Posted on 20-12-2012
Filed Under (Announcements) by Beth Donaldson

Help protect the images and stories of Quilts and Quilt Makers with a donation dedicated to the Quilt Index.

Whether you are a Quilt Index power user or a first-time visitor to this website, please take a few minutes to watch our new video report: Virtual Threads 2012: The Quilt Index Year in Review.

The Quilt Index is a free, open access project of Matrix, Michigan State University Museum and the Quilt Alliance.

Your tax-deductible contribution supports free access to images, stories, and information about quilts and their makers, past and present. Click here to download a letter detailing more of our accomplishments over the past year; more updates on upcoming activities; and information about other ways to contribute, including eligible employee corporate matching-gift opportunities.

Donate Now to have your funds — up to $10,000 — matched by the Robert and Ardis James Foundation. Together we can fulfill this vision of an inclusive international reference resource, full participation of documentation projects, new technology and access capabilities.

Thank you for using and supporting The Quilt Index.

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Posted on 31-05-2011
Filed Under (Announcements, Documentation Projects) by sikarskie

We’re happy to announce that the Wisconsin Quilt History Project records are now being entered into the Quilt Index. To celebrate, we’ll be featuring Wisconsin quilts all this week on the QI blog.

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Posted on 26-05-2011
Filed Under (Announcements, International, Wiki) by sikarskie

Our newest addition to the QI Wiki: a page on quilt collections in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Pictured below is “Flower Power” by Philippa Naylor, Beverley, East Yorkshire, United Kingdom, 2008, National Quilt Museum

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Posted on 17-05-2011
Filed Under (Announcements, Wiki) by sikarskie

This summer, the Quilt Index Wiki is getting a facelift! If you go to, you might notice that there have been some changes to the Wiki. The main page is now more streamlined, and we hope that the new sectional organization will make the info you’re after easier to find.

We’re also in the process of creating some new wiki resources for you, including a Resources for Quilt Historians page and a page on Quilts & Social Media. We’ve also added more info to our teacher’s space, Quilts & Curriculum. So please visit the QI Wiki today and take a look!

And of course, we’d love your help in growing the wiki. If you have information on quilt documentation projects, museum collections, quilt blogs, etc. to add to the QI wiki, please contact us so we may create an account for you. Once your account has been activated, you can sign in and contribute to this growing resource.

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Posted on 27-04-2011
Filed Under (Announcements) by sikarskie

Congrats to Jamie Fingal of Orange, California! Her quilt, “Soul Sisters” (below), is the grand prize winner of the The Alliance for American Quilts annual contest.

First place goes to Cynthia St. Charles for “We are the Quilters.”
Second place goes to Annedore Neumann for “Mind the Gap!”
Third place goes to Sandra Starley for “Virginia is for Lovers”

Honorable Mention awards go to:
Nanette Fleischman
Joyce Hughes
Christine Predd
Ann Loveless
Norma Riehm
Dana Lynch
Gerry Krueger
Sheila Rauen
Amy Munson
The Broadway Gentlemen’s Quilting Auxiliary, which includes:
Christina Cocchiara, Michael Cole, Tom Flynn, Russell Gibson, Caitlin Johnson, Shahnaz Khan, Frank Klemens, Michael Michalski, Aughra Moon, Kimberly Russell, Jennifer Rice, Eric Sciotto, Sharon Scruggs, Steven Skybell, Melanie Vaughan

The 2011 context quilts can be found on the Quilt Index at:

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Posted on 20-04-2011
Filed Under (Announcements) by sikarskie

Please help improve the Quilt Index by participating in the Quilt Index User Feedback Survey 2011.

The Quilt Index project directors are seeking a few minutes of your time to help as we evaluate the value and usability of the Index. Many user suggestions in the past have been critical to how the Quilt Index and its user tools have been constructed and have resulted in direct improvements and additions.

We want to continue to guide the development of the Index in a way that addresses your needs as scholars, artists, and educators. Therefore, would you take a few moments and go to our user survey and share your views, experiences, critiques and desires for this Index? If you filled out this form last year, we would love to have information on new uses and recommendations. (or shortened link:


Marsha MacDowell, Michigan State University Museum

— On behalf of The Quilt Index team at the Alliance for American Quilts, Michigan State University Museum, and MSU’s MATRIX: Center for Humane Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences Online

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The Quilt Index launched a survey today to gather descriptions of quilt collections across the globe. The survey is part of a collaborative planning process to expand the Index, funded by the U.S. Institute for Museum and Library Services.

