Men Who Quilt

 This is a quilt that was made by our son from the fabric of several pairs of DH’s father’s pants.  It holds a very dear and special place in DH’s heart since it was made about 2 years afther his father’s death.

   This is another star pattern quilt that was made for me by Jim for Christmas one year.  This edging pattern looks wonderful on the bed as it makes a pattern along the edges and then hangs with the solid color. 

I have these quilts hanging on a quilt rack in my living room and today it hit me that men of today are rediscovering the joys of handwork that men of the 19th century took for granted. Several months ago Linda B. of Chloe’s Place did a series of posts on Woggas.. the utilitarian quilts men made while traveling in the outback or working the farms and ranches of Australia.  I think today we forget that men in the 19th century and earlier had to have quite a hand with a needle.  Soldiers carried sewing kits and repaired their own clothes around the fires at night. Have a look at these Singer Sewing Machine ads..  I find it so interesting that today this holds true in many more aspects than one would consider. 

When I did a search re: men who quilt, I was really surprised with what I found.  Real Men Do Quilt is a great site with quilts by Warren Whaley, Jim Niles, Russell Lord, and Mike Beardsly.  Do have a look at the wonderful quilts shown on these pages.

It seems this is not a totally new phenomenon.  The New York Times Art Review has a wonderful article by Holland Cotter (May 29, 1998).  This is an excerpt: 

“The participation of men in ”women’s work” like quilting has only been glancingly acknowledged in scholarship, though this is beginning to change. Thanks in large part to the women’s movement of the 1970’s, once-firm hierarchical separations between fine art and crafts have relaxed. And increased attention both to non-Western cultures and identity politics in the 90’s has produced new models for what constitutes gender-specific art.

Given this context, it makes sense that the bulk of the Anacostia show is made up of contemporary artists. But Ms. Fry has given their work a solid and resonant historical grounding through the presence of quilts created more than a century ago.

9 thoughts on “Men Who Quilt

  1. Hi Linda,
    I belong to a guild quilting group of about 200 ladies , and there is one man among that lot…this lovely ederly man also quilts and always wears a shirt that he has appliqued with birds etc.
    Julia

  2. Hi,
    I am a guy who quilts and would love to find other men who quilt for networking and support. My grandmothers had a great tradition of quilting which has been passed down to my mother and now she is teaching me.
    Thanks.

  3. Hi I am a man ,66 years old have quilted for 40 years and love it.I have done over a hundred quilts hope I can do a hundred more .

  4. I am an old guy who quilts….and most of it is from old clothes of the family….some really fantastic colors and shapes…..like to do the grandma flower garden…all by hand…in fact all my quilts are by hand….thousands and thousands of blocks….learned this craft when a kid…..till later….I live in norther California…..leo

  5. I’m a male grad student working on a story quilt for my thesis. My mom was always making quilts while I was growing up so I guess it’s in my blood. I love comics and I want to built a story quilt in comic format that retells a traditional American ghost story or murder ballad.

    I’m also a bit of a tech geek, so I’m going to try to embed some technology into the quilt so viewers can interact with it.

    If you’re interested in hearing more about this or if you want to give me feedback, check out my blog at http://dwillig.wordpress.com/

  6. Pingback: Dan Willig… Thesis on Quilting « Fabric Follies Two

  7. I am a middle-aged man who has been quilting for about 20 years. I am looking to connect with other male quilters on the web. Is there a site for men who quilt?

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