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Calico Rose; Calico Rose

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quilt

QUILT INDEX RECORD

18-14-86

DESCRIPTION:

This quilt is unusual in the Gasperik collection precisely because it so faithfully follows a commercial kit. On most of her quilts, Mary indulged more personal and creative talents. This quilt was made from a 1940s era commercial quilt kit Calico Rose Paragon #01082.

ESSAY:

Mary Gasperik seems to have used the fabrics and instructions supplied with Paragon #01082 Calico Rose, without making any substantial changes or additions. The bias binding, extra embroidered leaf veins, and 1/2-inch diamond grid quilting (apparently uncalled for by the kit) are, however, indicative of a skilled and careful needleworker. Traces of the kit quilting lines are visible on this unwashed quilt. For the most part, Gasperik followed the lines; however, in one area she doubled the density by quilting a one-half-inch diamond grid where a one-inch grid was stamped on the cloth. According to the website called fabrics.net (http://info.fabrics.net/history-of-kit-quilts/), in its section called "Kit Quilts by Individuals" (June 12, 2014): "Paragon made 127 kits from 1937 - 1982 and are still making kits today." That would mean that Gasperik did not make this quilt before 1937. We know it won a prize at a Marshall Fields department store competition in 1942.

Susan Salser compared Gasperik's Calico Rose to an identical quilt she acquired on the internet. The two quilters used the same fabrics, patterns, and even quilting patterns, but there were slight differences. Gasperik used bias binding while the other used straight binding. Gasperik embroidered three lines on each leaf; the other embroidered a single vein on each leaf. Gasperik quilted a one-half-inch grid on the block background; the other quilted a one-inch grid.

Where are the records for this quilt housed?

Mary Gasperik Legacy Project

Who documented this quilt?

Mary Gasperik Private Collection

CONTRIBUTING INSTITUTIONAL INVENTORY CONTROL NUMBERS: Enter the main control number for this item you are entering.

049

TYPE OF QUILT OBJECT: Choose the best description for the quilt being documented.

Finished quilt

QUILT'S TITLE, IF IT HAS ONE: Many quilts have no title, but contemporary quilters often give a name to their quilts.

Calico Rose

OWNER'S NAME FOR QUILT'S PATTERN: Enter the name given to the quilt by the owner. This can be the name the family used to refer to the quilt as it passed through different generations, e.g. "Aunt Susie's quilt" or a pattern name that the owner used.

Calico Rose

OVERALL WIDTH: Enter how wide the quilt is.

87 inches

OVERALL LENGTH: Enter how long the quilt is.

97 inches

SHAPE OF EDGE: Choose the best description for the edges of the quilt.

Straight

SHAPE OF CORNERS: Choose the best description for the corners of the quilt.

Straight

PREDOMINANT COLOR(S): Enter all colors that are found in the quilt.

Green; Red; White

OVERALL COLOR SCHEME: Choose the best color scheme description for the quilt being documented.

Bright or primary colors

OVERALL CONDITION: Choose the best description for the quilt being documented.

Very good/almost new

COMMENTS OR NOTES ON QUILT'S CONDITION OR REPAIR HISTORY: Some quilts have had extensive or unusual repair work done. Please use this field to describe anything that didn't fit in the previous fields.

The quilt has never been washed.

METHOD OF INSCRIPTION: Choose the method used to inscribe the quilt.

Other

OTHER METHOD OF INSCRIPTION: If you chose Other, please describe the method used to inscribe the quilt.

Cloth tag sewn to back reads: "Mary Gasperik 1411 W 174 Street East Hazelcrest Illinois"

LOCATION OF INSCRIPTION: Enter where the inscription was found on the quilt.

on block

TIME PERIOD: Choose the time frame that best describes when the quilt was made. The date does not have to appear on the quilt to enter it in this field. This can be your best guess based on family stories or your own knowledge of quilts.

1930-1949

DATE FINISHED: Enter the date the quilt was finished.

1942 or earlier

FAMILY/OWNER'S DATE FOR QUILT: If there are family stories that indicate a date when the quilt was made, enter that date.

