The Cottage Orné Quilt

The Cottage Orné Quilt
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Tuesday, 28 June 2011

A very famous Welsh Folk Art quilt

This coverlet created in 1842 by James Williams, a Wrexham tailor was featured in our book MAKING WELSH QUILTS.

It is such a famous piece that I wasn't certain about featuring it yet again and of course it is not a quilt but a coverlet.  It is also a complete one-off and unlike any other Welsh quilt that I know of. However, my friend Philip said that no book on Welsh quilts would be complete without it - it must go in he said and he was of course right.

We were very fortunate that we were allowed to exhibit it in our gallery of Welsh quilts at the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham in 2007 and it was also on show last year at the V&A Exhibition.  When we Welsh "girls" stood in front of it at the exhibition we felt so proud, we wanted to shout out to everyone that it was WELSH as well as fabulous.

In my opinion it is the best folk art quilt ever!  Every time I study it, I marvel at the workmanship, the dedication of its maker and the time it took to make and where did he start?  Wouldn't it be wonderful if we knew how he went about it because I certainly can't work it out!


fabriquefantastique said...

Indeed, its an extraordinary piece.

Pauline said...

Wow, I'd love to see that up close!

liz said...

That is an amazing work of art. It always stops me in my tracks when I see it, so don't worry about showing it again.

Susan Briscoe said...

Amazing, and I always love to see it, either as a photo or in real life (at the V & A). I especially like the inclusion of the Chirk Aquaduct. Do we know where on Wrexham's High Street James Williams had his shop? I've often wondered, living close by.

Elen Phillips said...

Hi I'm Elen - the Curator of Costume & Textiles at St Fagans: National History Museum and also a native of Wrexham. James Williams was based at 8 College Street - near the Parish Church.

I'm glad to hear that you all love the coverlet - it's one of my favourite objects from the collection.

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