Quilt Notes: COLONIAL PAVEMENT is an absolute beauty, especially when tiled (see below), as would have been the case with the original pavement design. Barbara Brackman's ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PIECED QUILT PATTERNS (#2557) attributes the block to the Old Chelsea Station (a mail order needlecraft service, which began in 1933). The various design compendiums show different widths for the center diamond. This version is based on the rendering by Maggie Malone (#2245) in her 5,500 QUILT BLOCK DESIGNS.|
(piecing grid = 24 x 24)
COLONIAL PAVEMENT first appeared in print in the quilt column by Alice Brooks in the Detroit Free Press, according to Jinny Beyer (p. 118-9) on December 24, 1935. Comments by Brooks state the following:
"Winter's the time for quilting and how fast the hours fly when one is engrossed in so profitable an occupation. 'Colonial Pavement' takes its inspiration from the rich mosaic pavements of Washington's time. It's an easy quilt to cut and piece, for, with most patches the same width, the material can be cut in strips. Straight pieces are always easier to sew, too; with this quilt you start at the center."
In a labyrinth the center is where you usually end up, so a lovely thought by Brooks, since the pattern easily evokes the spiraling of innumerable, geometric journey designs.
Like several other patterns at this site, COLONIAL PAVEMENT visually draws the design with patched lines, rather than piecing geometric shapes together. This outline method of piecing is very Japanese. See JAPANESE QUILT BLOCKS TO MIX AND MATCH by Susan Briscoe. Compare with similar line drawing type design structures at this site, especially:
CITY STREETS, and
but see also the same effect, though somewhat less pronounced, in:
and NAVAJO (2).