 70 years old. I can't find good vintage quilts here as we are a warmer area. Ebay, if you wait and don't buy around Christmas, is a gold mine of quilts.

    I always ask for a close up of the stitching, and if the quilt smells. I don't care about dogs or cats, but many times the wool batting will stink. Watch feedback, and if in doubt pass. I wait and watch.

  15. #15
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    wow, wonder how many collects old quilts here on this board

  16. #16
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    anyone finding all cool vintage or antique quilts?

  17. #17

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    I love my quilts. I have been quilting for 20 years and don't have any that belong to me,but I have over 30 in my collection. My sister can't figure out why I buy them when I make them. My best buy was a cathedral window quilt I found in an antique mall. It is a king size from the 30's,and all the blocks have the same printed fabric on them. It had been stored for 30 years,I was told,and in mint condition. I got the quilt for 157.00 dollars.a I don't use it on my bed,it is very heavy,but beautiful to look at. I buy antique quilt tops all the time for low prices,haven't gotten around to quilting them yet,but intend to start soon.

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