Adirondack Culture: Quilting

Most americans have fond memories of snuggling up in an old quilt that their grandmother —or great-grandmother—  had made years before. Some of these family heirlooms may even have made the infamous trek out west on a wagon train.

It is often complained that things just aren’t what they used to be, however, quilt making is making a comeback! Many younger ones have taken up the art, which can be a very therapeutic substitute for the constant touch of technology that seems to add to our stress and sleeplessness at an alarming rate!


 Quilts are an integral part of American history and the Adirondacks have played a key role in that history. Quilting patterns and techniques are similar through the Unites States, as well as other parts of the world, however, similar techniques have taken on different personalities.

The Adirondack “personality” narrates the unique story of life in this rugged and isolated region. The Scrap quilts tell of the importance that was given in using everything available, after all the Adirondack region was not an easy place to acquire new materials. Another common characteristic of Adirondack quilts is the extra heavy padding used in them, this was obviously due to the long and cold winters of the region. Many of the quilts also show a strong inspiration of the elements and artistic nature of the adirondack environment.

The is a great online exhibit that The Adirondack Museum has put together on Adirondack quilts. You can see it at the following link: “Common Threads: 150 Years of Adirondack Quilts and Comforters

Quilting Lessons Near Lake George

The Adirondack Folk School regularly offers quilting lessons, among many other intriguing “lost” arts from the region. This unique, non-profit school is a great way to add an educational touch to your vacation.

There are several classes that will bond mothers and daughters, like the quilting classes. There are also great courses for father and sons to enjoy together as well as fun activities for the whole family. If you are planning a family vacation to the area you should check out there website!


A popular style of quilting lately has been the “Log Cabin style”, which is among the most easily recognizes popular styles. They say the style was inspired by log cabins, however, it is interesting that very similar —if not almost identical— patterns have been found on ancient Egyptian mummies. This leads many to theorize that the pattern originated in London during the “Egyptian fascination” that filled British museums with Egyptian artifacts.

Whatever the origin, there is no denying the American heritage the stye contains. Recently the Log Cabin Heart design has become popular.

We hope you have enjoyed this post! It is the first of a series that we have decided to do on Adirondack Culture. We will be writing post on other interesting pastimes and activities that are linked to the culture of the region, so stay tuned!