Identification and Price guides for Antiques & Collectibles

Members Log-In
Forgot Password?

A Guide to Researching and Appraising

Join the most updated and complete collectibles research online - Learn more...

Collectible American QuiltsQuilting has been a part of American culture since the 18th century. Quilts were made for practical use as bedding, but over time, they have become a form of art and expression. Collectible American quilts are treasured by many and can fetch high prices at auctions and sales. If you are interested in collecting American quilts, this guide will help you get started.

What are American Quilts?

Collectible American quilts are quilts that are valuable because of their historical significance, rarity, beauty, or craftsmanship. Some quilts are collectible because of the fabric used or the pattern of the quilt. Others are collectible because of the story behind the quilt or the person who made it. Whatever the reason, collectible American quilts are highly prized by collectors and enthusiasts alike.

How to Research Collectible American Quilts?

Researching collectible American quilts is an essential part of the collecting process. The following are some tips for researching collectible American quilts:
  • Join Quilt Groups and Associations  -  One of the best ways to learn about collectible American quilts is by joining a quilt group or association. These groups are made up of people who are passionate about quilting and can provide you with valuable information about collectible quilts. You can also attend quilting shows and events where you can meet other collectors and see examples of collectible quilts.
  • Visit Quilt Museums and Exhibitions  -  Another way to learn about collectible American quilts is by visiting quilt museums and exhibitions. These museums often have collections of quilts that are historically significant, rare, or beautiful. They also provide information about the history of quilting in America and the techniques used to create quilts.
  • Read Books and Articles About Quilting  -  There are many books and articles about quilting that can help you learn about collectible American quilts. Some books are specific to certain types of quilts, while others provide general information about the history of quilting in America. Reading books and articles can give you a deeper understanding of the art of quilting and help you identify collectible quilts.
  • Research Online  -  The internet is a valuable tool for researching collectible American quilts. There are many websites dedicated to quilting that provide information about the history of quilting, techniques used to create quilts, and examples of collectible quilts. You can also find information about quilt auctions and sales online.

How to Identify Collectible American Quilts?

Identifying collectible American quilts can be challenging, especially if you are not familiar with quilting. The following are some tips for identifying collectible American quilts:
  • Look for Antique Quilts  -  Antique quilts are quilts that are over 100 years old. These quilts are often collectible because of their rarity and historical significance. Look for quilts that have been well-preserved and have not been altered or repaired extensively.
  • Examine the Fabric  -  The fabric used in a quilt can provide clues about its age and origin. For example, cotton fabric was not widely available until the 19th century, so if a quilt is made entirely of cotton fabric, it is likely to be from the 19th or 20th century. Silk and wool fabrics were also used in quilting, but they were less common than cotton.
  • Check for Unique Patterns  -  Some quilts are collectible because of their unique patterns. Quilts made using traditional patterns such as log cabin or nine-patch may not be as valuable as quilts with unusual patterns or designs. Look for quilts with intricate designs, unusual color combinations, or patterns that are not commonly seen.
  • Consider the Quilt's Provenance  -  The provenance of a quilt refers to its history of ownership and the story behind the quilt. Quilts that have been owned by famous or notable individuals may be more valuable than quilts with no known history. Look for quilts with documentation that can verify their provenance.
  • Examine the Quilting Stitches  -  The stitching used in a quilt can provide clues about its age and craftsmanship. Hand-stitched quilts are often more valuable than machine-stitched quilts, especially if the stitching is intricate and well-executed. Look for even and consistent stitching and avoid quilts with loose or uneven stitches.

How to Care for Collectible American Quilts?

Collectible American quilts require special care to preserve their beauty and value. The following are some tips for caring for collectible American quilts:
  • Store Quilts Properly  -  Store quilts in a cool, dry place that is free from sunlight, pests, and humidity. Do not fold quilts for long-term storage as this can cause creases and damage to the fabric. Instead, roll the quilts on a cardboard tube and cover them with a cotton or muslin cloth.
  • Clean Quilts Carefully  -  Do not wash collectible American quilts unless it is absolutely necessary. If cleaning is required, use a mild detergent and cold water. Do not soak the quilt and avoid using bleach or fabric softeners. Dry the quilt flat or hang it on a clothesline in the shade.
  • Avoid Displaying Quilts in Direct Sunlight  -  Direct sunlight can cause fading and damage to the fabric of collectible American quilts. Display quilts in a place that is free from direct sunlight or use UV-filtering glass to protect the quilt from harmful rays.
  • Handle Quilts Carefully  -  When handling collectible American quilts, be gentle and avoid pulling or tugging on the fabric. Use clean hands or wear cotton gloves to avoid transferring oils and dirt to the quilt. Do not hang the quilt by its corners or edges as this can cause stress on the fabric.


Collectible American quilts are a treasured part of American culture and history. By researching and collecting these beautiful and valuable works of art, you can gain a deeper understanding of the art of quilting and the stories behind these unique and intricate creations. By following the tips outlined in this guide, you can start your journey as a collector of collectible American quilts and preserve these works of art for generations to come.

Unlock the true value of your collection with our comprehensive research guides from identifying makers' marks to appraising all kinds of antiques and collectibles, including items featured in this article.

Our up-to-date information will give you an accurate understanding of your items' worth. Don't miss out on this valuable resource - visit our research tools today!

In addition to some examples shown below on this page, you can also search our price guide for your own treasures.

Examples of related items from our Price Guides

There are many more auction results available to our members...

Ideal research tools for Collectors, Personal Property Appraisers, Antiques & Collectibles Dealers, Auction Houses, Museums, eBayers or other online sellers (Rubylane, Etsy, etc) and curious minds interested in appraising & identifying collectibles

Sign Up

Privacy, Terms and Conditions
Copyrighted Material - All rights reserved.