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Housetop Quilts

A “Housetop” quilt is a quilt built around a plain square in the middle or a scrap of other patchwork surrounded by strips forming lots of frames.  There are many variations of a Housetop quilt, but this is the basic idea.  The design leaves a lot of room for improvisational shapes, colors and fabrics.   

Housetop designs were uncommon outside the Gee’s Bend community.  They may have been originally inspired by central medallion quilts of the early nineteenth century.  

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