1940s

OTHER EXTERNAL OR PROFESSIONAL DATE ESTIMATION: If the date was estimated by an antique dealer, quilt historian or appraiser, enter that date.

1940s, Uncertain An old exhibit tag, probably indicating it was shown at Tuley Park, reads "Calico Rose Quilt, 2nd Prize 1942 Marshall Field Exhibit, by Mrs. M. Gasperik."

OTHER DATE ESTIMATION BY WHOM: Enter the name and/or title of the person who estimated the quilt's date for field 23d.

Merikay Waldvogel

LAYOUT FORMAT: Choose the best description for the layout (or set) of the quilt.

Block pattern

NUMBER OF QUILT BLOCKS: This field only applies to quilts with a block format. Some blocks are harder to count than others (e.g. Storms at Sea, Double Wedding Ring). If needed, describe how the blocks were counted or if there are half blocks/corner blocks

12

SIZE OF QUILT BLOCKS (L X W): Applies only to block pattern quilts; block patterns are by far the most common layout formats. Block patterns don't have to be square (Double Wedding Ring and Grandmother's Flower Garden are common non-square blocks).

15.5 inches x 16.5 inches

ARRANGEMENT OF QUILT BLOCKS: BLOCK ORIENTATION: This field only applies to quilts with a block format. Choose the best description for how the quilt blocks appear in the quilt.

Straight

SPACING RELATIVE TO OTHER BLOCKS: This field only applies to quilts with a block format. Choose the best description for how the quilt blocks are set together.

Separated by plain sashing

NUMBER OF DIFFERENT BLOCK PATTERNS PRESENT: Enter the number of different block patterns used in the quilt.

1

BLOCK STYLE: Some patterns use the same shape template throughout the quilt (i.e. Charm quilts, Grandmother Flower Garden, Brick wall, Lone Star). If this applies to your quilt, choose the best description.

Same block throughout

SASHING WIDTH: Sashings are strips of fabric that separate the quilt blocks from one another. Enter the width of the sashing in inches, if applicable.

3.5 inches

NUMBER OF BORDERS: Borders are the strips of fabric that are added after the blocks (and sashings) are put together. They appear on the outside edges of the quilt. Quilts often have multiple borders. Enter the number of borders on the quilt.

One

BORDER DESCRIPTION: Describe the style of the borders (i.e. pieced, appliqued, stenciled) and the width of each border, from the inside to the outside.

A narrow band of applique frames the central field on all four sides as prescribed by the kit.

FABRIC FIBER TYPES USED IN QUILT TOP: Choose all the types of fiber that are used to make the quilt top.

Cotton

FABRIC PATTERNS, STYLES, MOTIFS, OR PRINT CATEGORIES USED IN QUILT TOP: Choose all the types of prints that are used to make the quilt top.

Print; Solid/plain

CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES USED IN QUILT TOP: APPLIQUE TECHNIQUES: Choose the applique method used to construct the quilt.

Hand Applique

CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES USED IN QUILT TOP: EMBELLISHMENT TECHNIQUES: Choose the embellishment technique used to make the quilt.

Embroidery

UNIQUE OR OTHER CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES: Enter any unusual technique that hasn't been described in a previous field.

This quilt looks like it is composed of individual blocks sewn together, but it is not. In construction terms, it is really a strip quilt bearing applique.

CONTAINS PAPER REMAINS: This field is for quilts that have been either string pieced on a paper foundation or English template pieced. Choose yes if you can feel or see paper on the quilt that was used as a construction aid.

no

EMBELLISHMENT MATERIALS USED IN TOP: Choose the embellishment material used to make the quilt.

Cotton thread

FABRIC FIBER TYPES USED IN QUILT BACK: Choose the fiber type used to make the quilt back.

Cotton

COLOR OF BACKING: Enter all colors that are found in the quilt backing.

Cream

NUMBER OF PIECES: Enter the number of pieces of fabric used in the quilt back.

3

WIDTH OF PIECES: Enter, in inches, the width of the pieces of fabric on the back of the quilt.