The survey will help develop international partnerships, as well as build on a public listing of international collections of quilts and quilt documentation.

Results will be added to a resource page listing quilt collections on the Quilt Index Wiki.

If you know about, own, or serve as custodian for quilt documentation, individual quilts, or quilt collections located outside the United States, we would love to hear from you. Click here to participate in the survey.

The Quilt Index is a partnership of MATRIX, Michigan State University Museum and The Alliance for American Quilts. The collaborative planning process also involves the International Quilt Study Center & Museum.

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Posted on 16-12-2010
Filed Under (Announcements) by sikarskie

Thousands of quilts will be at your fingertips with Quilt Index To Go.

View historic and contemporary quilts straight from the Quilt Index with detailed information about pattern names, dates, quiltmakers, and the collections that contributed them.

Quilt Index To Go brings you a unique quilt every day, and allows you to scroll endlessly through the more than 50,000 quilts in the Quilt Index contributed by more than 25 museums, libraries, and documentation projects. You can follow links to their detailed collections records on the Quilt Index for even more information.

– a quilt a day from the Quilt Index (
– browsing page to scroll endlessly through 50,000+ quilt records
– detailed quilt record information, when documented, such as:
– quilt pattern names
– quiltmaker names
– dates and/or date ranges
– collection
– links to full information on the world wide web record in the Quilt Index

Cost of the app is $.99 and proceeds go toward Quilt Index expansion and sustainability. The app is available for iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.

The Quilt Index is a partnership of the Alliance for American Quilts, Michigan State University Museum, and MATRIX: Center for Humane Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences Online at Michigan State University. App developed by MATRIX.
Quilt Index contributing partners already online or accepted for partnership include:
*Alliance for American Quilts
*American Quilt Study Group
*Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection and Lands’ End All-American Quilt Contest Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
*Connecticut Quilt Search
*Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Museum Permanent Collection
*Florida Quilt Documentation Project and Sunshine State Quilt Guild
*Founders Collection, Oh Wow! Miniature Quilt Collection, and Paul D. Pilgrim Collection, National Quilt Museum (Museum of the American Quilter’s Society)
*Hawaiian Quilt Research Project
*Heritage Quilt Project of New Jersey (Rutgers University Libraries – Special Collections and University Archives)
*Illinois Quilt Research Project quilts owned by Illinois State Museum
*Iowa Quilt Research Project (IQRP)
*Kansas Quilt Project at Kansas State Historical Society
*Kent County, Maryland, Quilt Documentation Project
*Kentucky Quilt Project, Inc.
*Louisiana Quilt Documentation of the Louisiana Regional Folklife Program at Louisiana Tech University
*Maine Quilt Heritage Project
*Mary Barton Collection (State Historical Society of Iowa)
*Merikay Waldvogel Private Collection of Ephemera
*Michigan State University Museum Collection
*Michigan Quilt Project at MSU Museum
*Minnesota Quilt Project (Minnesota Quilters’ Inc)
*The Mary Gasperik Quilts
*Mountain Heritage Center
*Nebraska Quilt Project (Lincoln Quilters Guild) at University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries
*New England Quilt Museum (MassQuilts forthcoming)
*North Carolina Quilt Documentation Project at North Carolina Museum of History
*Presidential Libraries and Museums Quilt Documentation Project
*Quilts of Tennessee (Tennessee State Library and Archives)
*Rhode Island Quilt Documentation Project (University of Rhode Island)
*Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum
*Royal Alberta Museum
*Signature Quilt Project and Pilot Public Submission
*South Africa Quilt Documentation and Research Project
*State Historical Society of Iowa
*Texas Quilt Search
*West Virginia Heritage Quilt Search, Inc.
*Western Pennsylvania Quilt Documentation Project
*Wilene Smith Private Collection of Quilt Ephemera
*Winedale Quilt Collection, Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin,
*Wisconsin Quilt History Project
*Wyoming Quilt Project, Inc.

