On Sunday a group of ladies from the shop had a lovely day visiting the V&A Quilts in Brisbane. My DH was in charge of getting us to and from the gallery - very smoothly I must say. It is always nice not to have to worry about driving and parking.
The most popular quilt according to the chatter on the way home was the Chapman Coverlet - which for a lot of us has ended up on our quilt wish list. It is absolutely gorgeous and to not only see the front but also the back revealing papers and tacking still in place was such a delight. Made around 1829 the coverlet celebrates the Duke of Wellington's victory at Vittoria, Spain in 1813. Underneath this panel is an embroidered script which our guide told us refers to the embalming of the wife. On further reading of "Quilts 1700-2010" it is revealed that the epitaph was first written for Martin Van Butchell, who had his wife Mary embalmed after her death and placed in a glass case. The maker of the coverlet may not have know this story, though how it relates to the commemorative battle panel is interesting. Anyway all of that aside the quilt was still the favourite of the group.
The other favourite quilt from the exhibition was the Sundial Quilt dated 1797. It is truly a credit to the makers skill and workmanship that these amazing quilts are able to be enjoyed and appreciated by quiltmakers today. It is not only a reflection of what happened inside the household but also what happened outside in the garden and grounds. For some this was the quilt that made it to their bucket list. Sadly the maker is unknown, which is a timely reminder for us all to take the time to label our quilts.
Whilst walking through the exhibition our guide pointed to a bedcover made between 1800-40 and told us that whilst it was being installed the team heard a rip. Once the exhibition has finished it will be rested and stored and it is very unlikely that it will ever be exhibited again.
The other quilt that will be taking a long rest after the exhibition is the Rajah
Quilt. A friend who had been through the exhibition earlier in the month relayed this story told by their guide - the quilt is usually only on display in quarters, it has rarely been exhibited in full and never for such a long period of time. Once the exhibition is finished in September it will be rested and it is expected to be quite some time before it is exhibited again. How blessed are we to see the exquisite treasures here on our doorstep.
If you haven't been to the exhibition a bus load of us can highly recommend that you do. You may be told yet another little treasure of information about a quilt that will make your visit just as memorable as ours.
The images are courtesy of the internet - I wasn't a naughty girl - photos are not allowed in the exhibition.