• Cumbrian Frame Quilt
  • Cot Quilt

Wedding and christening gowns are just two of the celebratory items that will be included in the Quilt Museum’s main exhibition opening on Saturday 7 May.

In years past, quilts were often made to mark significant milestones in life such as birth, marriage and anniversaries. The same techniques used in these quilts, namely patchwork and quilting, were also used in costume

The Quilt Museum’s forthcoming exhibition, ‘Celebrations’, focuses on these happy events and comes at a time when Royal weddings are very much in the news.

Exhibits will include a corded silk grosgrain wedding dress and jacket made by a Dutch woman for her English niece in 1954 and a quilted wedding gown made by the well known North Country quilter Amy Emms for her daughter in 1957. The latter item is on loan from Mrs Olive Gregson and Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens, where it is on permanent display. Other items include a wedding quilt of printed cottons made in Cumbria in 1899; several cot quilts made for new born babies and a quilt made to commemorate Queen Victoria’s golden jubilee in 1887. Christening gowns on show will include a dress made in 1980 by Edna Davies in Tyne and Wear, and a more elaborate pink and white dress made by the prize-winning contemporary quilter Jacquie Harvey. It was inspired by the Ayrshire needlework used on christening gowns in the 19th century.


Above: Cumbrian Frame Quilt, 1899. Made by Bertha Mitchell. The Quilters' Guild Collection

Below: Squares Cot Quilt, 1850-1890. Made by Mary Dennis-Cann or daughter. The Quilters' Guild Collection