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Forum > Miscellaneous > How much are vintage quilts worth? ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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How much are vintage quilts worth?
nancy2001
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nancy2001  Friend of PR
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Date: 11/24/11 1:55 PM

Ten years ago. my husband inherited about a dozen patchwork quilts that his grandmother and great grandmother made by hand as a hobby during and after WWII. I'm a garment sewer not a quilter, but as far as I can tell the quilts are made of a random collection of cotton scrap fabrics, arranged in a simple checkerboard pattern, machine stitched together but hand quilted, with medium quality workmanship. They look nothing like the modern day quilts I have seen in the Nancy's Notions catalog.

To be honest, the quilts are of no sentimental value to me, and they are taking up much needed closet space in my sewing room. I wonder whether they would be worth selling on ebay, or through a local consignment shop, or whether I should simply donate them to Goodwill.

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In reply to nancy2001


Date: 11/24/11 2:23 PM

Why not donate them to a local charity, such as Hospice. They love having things like that for the families when they spend time with thier dying loved one.

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LauraTS
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Date: 11/24/11 2:25 PM

There are professional quilt appraisers out there - check with your local quilt guild to see if they have any recommendations. Values for quilts seem to be all over the place depending on age, design and how well the thing has held up. Based on your description I doubt your quilts are worth a ton, but it never hurts to check, and that would allow you to value them appropriately on ebay etc.

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Doris W. in TN
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In reply to nancy2001


Date: 11/24/11 5:37 PM

Depending on their condition (Excellent, Good, Fair, Poor) they might have a value of a few to several hundred dollars, especially since you can document who made then and where they were made. (that adds to the value)

I agree with the suggestion to find a qualified quilt appraiser, and have them appraised. It's worth the fee if you think you might sell them on eBay.

AQS might be able to tell you if there is a certified (by them) quilt appraiser in or near your area. Some people call themselves appraisers, but often it is more hobby than qualified opinion. However,,,, often many of those people know their stuff. If you have a local quilt guild, they might have a member who is very knowledgeable about old quilts.

fabrictherapy
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Date: 11/24/11 8:23 PM

http://www.americanquilter.com/quilt_world/appraisers.php is the list for certified appraisers. I have most of my quilts appraised for insurance reasons before I send it to a show, for me is it worth the fee. You are very lucky to have a quilt that has been passed down. My aunt tossed of my great gramma's quilts.

skae
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In reply to nancy2001


Date: 11/24/11 11:32 PM

quilts from WWII. those quilts are special. I bet they are still in excellent shape. Back then they made them for there beds not for pleasure of quilting it was a necessity. They used and recycled everything they had. I would sell them on ebay or sell them locally. Just don't give them to goodwill.
If nothing else maybe some of his family will want them.

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nancy2001
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Date: 11/25/11 1:57 PM

Thank you for all your suggestions. I'm not sure what I'll do at this point.

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petro
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Date: 11/26/11 3:17 AM

You learn something every day on PR. I never knew old quilts had a value. I have a couple of hand pieced ones (grandmother and mother) which I keep for sentimental reasons. I do like the fact that scraps of fabric were used, not specially purchased pieces, and feel that they're like a family scrap book. Looking at them I can see bits of summer curtain fabric we had, and mine and my sister's summer dress fabric, and - great sentimental tear jerker this one - bits of a cotton print which was one of those wrap round aprons housewives always had in WW2, which I remember my mother wearing when I was very young. One of these quilts is pretty worn through in places, but I can't chuck it. They used hexagons, cut the shapes out in brown paper, tacked the fabric round them, then placing RS together whip stitched the line closely.

Doris W. in TN
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In reply to petro


Date: 11/26/11 8:57 AM

Quote: petro
I never knew old quilts had a value.

It depends. I've bought some for $35 at antique malls that were in decent shape, so YMMV (your mileage may vary). The very first time I went to the AQS show in Paducah, I saw an antique quilts exhibit at the local civic/rotary club center. The quilts had prices in case anyone wanted to purchase. I asked the exhibitor why some quilts had higher prices than others when all other factors were equal. She was very nice and explained to me that the more expensive ones had initials, a year/date, or something that helped place the maker or year it was made.

After that, I faithfully put labels on all the quilts I made, including information about any quilt show ribbons awarded, just in case they have any value, long after I am gone.
*** Years ago, an AQS appraiser told me that any quilt show ribbon, including county or state fairs, adds to the value of a quilt.
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Date: 11/26/11 9:48 PM

I agree w the suggestion to get the quilt appraised. I have a friend that had her quilt appraised. It was embroidered as well as quilted, and it came out over $4,000! So don't assume it's worthless.
If you want to donate, you may be able to find a quilt museum that would be happy to receive it.

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