Grandmother’s Fan Quilt

The fan pattern is one of my favorites. I’ve completed two fan quilts and have two others in progress. I like all fans — smooth, pointy or scalloped. I purchased the fan blades for this quilt on ebay, and they were so clean, all I had to do was trim them a bit to fit my template. I was surprised to see some fabrics that I recognized from the quilt shop. It’s funny — even though they’re called “reproduction” fabrics, I hadn’t realized that they actually are exact copies of the old patterns. Too bad they only reproduce the cute ones, because a I think a few “ugly” (although I don’t find them ugly) prints add to the appeal of real vintage quilts. I’m not a complete purist about the vintage thing. Most of my quilts are made with vintage fabric, but occasionally I add a repro when I don’t have just the right color of vintage fabric for a block (rare) or I need a larger piece for borders or binding (more common).

This is a rather feminine quilt with it’s pastel colors and bow and heart quilting. Everything was done by hand, except the front side of the binding. The solid green and the binding (and 3 or 4 blades) are reproduction fabrics. Originally I made all of my quilts with muslin backs (like this one), but gradually I have made more with printed fabric. I think the printed backs are so cute, but I sort of miss being able to see the quilting pattern on the back.

Grandmother’s Fan
Martha Dellasega Gray, 2005
hand pieced, appliquéd & quilted
57″ x 77″



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