Quilters have always used their art to reflect the culture and politics of their times. The names of quilt blocks and whole quilts speak for the times — Burgoyne Surrounded, Rocky Road to California, and Log Cabin. This last design became especially popular in the 19th century because of its symbolic associations with President Abraham Lincoln.
Now we even have a new quilt design for OUR times, as uncertain as they may be. The Dow Jones Quilt, designed by Miss Rosie’s Quilt Company speaks to economy, uncertainty, and whimsy. The pattern for this quilt requires 61 charm squares for the basic pattern. For non-quilters, a charm square is a 5 x 5-inch square of fabric commonly packaged to spotlight a new line of fabrics. A fabric designer usually designs an entire line of 20 to 40 different complementary fabrics in different color-ways. The “charm pack” consists of one “charm square” of each fabric, providing an economical way for the quilter (or fabric “collector”) to acquire a sample of the entire collection.
Charm packs and patterns have become increasingly popular as the price of quilt fabric has risen in the past few years to about $9.95/yard (at my Southern California quilt shops).
Dow Jones makes good use of charm squares in a graphic image of the stock exchange graph. If I make this quilt, I think I will leave the market moving in an upward trend. It doesn’t hurt to hope!