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Inspired by Medallion Quilts

As I design quilts I draw a lot from the past.  Quilters from yesteryear are a great resource.  Isn’t it wonderful that we can pick and choose from all those that came before and make something totally are own?  Recently I’ve had an interest in Medallion quilts.  A lot of that interest was inspired by this quilt by Jen Kingwell.

By Gone Aussie Quilting

So I did a little research.  Medallion quilts were a favorite style from 1780-1800.  They often used a panel as a center.  Fabric manufactures printed fabric specifically for this as well as fabric that would work for borders.  Quilters would often have the same center then create their own borders to make the quilt their own.

Applique centers became popular in the late 1700’s.  Quilters often cut out shapes from printed fabric for their applique.

Hexie Center

Later pieced centers became popular.  Hexagon centers beginning in 1817

 Star Center

Centers featuring a pieced star started around 1830.

Hope all this information as made you excited to make a medallion quilt as I am.  Would you be willing to join me in a sew along?  We’ll change things up a bit from our sister quilters of yesteryear.  Instead of having the same center I thought we could each make our own center.  Choose your favorite method, applique or pieced.  You will want to have a 24″ center.  Or use my center.  It can be found in the Mountain Home pattern.  Along with all the borders.

Medallion Quilt Along


  • cityquilter grace says:

    great post with gorgeous photos…i am working on jen kingwell's "midnight at the oasis" using kaffe fabrics….yours is pretty!

  • Georgia says:

    Eeeekkkk! I need to get up my nerve to participate in this medallion quilt along. Maybe??? I love all of your examples.

  • kt says:

    I love medallion quilts–count me in!! Now to figure out what to make for the center….so fun–thank you!!

  • Deonn @ Quiltscapes says:

    Emily, this sounds like a blast! I think these types of quilts are so attractive. I've participated in something like this with less than stellar results – a Round Robin where you pass along your center to others to add the borders for you. I guess I have a certain standard – either that, or it's my old age showing!!

  • Jane Holbrook says:

    Okey Dokey! I am in, just added your button and I am already working on a medallion so this is perfect. Thanks for being my muse.

  • Karen - Quilts...etc. says:

    love all of them that you showed, I am working on two of them although I admit to taking a longer break than I should be from both of them.

  • Needled Mom says:

    It will be fun to watch these progress through the months. I'd join in, but my goal is to finish projects this year.

  • Myra @ Busy Hands Quilts says:

    This looks so fun! Is the center panel 24” when finished in the quilt?

  • em's scrapbag says:

    Yes, Mine is 22" then I added the 1" border around. For the rest of the instructions you will want your center to measure 24 1/2" so it finishes at 24" Let me know if you have further questions.

  • Wendy Caton Reed says:

    Oh no, you are killing me! Medallion quilts are my favorite, but I have taken on way too many things right now so I will have to be content to watch you all. Have fun!

  • Sylvia says:

    I love this! I will join in!

  • Myra @ Busy Hands Quilts says:

    A note here for those who plan to participate – If you are looking for a center piece for your medallion quilt that measures 24.5" unfinished, the center of the Glorious Dawn 2018 BOM quilt kit is 24.5" in the Throw size. If you are a Bluprint member or have purchased the quilt kit, you'll have access to it.

  • Unknown says:

    Can't work out hiw to join

  • Rebecca Grace says:

    I've had medallions on my mind lately, too, Em! I've seen a couple of Sarah Fielke's medallion applique patterns that I would love to start playing with (like Down the Rabbit Hole!! Giant Bunny Rabbit Love!!) but I have a few other quilts that need to be finished (and some that need to be started AND finished) before I can start a new medallion project. So I will be cheering you on with your project from the sidelines, and storing inspiration away for the future!

  • Cathy says:

    Thanks for the little lesson on Medallion quilts. I never know what to add for borders so don't make them. Hmmmm…maybe I should participate in a Medallion Quilt Along and maybe learn something!

    And I love that Medallion with the Star Center.

  • Diane says:

    I do love medallion quilts and I would totally jump in if I wasn't already doing one (that I somehow got suckered into designing and writing!) LOL
    It'll be fun to see this progress!!

  • Selvage Quilter says:

    Thanks for sharing the pic of my quilt, "Star Center." A dear friend saw your post and told me about it. I love this collection. Seeing your post makes me want to drop everything and make a new medallion quilt. My quilt in your post was made from 1" wide strips (1/2" finished). So maybe I'll rethink that part, haha. Happy new year, Em.

  • Selvage Quilter says:

    Thanks, Cathy. I had a blast making the Star Center quilt. As for borders, just make what you like. Start making a strip for the border. If it doesn't fit, tweak it by making the seam allowances bigger until it fits. Or if it's too small, just add on. This is Gwen Marston's "liberated quiltmaking" perspective. It's so much fun.
    Happy quilting.

  • mangozz says:

    I've never made a medallion quilt before, so this is very tempting. I'm just trying to finish up the last border for the Good Fortune mystery quilt. It has 4 pieced borders, so you could almost consider it a medallion quilt!

  • Anita SS says:

    Count me in, my center is ready to go.

  • Unknown says:

    It's the second week in June. I just found your QAL. I'm going to participate. Looks like great fun!

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