What Is It?

I finished the outline work on the new whole cloth quilt.  Several people have been guessing what it is.   Let me start by talking about Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
(information from Wikipedia, since it has been 30 years since art history class 🙂 )

Mackintosh was a Scottish architect, designer, water colorist and artist. He was a designer in the post impressionist movement and also the main representative of Art Nouveau in the United Kingdom.


Mackintosh lived most of his life in the city of Glasgow. During the Industrial Revolution the city had one of the greatest production centres of heavy engineering and shipbuilding in the world. As the city grew and prospered, a faster response to the high demand for consumer goods and arts was necessary. Industrialized, mass-produced items started to gain popularity. Along with the Industrial Revolution, Asian style and emerging modernist ideas also influenced Mackintosh’s designs. When the Japanese isolationist regime softened, they opened themselves to globalization resulting in notable Japanese influence around the world. Glasgow’s link with the eastern country became particularly close with shipyards building at the River Clyde being exposed to Japanese navy and training engineers. Japanese design became more accessible and gained great popularity. In fact, it became so popular and so incessantly appropriated and reproduced by Western artists, that the Western World’s fascination and preoccupation with Japanese art gave rise to the new term, Japonism or Japonisme.

This style was admired by Mackintosh because of: its restraint and economy of means rather than ostentatious accumulation; its simple forms and natural materials rather than elaboration and artifice; the use of texture and light and shadow rather than pattern and ornament. In the old western style, furniture was seen as ornament that displayed the wealth of its owner and the value of the piece was established according to the length of time spent creating it. In the Japanese arts furniture and design focused on the quality of the space, which was meant to evoke a calming and organic feeling to the interior.

At the same time a new philosophy concerned with creating functional and practical design was emerging throughout Europe: the so-called “modernist ideas”. The main concept of the Modernist movement was to develop innovative ideas and new technology: design concerned with the present and the future, rather than with history and tradition. Heavy ornamentation and inherited styles were discarded. Even though Mackintosh became known as the ‘pioneer’ of the movement, his designs were far removed from the bleak utilitarianism of Modernism. His concern was to build around the needs of people: people seen, not as masses, but as individuals who needed not a machine for living in but a work of art. Mackintosh took his inspiration from his Scottish upbringing and blended them with the flourish of Art Nouveau and the simplicity of Japanese forms. While working in architecture, Mackintosh developed his own style: a contrast between strong right angles and floral-inspired decorative motifs with subtle curves, e.g. the Mackintosh Rose motif.


The design is also often referred to as the Glasgow Rose.

I did not want to simply reproduce one of his designs but use his work as an inspiration.

Here are a few more pictures of the hand quilting in progress (click pictures to enlarge)

The next step is to add the color….more on that soon

Happy Quilting


24 thoughts on “What Is It?

  1. kathi says:

    Think CRM wouold have loved your design! …and what might he have come up with if he had Teddy for his inspiration (and Muse)??

  2. Jan Marriott says:

    thought you might like to see my windows…another interpretation though not quite as elegant as the original


  3. Lori Baker says:

    I can’t wait to see it!

  4. Chrisanna says:

    Wonderful post with great history, Tim. I learned a lot here.. What you create will beautiful.💜

  5. Sandy says:

    You are such an inspiration and are blessed with such a creative mind. Looking forward to seeing the progress. Thought I recognized in it a stained glass pattern which looks like a rose bud. Love the stained glass windows Jan Marriott shared.

    Quilts, stained glass & pottery are my favorite things!

  6. Sandra B says:

    Thanks, Tim, for the background information….love how your quilt is evolving…looking forward to seeing it come to life as you add color. Thanks to Jan for sharing the stained glass pictures…beautiful! Teddy looks handsome, as always!!

  7. Tamie says:

    I immediately recognized the Mackintosh rose from the first sketch! Must of been all those semesters of art and architectural history or the visit to Glasgow. I can’t wait to see it come together.

  8. jean says:

    thank you for sharing your inspiration. I recognized the rose, but not it’s origins. Love learning more, thanks!

  9. suzette shoulders says:

    Tim, I have always called that the ‘Mackintosh Rose’, and noticed when I travelled in the north of England, I saw it everywhere! Most houses seemed to have a rose on the window in the front door in the part of Manchester I was in, and we noticed that rose again and again in Lancaster, as well. I have an applique quilt in progress with a self-designed Mackintosh Rose. I bet your whole cloth quilt will be done before my WIP applique project! Suzette in Oregon, who hopes to make it to Scotland someday!

  10. Tim….I am Scottish from the Highlands and my first thought was:” That looks like a Charles Rennie Mackintosh” ….I really enjoy following your blog! Looking forward to the colouring in 🙂

  11. glendajean says:

    Ohhh Tim I knew it was going to be exciting journey but this is wonderful. I have loved the Mackintosh Rose since I was a child but did not know the history behind them.!!!!! Your quilt is going to blow every one away and I hope to see it hanging in a show. That wonderful cabinet is to die for how beautiful and elegant is the shape of the lady and holding a rose too. Of course I think the cabinet is just as elegant; fancy been able to live with that every day. Glenda Australia.

  12. Lorij says:

    Tim, your quilt is going to be wonderful. Jan’s windows are just absolutely lovely. So kind of her to share.


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