16.5 inches, 36.5 inches, and 34 inches

DESCRIPTION OF BACK: Choose the best description for the back of the quilt.

Same fabric used throughout; Solid/plain

MATERIALS USED IN QUILT BINDING: Choose the fiber type used to make the quilt binding.

Cotton

FABRIC STRUCTURE USED IN BINDING: Choose the fabric structure used to make the quilt binding.

Plain weave

CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES USED IN BINDING: Choose the construction technique used to make the quilt binding.

Bias grain

WIDTH OF QUILT BINDING: Choose the width (in inches) of the binding of the quilt. Measure from the front side only.

less than a half inch

MATERIAL USED FOR QUILT BATTING OR FILLING: Choose the fiber content that best describes the material used to fill the quilt.

Cotton

QUILTING TECHNIQUES USED: Choose the technique that best describes the way the quilt layers are held together.

Hand quilting

THREAD TYPE: Describe the fiber content or type of quilting thread used on the quilt.

cotton

THREAD COLOR: Enter the color(s) of thread used to hold the quilt layers together.

white

NUMBER OF QUILTING STITCHES PER INCH (PLACE 1): Count only the stitches that are visible on the top and measure in one place on the quilt. Enter the measurement.

10

NUMBER OF QUILTING STITCHES PER INCH (PLACE 2): Count only the stitches that are visible on the top and measure in a different place on the quilt. Enter the measurement.

8

WIDTH BETWEEN QUILTING LINES (IN INCHES): Try to determine the average distance between quilt motifs to determine how densely the quilt is quilted. Enter your estimate.

varies

QUILTING DESIGNS USED: MOTIFS/OVERALL PATTERNS: Choose the overall quilt design found on the quilt top.

Grid diamond; Patches outlined/in the ditch

QUILTING DESIGNS USED: DECORATIVE PATTERNS: Choose the decorative quilt design found on the quilt top.

Cables; Floral

QUILTING DESIGNS USED: BACKGROUND FILL PATTERNS: Choose the background quilt design found on the quilt top.

Parallel lines

ANY OTHER FEATURES OR NOTES ABOUT THE QUILT'S APPEARANCE, MATERIALS, OR CONSTRUCTION: Describe anything about the physical appearance of the quilt that wasn't already recorded in a previous field.

Although this appears to be a quilt constructed of 12 blocks, in fact it is constructed from 3 vertical strips. This is true of the Gasperik quilt, the Paragon kit #01082, and a completed Calico Rose made by an unknown quilter which Salser purchased from a quilt dealer.

QUILT TOP MADE BY: Enter the name of the person(s) who made the quilt top.

Gasperik, Mary

QUILTED BY: Enter the name of the person(s) who quilted the top.

Gasperik, Mary

CITY: Enter the name of the city where the quilt was made.

Chicago

COUNTY: Enter the name of the county where the quilt was made.

Cook County

STATE: Enter the name of the state where the quilt was made.

Illinois (IL)

COUNTRY: Enter the name of the country where the quilt was made.

United States

HOW WAS QUILT ACQUIRED BY OWNER: Choose the best description for how the owner acquired the quilt.

Inheritance

DETAILS ON HOW THE QUILT WAS ACQUIRED:

Selected by daughter Elsie during a division of quilts after Gasperik died in 1969. About 1988-89, after they had divided up their mother's Gasperik quilts, Susan Salser acquired this quilt in a trade with her sister Karen. She traded a mint Indiana Wreath (#063) and an apricot Morning Glory quilt (#062) for this Calico Rose and a twin-sized Tree of Life quilt (#044).

QUILTMAKER'S REASONS FOR MAKING THE QUILT: If the quilt was made for a specific purpose, choose the reason from the list.

Home decoration

QUILT WAS ORIGINALLY DESIGNED TO BE USED AS: Choose how the quilt was originally used.

Bedding, special occasion

QUILT IS PRESENTLY USED AS: Choose how the quilt is being used by the present owner.

Exhibit; Keepsake/memento

OTHER PRESENT USE(S) OF QUILT: If you chose Other, please explain the quilt's present use.

