Most quilts contain a multitude of prints, the smaller designs more often called callicoes. Quilters find that one of the joys of owning a quilt is trying to date its fabrics as well as learn which mill or company might have produced them. Shown here are a selection of Rondo prints, a house name for fabrics offered by J.C. Penny.
They appear chronologically from 1942-60 but unfortunately are not year specific. As Rondo was advertised as early as 1930, it’s possible some of the prints featured here might have been in production earlier than 1942 or later than 1960; Rondo was still in production in 1980. Looking at them one can visualize aprons, school clothes and housedresses asking to be made. Rondo is a plain weave [with the exception of the green and white fine twill in photo 1] top-of -the line 140 count muslin, often referred to as standard cloth. It feels and handles like today’s craft broadcloths.
Our thanks to Shirley McElderry for use of her collection.
Part II: E&W’s Quaker Chintz Prints and Peerless 80 sq. percalesPart III: Any Powder Puffs or DayLee in Your Quilts? The arbitrary cut-off date for this Vintage Fabric column is 1960.
To stay within the scope of this timeframe, reference materials published up to that date are the prime source of information to more accurately capture actual thoughts of the time.
Joan Kiplinger is an antique doll costumer and vintage fabric addict who learned to sew on her grandmother’s treadle and has been peddling fabrications ever since.