Timing, as they say, is everything.
I was about to go along to a morning tea where world-renowned Australian quilt historian Dr Annette Gero was speaking, so I offered to take Rae’s quilt with me.
It also meant I had extra time to fondle and admire her new ‘treasure’ :-)) Sneaky, eh? A delightfully approachable person, Annette was more than happy to take a look at Rae’s quilt. She agreed that it was probably from the late 19th or early 20th century, as Rae had been told, and said it would probably have been made as a table covering (it’s only about 5 feet square).
She pointed out some irregularly pieced blocks and said these were evidence of previous restoration attempts. According to Annette, restoring the quilt’s appearance by adding new pieces of silk is a good idea, but these days restorers would simply cover the worn original pieces, leaving evidence of the quilt’s beginnings if quilt ‘detectives’ went looking through the layers in the future.
So now we know. I hope I can bring you more photos of Rae’s beautiful quilt once she’s restored it to its former glory.