Friday, August 20, 2010

"The Quilts of Gee's Bend"

 have been an inspiration to me since I first discovered them through a book that I purchased a few years ago called "The Quilts of Gees Bend".  I have been so inspired by all the improvisation used in the quilts seen in this book; mostly because this is my way of  designing my own art quilts.  About three years ago I displayed some quilts that I made in honor of these women to exhibit at the library where I first saw this book.  I titled the exhibit "Ode to Gees Bend".
For over 100 years a group of women created works of art without even knowing it.  These women were from a rural black community in Alabama.  Their quilts date back to the mid-1920's.  The quilts represent only a portion of the quilts made by African-American women during this time, and span three or four generations.  The quilts were bold and colorful improvisations, which were made of work clothes, fabric samples, cotton sacks, denim, corduroy and who know what else; representing in my opinion fine art.  I am pleased to have met some of these women and their works through the pages of this book.  The quilts and tops I am showcasing in this blog were inspired by these women and their quilts.  By no means are my quilts meant to be copies of the quilts you will see within the pages of the book.  It should also be noted that there is a vast difference in the sizes; as their quilts were meant to keep the body warm on any given cold and wintry night.   My most favorite has been the quilt on the cover of the book, which was made of denim, corduroy, synthetic blends (britches legs with pockets) as noted in the book.  Two of the quilts I am showing were inspired by the quilts on pages 52, and 10.


  1. Equisito! My daughter gave me the book, "Gee's Bend, The Women and Their Quilts", several Christmas' ago. I was overwhelmed by what these ladies had done. You have honored them very well.

  2. Hi Carol, do you hang them prominently in your home? They are a fitting tribute. The top one is my favorite of the 3 you've shared, followed by the 2nd one. I've wanted to make a blue jean quilt for some time now but just haven't made it a priority.