In September 2019, I took a class called “Map Making with Fabrics” which was hosted by the Central Jersey Modern Quilt Guild. The instructor was Timna Tarr. I learned about Timna’s map quilts on Instagram several years ago. I was intrigued by her quilts and wanted to learn the technique. When I read about Timna coming to New Jersey, I made a point of registering for her class.
The students have to bring a paper map to class to use as inspiration. Since I am from Newark, New Jersey, I searched for a map of the city. I found a map of part of the city from 1889. Since the map is that old, it is in the public domain. I had the map printed as a 24” x 36” poster because I intend to place the map in a frame.
When I was in class I noticed that the map’s orientation is actually incorrect. North is not at the top of the map. Here’s the map’s correct orientation and the “My Fair City” Quilt.
Because I refer to Newark as “My Fair City”, I used that phrase as my quilt’s name. I used different fabrics to highlight the neighborhoods (the red numbers and boundary lines) that are featured on my paper map. Newark’s nickname is “Brick City.” I used a brick red fabric to represent the major streets and avenues. The black fabric lines are the railroad tracks. The turquoise fabric represents the various waterways. I used a grid design to quilt the neighborhoods to represent the smaller streets. The white fabric represents the area that was not a part of Newark, New Jersey in 1889.
Thank you for reading.