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Reproduction fabrics of 1750-1950

Textile History Lectures and Workshops

Margo Krager teachingTake advantage of us!! ...and learn more about the fabrics you love! Is your quilt group or fabric study class interested in having us give a presentation? Go ahead and take advantage of us!! Benefit from our years of researching fabrics.

Margo has spent over twenty five years researching cotton printed and woven fabrics used in quilts and garments. This includes extensive library research on textiles, investigating print and dye technology developments, visiting museums all over the US and in Europe, and viewing both private and public textile collections. We also own several vintage fabric sample books including our classic c. 1830 Dargate Book (vintage = actual fabric from the past). Margo has given lectures to quilters across the country and fabric retailers.

Attendees at her lectures sand workshops have found the presentation to be very engaging and we frequently get feedback on Margo's talks -- "entertaining", "enthusiastic", and "a good speaker".

The lectures typically include free reproduction samples of the topic for the attendees. Workshops are approximately 3 hours in length and included an expanded lecture section, hands on fabric dating of quits, tops and blocks plus the start of a working notebook. Also, she normally totes along a "mini-mall" of fabrics relevant to the presentations.

Here's an idea: often, several quilt groups/organizations in an area go together on lectures to help pay for transportation costs.

Current Topics

Have another topic you'd like her to talk about? Contact us. If it's dealing with old fabrics 1775-1950, she can talk about it!


Lectures and Workshops


History of Chintz

When you think Chintz....do you think of a fabric with lovely big florals and a shiny finish? The origins of the word...chints (Portuguese for 'spotted')...comes from the 17th century East India Company trade with India. These early imported fabrics were most often florals, usually medium to large in size but the shine or lack of depends on which decade of which century. Sometimes shine was fashionable,other times not so much. Learn the history of these much loved designs plus the beginnings and popularity of Chintz Center Panels. The 90-minute lecture will cover 300 years of textile printing and includes a slide show, great visuals, paper hand-outs and several reproduction fabric samples (for each participant) to illustrate major points of the lecture.

Lecture--90 Minutes    Max size - unlimited     Fee $300 plus travel costs

Hands on Workshop-- 5 hours, Max size-20 students Medallion style quilt ( 60" square) will use a Chintz Center Panel ( or other panel/applique square of the student's choice) and construction techniques for assorted surrounds, including printed stripes. Fee $ 750.00 plus travel costs




History of Fabric Printing

Do you know the difference between a double pink, a Garibaldi red, indigo, or madder-style print? This lecture will make you conversant in all four plus many more fads and trends in fabric printing history. The 90-minute lecture is a basic overview of the 175 years of fabric printing. This includes a slide show, great visuals, hand-outs of a bibliography and a time line of print and dye development and corresponding quilting style, and several reproduction fabric samples (for each participant) to illustrate major points of the lecture.

Lecture--90 Minutes    Max size - unlimited     Fee $300 plus travel costs

Workshop-- 3 hours Max size-40 students Fee $ 500 plus travel costs

strikingly beautiful indigo fabric4000 years of Indigos: from Egyptian mummies to American Cowboys

Indigo blue textiles have been highly prized since antiquity. Follow the trail of indigo over the centuries as Margo Krager, from ReproductionFabrics.com, discusses the history of these wonderful fabrics and the dye that gives them their special color. The journey begins with blue threads found in Egyptian mummy cloths and travels around the world touching 12th century meso-American and African tribal chiefs, 17th century European woad growers, Northern Civil War soldiers, the American cowboy, and contemporary 'blue-collar' workers in America, Europe, Africa, and Asia. This presentation includes a slide show of woven textiles, flags, costumes and uniforms, and quilts, plus a bibliography and handouts of indigo-dyed fabrics.

Lecture--90 Minutes    Max size - unlimited    Fee $300 plus travel costs

Workshop-- 3hours Max size--40 students Fee $500 plus travel costs

Furs on a Stick - Fabrics as Trading Goods During the Fur Trade Era

Textiles have been traded on a global scale for over 400 years. This lecture will trace the introduction of Indian printed fabrics into Europe and their eventual arrival here in America as trade goods. These textiles poured into American seaports early in the 18th century and were used for furnishings as well as clothing and quilts in homes along the eastern coast. They were also traded for furs with Native Americans. European and Asia textiles and ready-made shirts were an important means of exchange for over 150 years; between government agents dealing with the Five Civilized Nations, Lewis and Clark on their epic journey, or later Indian agents in Fort Benton, Montana. This presentation includes a slide show, a bibliography, and handouts of reproduction fabric samples typical of those used in Indian trade shirts.

Meriwether Lewis traveled to Philadelphia in the spring of 1803 to gather thirty-five hundred pounds of supplies and Indian presents for the journey west. He purchased beads, tomahawks, fishing hooks, combs and "30 calico shirts".

Lecture 90 Minutes    Max size - unlimited     Fee $300 plus travel costs

Workshop 3 hours Max size-40 students Fee $500 plus travel costs


A Peek into the Pat: Three 19th Century Fabric Sample Books

Learn about the use and importance of fabric sample books in the 19th century and see actual antique fabric swatches that show the skill and craftsmanship of 19th century fabric designers, colorists and printers. Three different books will be discussed, the Dargate book c. 1830, an 1849 Delaines book plus one dated 1863, all are from the Mulhouse region in France. Learn how that beautiful 1830s reproduction floral arrived on your favorite quilt shop's shelf. Margo will trace the development of a reproduction line of fabric: the source , an idea, the research and selection, 'croquis', strike off's to the final bolt! Margo bring one of her books so you can have a close up look at the actual sample plus numerous handouts, fabric samples, and a bibliography for your historic fabric notebook.

Lecture--90 Minutes    Max size - unlimited     Fee $300 plus travel costs

Workshop 3 hours Max size-40 students Fee $500 plus travel costs


Textiles of the Arts and Crafts Era

This lecture/workshop will trace the evolution of the Arts and Crafts style with a focus on the decorative arts in both Great Britain and America from 1880-1920. This will include the influence and fabrics from Liberty of London, William Morris, Art Nouveau and the importance of the Prairie style homes of the mid West. You will see visuals of textiles and crafts of the period plus handouts of history, period design as well as fabric samples typical of that period. If you are trying to decorate an Arts and Crafts home, this class is for you.

Lecture--90 Minutes    Max size - unlimited     Fee $300 plus travel costs

Workshop 3 hours Max size-40 students Fee $500 plus travel costs




More Details

Travel costs - includes travel from Northfield, Minnesota; meals and lodging. Every effort will be made to keep travel and per diem costs reasonable.

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