Souls Grown Deep Custom Prints

Gearldine Westbrook

"Housetop" variation (detail), 1982

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Gearldine Westbrook (1919–2016), "Housetop" variation (detail), 1982

Corduroy and cotton, 94 x 78 in.; Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Museum purchase and gift of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation

Gearldine Westbrook’s 1982 sixteen-block “Housetop” quilt is typical of its time. It is made entirely of Sears corduroy obtained from the Freedom Quilting Bee, with its dominant colors called “avocado leaf” and “cherry red” in the Sears catalog. Westbrook was in her sixties when she made the quilt, older than most women who undertook to work with corduroy, and she never used the quilt. She remembers making it because “I just want to see if l can do it.”

about the collection

In 1972, the Freedom Quilting Bee, a sewing cooperative based in Alberta, Alabama, near Gee's Bend, secured a contract with Sears, Roebuck, to produce corduroy pillow covers. Made of wide-wale cotton corduroy, the covers came in a variety of colors, including "gold," "avocado leaf," "tangerine," and "cherry red." Production of the Sears pillow covers left little room for personal creativity, as labor at the Freedom Quilting Bee was divided to maximize daily output. Yet despite the standardized and repetitive process involved in producing the pillow covers, the availability of corduroy, a fabric seldom used before by the Gee's Bend quiltmakers, stimulated a profound creative response. Leftover lengths and scraps of corduroy were taken home by workers at the Bee. Given to friends and family or bundled for sale within the community, the scraps were then transformed from standardized remnants into vibrant and individualized works of art.

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About Our Prints


Souls Grown Deep Custom Prints offers custom reproductions of artworks by Souls Grown Deep artists. Hand-made in the USA using gallery-quality materials, we create prints as true to the original work as possible, using strict color management protocols and state-of-the-art printing technology.


Many of the works offered through this store are exclusive and not available anywhere else. We are continually adding new artworks to our offering, so be sure to check back regularly as you build your own gallery.