Mary's grandchildren regard her quilts as a unique collection to be preserved and appreciated.

OTHER SOURCE(S) OF QUILT'S MATERIALS: If you chose Other, please explain how the quilt maker acquired the fabric for this quilt.

Kit

QUILT TOP PATTERN SOURCE: Choose where the quilt maker found the pattern for this quilt.

Commercial/Published source: Kit

COMMERCIAL SOURCE NAME(S): If you know the commercial name of the pattern used for this quilt, please enter it. This may include books, magazines, newsletters, pattern companies, computer software programs, and kits.

Paragon #01082 "Calico Rose"

QUILTING DESIGN PATTERN SOURCE: Choose where the quilt maker found the pattern for the quilting design used in this quilt.

Kit

ANY ADDITIONAL NOTES OR STORIES ABOUT THE QUILT'S DESIGN OR MATERIALS SOURCE: Describe anything about the design of the quilt that wasn't already recorded in a previous field.

Salser recorded the following notes when she examined an original Paragon 01082 Calico Rose kit in June 2017, comparing the kit with Gasperik's quilt, as well as a completed Calico Rose quilt made by an unknown quilter in New York: The set of solid color fabrics in this kit is somewhat different from the set of fabrics that Gasperik used on her Calico Rose. But the set of solid fabrics Gasperik used is fairly similar to the set of fabrics employed by the maker of a fully completed Calico Rose I purchased from a seller around 10 years ago. I say "fairly similar" because the various pink and rose shades match closely on the two quilts, but the non-Gasperik quilt employs two very different solid green fabrics - one a kelly green and the other distinctly olive green whereas Gasperik's quilt shows no kelly green at all, but does employ two VERY SLIGHTLY different shades of olive green fabric. It is somewhat odd to note that, in this one case at least, Gasperik used fewer, rather than more, kit-proposed fabric choices. I wouldn't have expected that. It is probably not news to researchers of this period of quilt-making in America that the same kit number purchased from different sources might contain different colors of fabrics to be used to make the same applique 'part number'. And it's probably no surprise that those differences were sometimes subtle and sometimes not-so-subtle, probably depending on the availability of fabrics to the company assembling the kits. What strikes me most today is the level of detail offered by this Paragon kit. There are 11 different leaf outline shapes (which from a distance look fairly uniform) employed in each bowl of roses! Actually there are 22 different leaf applique cutouts, because the vein line is printed on the leaf (you don't simply turn the leaf over and use it on the other side of the bowl - the bowls having symmetrical halves). The person attempting to make the kit I am examining did not have the sufficient skill level, or perhaps sufficient patience, to turn under the edges of each leaf accurately, and thus failed to capture the subtle differences in leaf shapes which the Paragon kit’s stamped fabric offers. I think such design subtleties are what brings the applique to life and am noticing that Gasperik's ability to capture the slight differences (where she wanted to) but retain uniformity where that was needed for design balance, is something that makes her quilts so "masterful". This Paragon kit #01082 offers surprisingly great promise and help to those who know how to avail themselves of it. And probably adequate pleasure to those who just do the best that they can.

EXHIBITIONS: List all known exhibits where this quilt has been displayed.

Marshall Fields Department Store display and contest in downtown Chicago, 1942.

The Quilts of Mary Gasperik, Ravenswood Historic Site, Livermore, CA, March 14-15, 1992.

CONTESTS ENTERED: List contest(s) entered.

Marshall Fields, Chicago, 1942

OTHER RELATED ITEMS: List other materials that exist about this quilt like oral histories, wills, diaries, or patterns.

Paragon kit #01082 Calico Rose purchased by Susan Salser June 2017. The original purchaser did some applique work on it, but the majority of fabrics remain a nearly complete, uncut set.

Kit cover or advertisement: Calico Rose Paragon 01082.

Unquilted appliqued block cut from kit strip and stamped with identfication: "PARAGON" (N.Y) {REG U.S. PAT.OFF.} No 01082-QUILT" purchased from Judy Kelius, Nov. 2004. Private collection of Susan Salser.

