Friday, February 13, 2015

Who is Marion Cheever Whiteside Newton?

"The Story Book Quilts of Marion Cheever Whiteside Newton" was the focus of EQ member Karen Alexander's January 2015 program at Woodman Hall.

At our January EQ meeting, EQ member and quilt historian Karen Alexander shared her research on the quilts of Marion Cheever White Newton with accompanying quilts from her collection.

Newton was a trained artist who had one leg rooted in New England and the other in Portland, Oregon, Karen shared, who turned from a successful career in art to designing some very special story quilts in the late 1940s, making an International name for herself by the 1950s.  Karen based her talk on the research presented by Naida Treadway Patterson at the 1995 annual seminar of the American Quilt Study Group. Karen has been a member of AQSG since 1981. You can read Newton's published research of that 1995 lecture by clicking here.

In this first photo, Karen has simply pinned 5 blocks she found on eBay of Newton's "Little Women" quilt pattern to a long piece of fabric.

Here are more blocks from that same auction waiting to be made into a finished quilt.

Below is a completed quilt in Karen's collection of the "Little Women" pattern.

Below is the article that appeared in Ladies Home Journal October 1950, pg 140-141

Newton's Circus Quilt appeared in the same article 
in the same LHJ issue.

Below is a well-loved example from Karen's collection.

More Research on History of Quilt Kits

Be sure to check out Rose Werner's website if you are at all interested in the history of quilt kits. Here is an example below of Newton's Circus Quilt on Werner's website. (Once you susbscribe  to Werner's website, you can dowload as many of these pages as pdf files as you like. However, they are not patterns. They just  contain the basic history that quilt reserchers and collectors' are always looking for.) 

Marion Cheever Whiteside Newton did sell quilt kits 
as well as fully completed quilts in a ddition to her patterns.

Who deson't remember the story of Pinocchio?

Below: Ladies' Home Journal - January 1958

Readers could write to the magazine and receive a full pattern for 25cents.

To see an original Newton "Pinocchio" pattern on eBay, click here. Originals are hard to come by, Karen shared, though she has found a few on eBay.  However, she also shared that she has found a source on Etsy for photo copies of a few of Newton's favorite patterns.

Brides of the World

Another Story Book Quilt made with a Newton pattern that Karen shared was the Brides of the World pattern.  Karen's version is embroidered only. Most versions of this pattern are a mixture of appliqué with some embroidery.

Some people call this patternn "Wedding Customs Around the World" but the designer, Marion Newton, called it simply "Bridal Quilt" when it appeared in "Ladies' Home Journal" magazine February 1949.  (The Bridal Quilt does contain 13 blocks of wedding customs from around the world.)

Here is another version of that same Bridal Quilt in the Quilt Index but in blue appliqué. You can see it by clicking here. It actually resides in the New England Quilt Museum. CITATION: Bridal Quilt. (Maker not recorded). 1948-1951. From New England Quilt Museum, NEQM Permanent Collection (MassQuilts Documentation). Published inThe Quilt Index, Accessed: 02/16/2013
An exhibition of 28 quilts designed by Marion Cheever Whiteside Newton from 1940 to 1965 was hung at the New England Museum in 1998. See New York Times reference here to that exhibit.  Four Newton pillows came up for auction on eBay in 2008. Click here to see the pillows. Karen noted it is the only time she has seen an example of this particular Newton pattern.

In addition to Karen Alexander's program on Story Book Quilts , we of course had our usual Show & Tell.

Edi Blomberg below

Peggy Schuld below

Darlene Detrick below


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