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Posted on 14-12-2010
Filed Under (Announcements) by sikarskie

The Quilt Index,, is looking for quilt historians, quiltmakers, artists and designers, and scholars representing a wide variety of disciplines to create an essay, gallery, and/or lesson plan for publication on the Quilt Index site. With over 50,000 quilts, the QI is already an amazing resource. It is our intention that these essay, gallery, and lesson plan materials will put Quilt Index quilts in context, further adding to the richness of the QI site. If you would like to use Quilt Index quilts to author an essay, gallery, and/or lesson plan for the QI site, please contact one of the QI project managers, Mary Worrall at worrall [at] or Justine Richardson at justine.richardson [at] The deadline for proposing a topic (e.g. potholder quilts) and a medium (e.g. gallery) is March 15, 2011. Final essay, gallery, and lesson plan submissions will be due by July 1, 2011. Thank you, and we look forward to hearing from you.
The Quilt Index Staff Team

Pictured is “Tribute to Tolkein” by Sue McCarty, Roy Utah, 2009, National Quilt Museum collection.

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Posted on 10-12-2010
Filed Under (Announcements) by sikarskie

If you’ve visited the online treasure trove known as the Quilt Index ( recently, you may have noticed a new tab on the homepage. It says “Support Us.”

A free resource since its launch in 2003, the Index was created for scholars, educators, quiltmakers, and quilt-lovers worldwide. Now, users and fans of the resource will be key to its future development through their direct support.

The Index has grown rapidly and currently displays more than 50,000 documented quilts from four centuries. The bulk of these quilts are owned by museums with major quilt collections or were discovered during state documentation projects. Whether these quilts went back into an attic or basement, or sit in a storage facility somewhere, the Index allows worldwide access for anyone and everyone to all the quilts’ images and historical records at all times.

This high-tech triumph is run by several organizations in close partnership: Michigan State University Museum; MSU’s MATRIX: The Center For Humane Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences Online; and the Alliance for American Quilts, based in Asheville, North Carolina.

In the early years, the money required to build, maintain, and expand this exemplary database came mostly from grants, particularly from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. These generous funders recognized the importance of such an effort and the vision and discipline with which it was managed. Grants were used over the years not just to add more and more quilts to the archive, but also to create new tech tools for zooming in for up-close examination, comparing many quilts side by side, and expanding search capabilities.

Michigan State University has pledged to continue to provide the server space for the Index so we can all celebrate that what has been built to date is protected. But beyond the start-up and development resources, the Quilt Index must now raise funds to keep advancing the site. An enterprising team at the Quilt Index will continue to apply for grants, however, at the same time, funding is harder than ever to secure.

“Competition for arts and humanities grants is more fierce, and grants do not usually support ongoing project maintenance needs,” notes Mary Worrall, Curator, MSU Museum and one of the members of the Quilt Index Management team. “That is why we need broader support help to sustain the Quilt Index as a vibrant resource that addresses the expanding needs of users and keeps incorporating the newest technologies. Increasingly, prospective funders are also requesting that the Quilt Index team provides evidence that the users of this powerful tool respect and require it enough that they’re willing to help pay for it, much the same way listeners to public radio help keep their favorite programs funded.”

There are many ways that individuals can help the Index grow and flourish, and all funds will be tax-deductible. Any donation, however modest, will help sustain the Quilt Index, and demonstrate the breadth of its support to potential grantmakers.

What’s next? The team has an ambitious vision for the Index that is built on the ongoing evaluation they conduct as well as on their research into new opportunities. This vision pushes the bounds into pioneering, new areas: building a quilts and health research project in tandem with health educators and practitioners; developing math and quilts resources for enhancing teaching and learning; and adding quilts from more than a dozen countries outside the United States to the database. As well as international expansion, the Quilt Index team is committed to inclusion of quilts from all 50 states.

“The Quilt Index has become an amazing resource for artists, educators, scholars, and curators,” explains Marsha MacDowell, MSU professor of art and art history, curator of the MSU Museum, and one of the members of the QI leadership team. “Our vision is to keep it fresh, continually enrich the content, and to engage a wider circle of individuals who see quilts as fundamental to their work and the Index as the place to access quilt information.”

For questions about giving on line or for other ways you can help support the Quilt Index, please go to or contact Annie James, MSU Museum Development Officer at

Quilt made in the Badaling District, outside Beijing China. c1996. Collection of Michigan State University Museum.

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