This is an unfinished hexagons patchwork made in the Llanarth area of West Wales, probably in the second quarter of the 19th century. It is not known exactly who made the patchwork, but the maker was related to David (1826 – 1903) and Grace Davies (1828 – 1901), who lived in Llanarth. David was the registrar (known as a Relieving Officer) at Llanarth.
This piece is particularly interesting because it holds so many good examples of fabrics dating from 1810 – 1830. These are little faded, as the work was never finished and so packed away for decades. Most of the papers and the tacking holding them in place are also still there. All the stitching is by hand. One of the papers is dated September 27 1782 – this is written in ink. Another paper shows a postmark dated 1832.
The background is made up of white dimity – a striped weave fabric. Amongst the other hexagons are examples of fabrics including Lane’s Net design, punch engraving, honeycomb ground, stipple engraving, eccentric engraving, lapis printing, and ombre or rainbow style.
The patchwork was a very useful study resource for The Quilt Detectives lottery funded project in 2009, when Dr Philip Sykas, Research Associate at Manchester Metropolitan University, conducted workshops in printed textiles at The Minerva Arts Centre.