Amish Quilt Designs
The Quilt Design Royalty? Lone Star, Double Wedding Ring, Log Cabin, Nine Patch, Ocean Wave. Newer entries into the quilt world? Spinning Star, Country Love, Light in the Valley ©. Shop on, to your heart's content! There's just something about a quilt...
The Amish Shadow is very rare here in Pennsylvania; it's almost unknown entirely. While we're unsure of its origins, it does appear to be slightly more popular in the Midwest. It is also known as Roman Stripe. It's created by making two halves of a block and placing them on the bias. One half is almost always black, or at least a solid fabric. The other half is typified by bright or vivid ribbons of color. Frequently these strips are also solid color that contrasts nicely with the black. However, sometimes fabric can be used.
The Bachelor's Puzzle is very rare; it comes in two styles, and this sinewy one is almost unknown entirely. While we're unsure of its origins, it seems to appear in the Midwest in the 1920's or 30's.
The Basket design first came into use sometime around 1790. Quilters like to use it because they can cut small pieces from their scraps and still have a beautiful piece of work. This is truly one of the most traditional Amish quilt designs.
The Bear's Paw is another classic design, another of the block style. While no one is certain when it was first created, it has been in use since at least the 1890's.
The Boston Commons quilt design was inspired by the Amish Sunshine & Shadow and English Trip Around the World designs. Instead of taking contrasting bands of color in block form and putting it into a diamond figure, this instead presents it in an elogated rectangular fashion.
The Bow Tie design is very rare; it is known to be in use by 1898, but perhaps may have been in use as early as 1875. Early examples came from areas as diverse as Nebraska and possibly Connecticut.
Like many of its siblings, the Broken Star is a variation of the Lone Star design. In this case, a lone star is placed inside of a curved set of similar diamond shape blocks that encircle it and form half-stars. This is a very popular quilt design in Pennsylvania.
The Center Diamond is one of the oldest and most beloved of all Amish quilts. It is even the inspiration for the Almost Amish logo! The piecing is geometric and bold, yet sparse. Yet this plain framework sets the stage for a riot of very detailed quilting. A masterpiece.
Crocus Star is an extremely rare design- so rare, in fact, that we've tried to trace its origins without success. One thing we do know- it features a striking geometric design.
We haven't had any success in tracking the history of this quilt. Use of the star motif to in quilt-making dates back to the mid-seventeenth century, at least. This particular use of the star takes the Broken Star variation and takes it a step further. Instead of taking the blank spaces and quilting a design inside of them, more diamonds or half-diamonds are created. It makes a great play of dark and light colors!
This treatment is obviously an outgrowth of the classic Double Wedding Ring. The first we've been able to trace it is very recently, first designed by Judy Niemeyer in 1996.
While Dresden Plate has its origins in a design dating to 1785, it wasn’t really well known in the US until the 1920’s. The name, adopted at that time, took inspiration from Victorian-era porcelain china for which the German city of Dresden was famous.
The Evening Star is one of the quilt designs purported to be created and used on the Underground Railroad during the American Civil War. Some scholars say that is not documented, but who are we to question? Anyway, there are two related designs called Evening Star, and both came into use sometime between 1840-1870.
The design is really quite rare around Pennsylvania. We are proud to offer it!
This design lies before you like a giant opening bloom. In these parts, we refer to it as "Giant Dahlia"; a regular Dahlia quilt in Lancaster County is typified by pleating fabric to resemble a petal. So in most other areas, people would just refer to it as a Dahlia quilt.
The Nine Patch block design was first introduced right around the year 1800. Somewhere along the line, appliquéd hearts were added, creating a much beloved design.
Hearts All Around is a variation of Pennsylvanians call the Ocean Wave design. We've seen completely different designs also called Ocean Wave, but "ours" is so evocative of the sea, we'll keep the name! We'll also keep the Hearts All Around; putting designs in a diamond design and adding hearts is always a good idea!
Wholecloth quilts, known in Pennsylvania Dutch Country as Heirloom quilts, are bed coverings that are known for their single fabric. The design lies in the quilting, not in the piecing of contrasting fabrics. The qiuilting should be extensive and well done, in even, very fine stitches.
Whether Single, Double or Triple, the Irish Chain is typified by intersecting lines, usually on the bias, usually at 90-degree angles. The design pre-dates its name. The oldest version we've been able to find dates all the way back to 1786, but the name didn't come into use until the early 1800's. It may have originated in Ireland; it may have originated here in America. Either way, we think it's a beautiful legacy!