Completed Calico Rose quilt made by unknown quilter. Purchased by Susan Salser from Alice Wiebe, July, 2002. Wiebe purchased the quilt on ebay in from a seller in Albany, N.Y. in March, 2002. Susan Salser private collection. This quilt is in excellent condition.

Called Urn of Flowers. origin unknown, c. 1920, 76" x 97", collection of That Patchwork Place, Inc., Bothell, Washington, a photograph of the quilt appears on page 57 of Pieces of the Past by Nancy J. Martin, 1986. What may be the same quilt is called Peruvian Lily in a picture on page 128 of Make Room for Quilts by Nancy J. Martin, That Patchwork Place, 1994.

A photograph of yet another Calico Rose appears in Minnesota Quilts: Creating Connections with Our Past, Voyageur Press, Minnesota Quilt Project 2005, page 100. This quilt, made by Boletta Lund Huntington circa 1950, won a prize at the Minnesota State Fair.

A blue version of this design, called Blue Basket was marketed by the Paragon Co. as kit #01101, circa 1950. An example of this quilt is in the collection of the International Quilt Study Center, Lincoln, Nebraska. It was displayed, in 2003, as part of an exhibition of kit quilts in their collection.

Described as Bowl of Flowers, unknown quiltmaker, 85" x 99", Pennsylvania, c. 1920-1950. Made from Paragon Quilt Kit Pattern #01101; Blue Basket, another version of this quilt design was included in a 1997 show at The Museum of the American Quilter's Society. That show was 20th Century Quilts 1900-1970 Joyce Gross & Cuesta Benberry.

Oral History: Mary's grand-daughter, Linda Krueger MacLachlan, remembers being told that Mary's quilts were disqualified from winning prizes in a Chicago department store contest (this one was exhibited at Marshall Fields) because quilting marks were visible on her quilts. This quilt does bear traces of the kit's proposed quilting design.

Yellow exhibit tag reading "Calico Rose Quilt 2nd Prize 1942 Marshall Field Exhibit by Mrs. M. Gasperik" in pencil handwriting (Susan Salser, private collection). Tags like this were made for Tuley Park quilt shows. Susan believes she remembers seeing this quilt hanging in the 1949 show, but doesn't know the date of the previous Tuley Park quilt show.

AVAILABLE SOURCES FOR QUILTMAKER: List other source materials about this quiltmaker such as photos, oral histories, book or newspaper publications, fame for some other reason or event.

Merikay Waldvogel and Barbara Brackman. Patchwork Souvenirs of the 1933 Chicago World's Fair, (Nashville, TN: Rutledge Hill Press, 1993)102-103.

Merikay Waldvogel "One American Dream Comes True", Quilters Newsletter Magazine, March 2008, 46-49.

OWNERSHIP OF THIS QUILT IS:

Private

NAME OF QUILT OWNER:

Susan Krueger Salser

QUILT OWNER'S COUNTRY:

United States

AUTHOR/INTERVIEWEE'S RELATION TO THE QUILT:

Author/researcher; Blood relative of quiltmaker; Quilt owner

OTHER RELATIONSHIP TO SOURCE: If you chose Other, for the relationship to the source, describe the relationship here.

Grand-daughter

RELATIONSHIP OF SOURCE PERSON TO QUILT: Choose the best description of the relationship of the source to the quilt.

Quilt owner

IF SOURCE PERSON IS QUILT OWNER: If the source is the owner, choose how they came to own the quilt.

Inherited

OTHER INFORMATION ON SOURCE PERSON TO QUILT:

Grand-daughter Susan Salser began this research effort in 1991, after she and her two sisters divided up the quilts which belonged to their mother (Elsie Gasperik Krueger) who died in 1988. Her ongoing research has been fruitful and interesting.

