Reproduction star by Becky Brown
featuring a pillar print.
Vintage Pillar Print with a yellow ground
The early nineteenth-century mania for stripes created a vogue for a pattern variation that textile historians today call pillar prints. Design echoes the classical architecture of ancient Greece and Rome with stripes assuming the form of fluted, rounded columns interrupted by ornate capitals and garlands of flowers.
Blue blotch ground behind a pillar print
Other names for the designs are “architectural prints” or "columnar prints."
Pillar prints were a specialty of England's textile mills. The French, the Dutch, and the Swiss had no interest in printing or using them. A major market was Americans who were styling their new nation on the ideals of ancient Greece.
Two pillar prints for the American market
Americans infatuated with all forms of classical design favored large-scale pillar print between 1800 and 1840. The designs were not only printed in full-chintz colors but as monochrome toiles.
Early-19th-century quilt from an ad in The Clarion,
Summer, 1989. Pillar print in the border.
Florence McConnell's reproduction of the Borden Family Quilt at the
New England Quilt Museum below.
Florence interpreted the original at smaller scale for the
American Quilt Study Group's Star Study, 2010.
Detail of Florence's with repro pillar print.
Another quilt with the same pillar print border (?) from the
New England Quilt Museum.
Pillar prints seem to have been quite popular with New England quilters in the 1810-1840 years.
Sarah's Nine Patch reproduction,
using the copy of the antique print below.
"I believe [this] one ... is actually by Lisa DeBee Shiller for Timeless Treasures"
The Shiller Pillar?
NOT Colossal Columns by Kathy Hall from the American Folk Art Museum
Bettina's repro star
captures the out-of-scale look that
we often see in early patchwork.
I found this piece of the same print in purple
to make a vivid star.
Source for this antique medallion?
The center star is pieced of pillar print fragments
Reminding you that even if you don't want to feature a particular print you can include scraps to create an authentic look.
Lately Arrived from London
I've reproduced several pillar prints over the years.
Above and below, two by Nancy Gere
Terry Thompson and I did this reproduction in Coral Gardens.
It's the same print that's in this detail
Chintz quilt with pillar print border.
Collection of the Spencer Museum of Art.
What to Do With Your Stack of Stars?
Use pillar prints for the setting blocks and border with a chintz.
Pillar Prints set in every direction in an early quilt top from the collection of
Old Sturbridge Village
Historic New England has a similar quilt:
Another star and pillar from the Crane House on
Barbara Schaffer's blog
Sumptuous Stars by Barb Vedderwww.funwithbarb.com
A chintz pillar print for the border.
Other chintz border ideas...
(A review of the last few weeks)
Dark ground chintz (vintage quilt from William Bunch Auctions)
Or a light ground as in this Broderie Perse Quilt by Fannie E Wright & Eliza Bacon
A Fancy machine ground
Quilt from Historic Deerfield Museum
A blue blotch ground
From collection of Marilyn Woodin
A border stripe
One More Thing About Pillar Prints
The term "pillar print" seems to be rather recent, a mid-twentieth-century description. The earliest reference I have found to fabric by searching Google's digitized books in a 1956 British publication.
The term is more commonly used to describe Japanese wood blocks on paper, in which a pillar print (hashira-ye) is a long, narrow print meant to hang from a wooden pillar in a house.
Read more about pillar prints at a post here:
See Laura Syler's Pinterest page