This design owes its name to a famous passage in the book Genesis of the Bible. There's a lot going on with the juxtaposition of upright ninety degree lattice angles and forty-five degree "ladders," but with the right fabrics and artisanship, the result is clearly dynamite!
We first became aware of Light in the Valley © from an Amish friend. She introduced us to the Old Order Amish woman who sold the quilts and copyrighted them. We eagerly started carrying them on our website. When she retired, she contacted us and asked us if we were interested in the copyright. It took us about one second to say yes!
The classic Log Cabin design uses rectangular strips at right angles to form a panel. This variation uses color and form to create a diamond design. One of our best sellers!
One of the classics! First known in England as the "Mathematical Star," this eight pointed star is known to be in use as early as 1815. Obviously Texas donated its namesake for this iteration.
The Mariner's Compass design pretty much describes itself. The compass portion should feature at least 16 points; ours feature 32. Perhaps not surprisingly, the Mariner's Compass design is one of the oldest known to quilts: it was known to be in use in England by 1726.
The name Ocean Waves first referred to a block design, in use by 1875. We don't know when this undulating, curvy design first came into being, but there's no denying that they are very popular in Lancaster County.
The Postage Stamp was probably conceived as a means to use leftover scraps, and we plead guilty! The savings we realize by not having to buy much fabric are passed onto you in terms of the overall price. Besides, scrapper's quilts are prized by some collectors.
This more contemporary design is an illusion of eight square blocks, creating an eight point star by "spinning"...
The Irish Chain quilt design has been in use since 1806, and possibly earlier. It may be the first use of a block design in quilting. It is a favorite in Lancaster County.
This design is most closely identified with the Old Order Amish settlement in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Some believe that it is an outgrowth of the original Center Diamond, which makes perfect sense. But what patchwork! All those little squares are first sewn together before the batting and back area attached and then the piece is quilted.
The Broken Star is a variation of one of the most classic quilt designs: the Lone Star. The Lone Star is known to have been in use by 1815, but we've not been able to discover when the Broken Star variation came into being. Then we saw appliquéd Tulips added to the Broken Star at an auction, and what a striking difference they make! Appliquéd flowers such as the Carolina Lily (which is very similar to the Tulip) were already in use by 1837.
The Amish are known far and wide for producing quilts that are as gorgeous as they are durable, and we at Almost Amish are proud to showcase the handmade craftsmanship that goes into each and every one. Our line of Amish-produced quilts come in a variety of stunning, classic designs, many of which have been perfected over hundreds of years by generations of Amish quilters. These designs are bright, stoic, simple, complex, charming, and handsome. When you purchase a quilt from Almost Amish, you’re not just getting something pretty and warm to snuggle up in as you sit by the fireplace; you’re getting a one-of-a-kind piece of Americana artwork with centuries of tradition in every stitch.
Amish Craftsmanship Design
That marriage between artistry and craftsmanship is perhaps no more evident than in the design of our Amish Shadow Queen Quilt, a triumph of contrast achieved with over 78,000 individual, painstaking stitches. Those who believe Amish designs to be inherently dowdy and dull will be astonished by the balance achieved between the bright streaks of color and the counterbalance of black.
There are, of course, more classic designs available to those who wish to add a bit of understated elegance to their home. Our Boston Commons Queen Quilt features a variety of muted hues, making it the perfect addition to a stately bedroom or den. What’s more, its quilt top and backing are made of 100% cotton, which means that it’s just as good at being warm and cozy as it is at tying together a room.
No design we offer, however, may say "warm and cozy" quite as well as our Heart and Nine design. Available both as an Amish quilt and as a wall hanging, just looking at the Heart and Nine quilt brings back memories of how nice it felt to wear something grandma made special for you; not only because it was well made, but because you could tell that there was love and care put into every stitch. That’s the feeling that we hope to inspire in every customer who makes one of our handcrafted quilts their own.
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Amish Quilt Design Considerations
The Amish artisans we work with create quilts for full beds, double beds, queen sized beds, and king sized beds. Additionally, there are plenty of wall hanging Amish quilts and throw quilts. Picking the right size for where you intend to display your quilt is important!
No one wants an Amish quilt design that clashes with the rest of the colors of their room. Fortunately, with our selection of Amish quilt designs, you're sure to find one that complements your decor.
The Design Itself
As with all of the handcrafted quilts we offer, each quilt is entirely unique, but there are certain elements of each design that appeals to different people. Choose one that fits your style.