The first information I can find on doll quilts in America is in The New England Archives about 1760. Doll Quilts were made in other countries long before. The information has been gleaned from diaries, journals and household inventories Making doll quilts was an early tradition in America.
There are not many examples of early doll or baby quilts. The infant mortality rate was high and these small quilts were used as shrouds in which to bury the infants.
Sewing was a very important skill and when little girls were about three years old they were taught to sew. Many of these little girls made quilts for their dolls as it was a wonderful way to teach them to choose fabric, cut, and stitch. Fabric being scarce and very valuable in early America, and none was wasted. Every small scraps was given by the mothers to the little girls to learn to sew with. Fortunate is the person who has one of these little early quilts.
Quilting for dolls continues even today with quilts being made for many of the popular dolls of today. There are several made commercially for American Girl and Barbie to mention a few. Also today doll quilts have become popular with the online quilting groups as they can be made to show the latest and different designs in a small scale. Many quilts are made by mothers and grandmothers for a daughter's or grand daughter's favorite doll. Doll quilts have a long history of popularity and will continue with both seamstresses and doll collectors and most of all the little girls that play with them.
This blog is written for doll lovers and collectors and if any one is interesting in making a quilt for a favorite doll, there are many pictures, free patterns, instruction videos etc. on the web for making a doll quilt. Or you can do as I did and buy some of the printed fabric pieces and make a small quilt with them. So the tradition continues..........
To see many beautiful quilts with a lot of them antique, go to doll quilts on Pinterest and take a look at all the beautiful little quilts posted there.