Quilt Notes

The Amish and Hmong: Two Cultures Quilting Together

We think of the Amish and the Hmong as two very different cultures but in Pennsylvania quilting has brought them together. The Hmong excel at applique as you can see at "Hmong Needlework: Traditions Both Ancient and New", while the Amish are known for their exquisite quilting. See "Amish Quilts & Quilting History: Beauty in Simplicity".

These two cultures have come together to quilt. The two communities have lived near each other in Pennsylvania since the 1970s and some have pooled their skills to make beautiful quilts. Here is an intriguing newspaper article, "How a hill tribe from Laos changed a Pennsylvania tradition.

If these women only did their needlework for family and home this marriage of skills would never have occurred. But when consumers discovered Amish quilts Amish women began making quilts to sell to the public. These quilts are not always made in the traditional Amish way but are made in styles that the customers find appealing. While the Amish rarely did any applique they found buyers wanted them. How perfect to find their neighbors, the Hmong, excel in applique. Now some Amish and Hmong women work together to make lovely quilts.