"H" variation (quiltmaker's name: "Milky Way")

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    Photo: Stephen Pitkin/Pitkin Studio
88 x 77 inches
Collection of
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Museum purchase and gift of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation

In 1968, the Freedom Quilting Bee began working with New York craft marketer Stanley Selengut, who took quilt samples to Bloomingdale's and returned to Gee's Bend with a twenty-thousand dollar order. He had a designer, Sara Stein, devise new patterns in consultation with Bloomingdale's—some based on contemporary abstract art—and work with the quiltmaker's to achieve consistent standards of productions. Among Stein's designs was a pattern called "Milky Way," featuring contrasting circles within squares. Nettie Young combined this pattern with a more traditional "H" pattern.