Thursday, June 8, 2017

Quilted Petticoat Research

For the upcoming petticoat-quilting weekend (ie, test-driving Elise's new quilting frame)

My inspiration piece is a c.1835-1860 cotton print petticoat from the collection of Old Sturbridge Village: (My inspiration experience is the really cold weather at Santa Train last December.)

Quilted petticoat c.1835-1860, made from stripe-print cotton. Old Sturbridge Village 26.35.31
Quilted petticoat, c. 1835-1860 from
Old Sturbridge Village (object 26.35.31).
Both this striped petticoat and another in their collection (#26.35.30, a wool twill petticoat c.1840) are quilted in horizontal lines, spaced closely together near the hem and further apart near the waist. From the given measurements (and taking proportions from the picture), I think this petticoat has a hem around 90" in circumference; it is 36.5" long.

I'm having trouble deciding between following the simple lines, or trying a more ambitious quilting pattern, like this one from the Henry Ford Museum done in overlapping waves (they also have a fun silk petticoat with much clearer quilting lines).

Perhaps a diamond pattern would make a nice compromise between an easy quilting pattern and a fun one?
Diamond-quilted white cotton petticoat c.1860-1870, from The Met.
Cotton petticoat with diamond quilting,
c.1860-1870, in The Met.

While the OSV petticoats have set waistbands and close with ties, the Met has about a dozen quilted pettis which appear to use drawstrings:

Cotton print quilted petticoat, early 19th century, from The Met.
Early 19th century quilted petticoat in The Met.
Maybe the drawstring is a French variation?


They also have some lovely silk quilted petticoats, made very full.  From some references in my casual readings, I suspect these silk petticoat are meant as an outermost under-layer, to support a delicate skirt, as opposed to the narrower quilted pettis worn near the body for warmth.

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