Quilting Styles Descriptions


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Album Quilt


Album quilts originated in the 1800's. These quilts are made up of different blocks made by a group of friends to present as a special friendship or memory quilt or for a special occasion. These blocks often represented images, meaningful to the recipient.

The makers sign the center of their block and add a poem, line or notation.

The appliqué versions of these are known as Baltimore Album Quilts.

Album quilts can also include pieced blocks that are the same, using different fabrics. The center square is where it is signed.

This can be a nice wedding gift, with pieced blocks being left out for guests to sign.

These quilts are also known as Friendship or Signature quilts.


Amish Quilt

Amish quilts originated in the 1700's by Amish settlers in Pennsylvania.

These quilts are made with vivid solid colour fabric in deep jewel tones (red, purple, blue, green) and black. The quilt designs are of large, very simple geometric shapes (squares, rectangles, triangles & diamonds).

The quilting is intricate as the solid fabric showcases the stitches.


Baltimore Album Quilt

Baltimore Album Style Quilt


These date back to the mid 1800's in Baltimore, Maryland.

These album quilts were made using detailed pictorial appliqué blocks with flora, baskets, wreaths, scenic and historic motifs.

Traditionally made with white backgrounds and red and green fabrics.

Broderie Perse was also used.

In the tradition of album quilts, signatures, poems and dates were noted on the block.

These are also known as presentation quilts.


Cathedral Window Quilt

Popular in North America in the 1930's, these quilts are made using a folded patchwork technique.

A square is folded and blind-stitched in corves to form windows.

A variation is known as The Secret Garden.



Celtic Quilt These quilts use bias strips, appliquéd in a Celtic design.

The basic shapes used are spirals, diamonds, interlace, zigzags and keys.


Charm Quilt

Workshop + Pattern

These quilts started in the Victorian era, growing from the hobby of collecting one-of-a-kind buttons on strings, call both charm and friendship strings.

The quilter's of the day took this idea, collecting fabrics and making one patch quilts. Each patch made with a different fabric. 

Some of the lore that goes along with these collections include:

  • If a young lady collected 999 different buttons or fabrics, the 1000th would be brought to her by her one true love.
  • Sometimes mothers made a charm quilt, duplicating one fabric. Looking for the duplicate would entertain a sick child.

This type of quilt is great if you love to collect fabric. A 6" square of each would be plenty. Some good sources for collecting these 6" charm squares are your friends, guild charm baskets, magazine ads and our own Charm Square Swap

Classic Quilts


This is large class of quilt. The only criteria is a quilt made from a traditional block (e.g. Log Cabin, Dresden Plate, Jacob's Ladder, Nine-Patch, etc.).
Contemporary Quilt


Any types of quilt not using traditional blocks as in Classic Quilts.

The variety and creativity is amazing!

Crazy Quilt

This quilt technique flourished in the Victorian era. Special fabrics like velvet, silk, satin, taffeta, brocade, wool, etc. were used in the crazy patch.

Embellishments with family keepsakes, lace, beads, buttons, ribbon and of course embroidery. There is no such thing as too much detail!


Hawaiian Quilt Hawaiian quilters' have their own long history of quilt making. Influenced by folk art, their basic appliqué designs reflect elements in their nature, history and surroundings.

The single layer, paper cut design covers the whole quilt top. It is achieved by folding the fabric in four or eight and cutting out the design. It is a lot like snowflakes.

It is then basted and appliquéd to the background fabric.


Medallion Quilt



This style of quilt making is one of the earliest.

The quilt is identified by the large central motif, surrounded by blocks and borders that enhance the center.

The design in the center is usually set straight or on-point with corner units.

Round Robin quilts are based on this style.

Miniature Quilts



These mini quilts are done in traditional block designs, scaled down to a small size.

The usual measurements for the blocks is 4" or smaller with the full quilt size being no larger than 24". Dollhouse miniatures should be 1:12.

These quilts make nice wallhangings.

This style is a great way to play with different quilt patterns, without the time and fabric the larger version would be.


One Patch Quilt This quilt is made with a single shape patch, repeated throughout the quilt.

Traditional shapes include apple core, square, rectangle, half-square triangle, hexagon, equilateral triangle, diamond & clamshell.

Light and dark fabrics are alternated for a contrasting random design or patches are laid out before sewing for a planned design.

Charm quilts are one patch quilts made with no fabric being used more than once.


Picture/Photo Quilt



These quilts can come in any shape or size...with the photographs, on the quilt, as the common thread.

There are several techniques to achieve the photo fabric.

You can print photographs, using your computer, on treated fabric.

There is also photo transfer sheets (various brands). You print or copy the photographs, onto the paper. With a very hot iron, you can press these images onto cotton fabric.

Rag Quilt This type of quilt sews the patches with the raw edges out. After the quilt is complete, it is washed. The frayed edges of the patches, that occurs, makes a fuzzy detailing.


Sampler Quilt



These quilts are made of different block patterns. Similar coloured fabrics and borders help the design become a whole design.

Sampler quilts are usually taught as a beginner class because the variety of piecing techniques, the different blocks require, enables the student to learn basic quilting techniques used in all quilt making. All with one project.

Scrap Quilt


This quilt can be any quilt pattern made with dozens of different fabrics.

It is a great way to use a lot of smaller scrap cuttings of fabric.

You can mix all the fabrics or use a planned colour scheme.

Seminole Quilt This quilt style originates from the late 1800's from the Seminole Indians of Florida.

The technique uses strip sets of usually solid fabric. They are cut down and set back together by staggering the block, creating a band of the design.


Stained Glass Quilt These smaller quilts are made to look like stained glass. Hand dyed fabrics and bias binding, as your leading, can turn a stained glass pattern into a quilt pattern.


Wagga Wagga Quilt This historic Australian quilt style was originally done by men (Wagga Rugs) by sewing grain sacks together. The women also made their versions with well washed sugar bags.

Later, this quilt was adapted to use woolen suiting samples. 

These quilts can have the look of contemporary art.



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