LAURA FISHER/Antique Quilts & Americana is a world-renowned New York City shop that houses the largest, most diverse collection of antique quilts in the United States. Dating from the late 18th through the mid-20th century, measuring from doll size to king size, the selection includes examples from all across the country, as well as from England and France.
Americana is Fisher's focus, so in the shop are all her favorites -- hooked rugs, rag woven carpet, jacquard coverlets, handwoven blankets, paisley shawls, Navajo weavings, Beacon/Pendleton blankets, samplers and needlework, decorative and utilitarian textiles and objects such as, tramp art, and objects such as lamps and frames, and choice American folk art.
Pieces are included in the inventory if they meet these criteria: they are "best of kind" examples in excellent condition; they are "classics with a twist" that sets them apart from similar examples that can be found across the country; or they are of unique graphic appeal or historic interest.
Her clients are people from around the world who admire Americana but are not necessarily purist Americana collectors. Either they use quilts as intended originally on beds, or purchase quilts to display on walls like the works of art they are. Examples from the shop are also in museums and corporate collections.
Design magazines have praised the shop for its "well-edited selection", its "affordable prices", and "the helpful service" of its knowledgeable, ebullient owner and staff.
If you are not able to come to New York City, the website offers just a glimpse of the variety of patterns and choices. Contact us if there is a specific quilt you don't see here, or if you want to see more selections within any category. We'll be happy to send photos and information, and to undertake a search to find the quilt you are looking for.
An author and editor, Fisher has written extensively about textiles and folk art. Due out this August is QUILTS 2004, a new desk calendar featuring antique quilts, to be published and available through Barnes & Noble, or from Laura's shop.
Her most recent book is HOME SWEET HOME: THE HOUSE IN AMERICAN FOLK ART, featuring architectural images in quilts, hooked rugs, samplers, paintings, furniture and folk art (Rizzoli, 2001). Concentrating on quilts only are QUILTS OF ILLUSION: Optical Illusion Design in Antique Quilts (Sterling Publishing/Main Street, 1988, and AMERICA'S GLORIOUS QUILTS, Duke and Harding Editors (Hugh Lauter Levin, 1989)
Laura is a regular contributor of articles and material to Country Living Magazine and the leading design, interiors and country periodicals. She is a frequent guest on Martha Stewart Living Television bringing historic information and beautiful examples for viewers to relish. Antiques from the shop appear frequently in the pages of Architectural Digest, House Beautiful, Country Living, Victoria, House and Garden, Country Home, etc.
She is available to lecture anywhere about quilts, textiles and antiques collecting in general, as she has done before such groups as The Appraisers Association of America, the American Folk Art Museum, the Cooper Hewitt Museum, New York Univerisity, the New School University, and the Nippon Society.
As part of the shop's services, written appraisals, and textile restoration services for quilts and hooked rugs are available.