QUILTMAKER'S MAIDEN NAME:

Mihalovits, Maria

QUILTMAKER'S GENDER:

Female

QUILTMAKER'S BIRTH DATE:

01/25/1888

DEATH DATE OF THE QUILTMAKER, IF APPLICABLE:

05/25/1969

QUILTMAKER'S ETHNIC BACKGROUND:

Hungarian

QUILTMAKER'S EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND:

Elementary School

QUILTMAKER'S COUNTRY OF BIRTH:

Hungary

IN WHICH KIND OF ENVIRONMENT DID THE QUILTMAKER GROW UP?

Rural

CITY WHERE THE QUILTMAKER LIVES/LIVED:

Chicago

COUNTY WHERE THE QUILTMAKER LIVES/LIVED:

Cook

STATE WHERE THE QUILTMAKER LIVES/LIVED:

Illinois (IL)

COUNTRY WHERE THE QUILTMAKER LIVES/LIVED:

United States

QUILTMAKER'S FATHER'S NAME:

Mihalovits, Istvan

FATHER'S BIRTHPLACE:

Hungary

FATHER'S ETHNIC BACKGROUND:

Hungarian

QUILTMAKER'S MOTHER'S NAME:

Mihalovits, Vidoszava

MOTHER'S BIRTHPLACE:

Hungary

MOTHER'S ETHNIC BACKGROUND:

Hungarian

SPOUSE'S ETHNIC BACKGROUND:

Hungarian

SPOUSE'S OCCUPATION:

Milk Dealer/Grocery Store Owner/Butcher

NUMBER OF CHILDREN:

3

NUMBER OF FEMALE CHILDREN:

1 (Elsie 1909-1988)

NUMBER OF MALE CHILDREN:

2 (Elmer and Stephen)

HOW DID THE QUILTMAKER LEARN TO QUILT?

From guild or club member; Self-Taught

WHEN DID THE QUILTMAKER LEARN TO QUILT?

Age 40-49

WHY DOES/DID THE QUILTMAKER QUILT:

Pleasure; Other

OTHER, WHY THE QUILTMAKER QUILTS:

A number of skillfully made Calico Rose quilts exist. Gasperik, like the other quilters, probably selected this kit because she found its classic design and the materials supplied by Paragon appealing and adequate, even for a highly skilled and independent-minded quilter. Gasperik made quilts to exhibit in shows held by her Tuley Park quilt club in Chicago, the Detroit News quilt show in Detroit, many Illinois State Fairs, at least one Indiana State Fair. She entered quilts in at least 2 Chicago department store contests. She made at least one quilt and one quilt top specifically for the 1939 New York Worlds Fair quilt contest. She also made children's quilts specifically for grandchildren and great-grandchildren; and wedding and wedding anniversary quilts for her son Elmer and grand-daughter Karen. Primarily, she wanted to make quilts because it was her life passion and her greatest talent. The occasions and venues to show them presented themselves. It should be noted that prior to Mary's emigration to America in late 1904, at age 16, she was an apprenticed needleworker in her native Hungary. The intricate and colorful floral embroideries traditional to Hungary lend themselves especially well to applique, the quilt style Mary preferred.

NAME OF QUILTING GROUP: If the quilt maker belonged to a group, enter the name of the group.

Tuley Park Quilt Club and Detroit News Quilt Club

LOCATION OF GROUP:

Southside Chicago and Detroit MI

SPECIALIZED ACTIVITIES/EVENTS OF QUILTING GROUP: Enter activities the group participated in.

Chicago group met to quilt and held periodic quilt shows; Detroit group held national exhibits and contests.

ESTIMATED NUMBER OF QUILTS MADE BY THIS QUILTER:

more than 50

DID THE QUILTMAKER SELL QUILTS?

no

DOES/DID QUILTMAKER TEACH QUILTING: Is the quilt maker also a quilt teacher?

no

PHOTO CREDIT:

Don Gonzalez

ACCESS AND COPYRIGHT IS:

Restricted

HOLDER OF COPYRIGHT:

Susan Salser

Details

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Cite this Quilt

Gasperik, Mar. Calico Rose. 1942 or earlier. From Mary Gasperik Legacy Project, Mary Gasperik Private Collection. Published in The Quilt Index, https://quiltindex.org/view/?type=fullrec&kid=18-14-86. Accessed: 05/20/22

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