Timeless Quilts — The Value of Vintage Quilting Magazines

(Photo above is some of the vintage quilting magazines that my grandmother gave me this past Christmas)

I was born into a very LARGE extended family. My dad has 6 brothers+sisters. For as long as I remember, my grandmother has been giving all of her kids, grand kids, and great grand kids yard sale bags for Christmas. For one, she absolutely LOVES to go shopping at yard sales. For two, she has 40+ people to buy gifts for every Christmas. So, yard sale gifts are a great deal more economical than other gifts.

Every year, everyone in the family looks forward to the yard sale bags at Christmas. It is a tradition that is essential! Grandma works very hard to pick out unique items for each of her loved ones.

When quilting transformed from a craft that I tried one afternoon to a lifelong passion, my grandmother was SO excited. She is a lifelong crafter and absolutely LOVES to sew. This past Christmas, my grandmother gave me a simple gift that, to most people, would just look like old magazines. But to me — the gift was priceless. She gave me VINTAGE quilting magazines!!

McCalls Contemporary Quilting 
Circa 1975
In each magazine, there is a HUGE variety of quilts that were “new and modern” from that particular time period. In the McCalls Contemporary Quilting magazine from 1975 (pictured above), you can see some of the familiar quilt elements that are seen in many of today’s most popular quilt designs! 
Simplicity’s Quilts & Patches
Circa 1979
The quilt, pictured above, is called Snail’s Trail. I think that this could really be dressed up in today’s modern fabrics and made into a absolutely stunning quilt! 

Better Homes and Gardens
Patchwork & Quilting
Circa 1977
As this book was made at the tail end of the hippie era… it is VERY obvious by the color choices in the quilts featured! The quilt pictured above reminds me ALOT of the scrappy quilts that are seen all over the quilting world currently! 

Quilter’s Newsletter Magazine
Circa 1987
Although the contrasting colors work well in this quilt pictured in the Quilter’s Newsletter Magazine… couldn’t you just imagine this same quilt pattern made with a beautiful Amy Butler fabric line or even a Michael Miller? Goodness! 
Stitch ‘N Sew Quilts
Circa 1988
Although this quilt pattern does not show the “color schemes” of the era… I absolutely LOVE the layout! This layout was designed to have butterflies appliqued on each of the square/rectangles. However, I can completely envision a more modern applique to be put in those spots! 
I have looked through each of these quilting magazines in GREAT detail over and over and over. One of my goals in the near future is to remake these beautiful quilt designs with very modern fabrics from this decade! 
One thing I have learned from these vintage magazines that my grandmother gave me is that quilt patterns are recycled throughout the years. In most of the quilts in the books you can see exactly how these would be used as a modern “today” quilt! 
Which is just one more reason that I love quilting — it’s timeless!! 
Do you enjoy looking through old quilting magazines? What are some things you have noticed about quilts then vs. quilts now?

Leave a Reply