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The Bargello.
The Bargello.
Antonio del Pollaiolo Hercules and Antaeus, circa 1478
Antonio del Pollaiolo Hercules and Antaeus, circa 1478

The Bargello, also known as the Palazzo del Bargello, Museo Nazionale del Bargello, or Palazzo del Popolo (Palace of the People), is a former barracks and prison, now an art museum, in Florence, Italy.

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  • Make a Bargello Quilt with Jenny!
  • Museo del Bargello(FI)Visitato dal Prof.A.Paolucci
  • Como Fazer a Técnica Bargello
  • Bargello Quilting part 2 by ArbeeDesigns


Hi everybody, it’s Jenny from the MSQC. And I’ve got such a fun project for you today. I’m so excited about this because today we’re going to master the Bargello. So years ago, and I mean a lot of years, there was an Amish girl who came to our church and taught a class on the Bargello quilt. And it was one of those things that I thought I could never do and I did it. And then I’ve never done it since because it wasn’t really easy. So I wanted to make it easy and doable for you. And this really is an easy quilt once you tie it into a pre cut. So you can see I’m surrounded by them on the set here. And one of the reasons that is is because once we made one we had to see what another one looked like and another one looked like and everybody got really excited about it. And we started putting them together. I think there’s actually been about seven of them made. They’re so fun. So we’ve arranged this around a pre cut roll and that’s what makes it easier. Because for me the hard part was the color. So this is a purple one that we made. And it is, let’s see what color this is, Lavender Fields palette. This is our Lagoon palette right here. And this one over here is, is, is scraps and even the contrast fabric is scraps. And they did some different designs on this. So I’m going to show you how. And I just hope, I just hope that you love it because it makes the Bargello really easy and doable. So to make this quilt what you’re going to need is one roll of 2 ½ inch strips and we have used Lush Lagoon by Kona Cotton for Robert Kaufman. And you can see it’s beautiful. You’re also going to ¾ of a yard of a contrasting fabric and that’s this fabric right here or this fabric right here. But it’s ¾ of a yard of a contrasting fabric. And then we put a little border on this one right behind me, ¾ of a yard on this little border. Our binding, for the binding we just used leftover strips. So there’s enough to make it all. Alright so let’s get right into this. So when you’re ready to make your quilt, one of my favorite things about pre cuts is that they’re generally stacked in colorways, color families. And with these solid rolls you get from light to dark. And that’s done for you. So you may not know this but that’s a really hard thing for me. I have a hard time seeing shade differentiations. And I’ll be like, oh no this is lighter and then Natalie will say, no, no, no it’s not. You know and so they’ve done it for us. We open the roll and it rolls out like this. Then what you need is three strips of each color. So if you’re doing this with a patterned roll you don’t need exactly the same strips, you just need three reds and they can be different patterns. You know three blues, three greens, this sort of thing. And so we’ve got three of each marked. And if you have one like this one where it has four, you’re just going to pull that extra one off like this and you’re going to use that for your binding. That’s going to be part of your binding so we’ll just slide this guy out of here and he’s going to be part of our binding. Alright now just how they come off. You can see right here. Just how they come off the roll, we’re going to sew them together that way in long strip sets. One, we’re going to take one strip from each color grouping and we’re going to sew them together. So we’re going to take one from the one just like this. We’re going to make three strip sets basically is what I’m trying to tell you here. So we’re going to take one of these and one of the next one and one of the next one and we’re going to sew those together up one side, down the other and make strip sets. One through 12 colors from dark to light. And I’ve got one right here that I’m going to show you. Let me just move this over here. So here’s our dark to light strip set. Alright. You’re going to make three of these. Now the first two we’re going to leave big and we’re going to put, cut a nine inch piece from our contrasting fabric and put it right in the middle of two of these. The third strip we’re going to cut in half. So that it becomes a long strip set as well. And it’s just going to help add to the width of our quilt. So what we’re going to do now, we’ve used a dark contrast so we’re going to take that and we’re going to put that to our lightest strip. So here we are with our lightest strip so we have one through 12, light to dark. And we’re going to have one through 12, light to dark on this side as well. So let me show you, I’ve got my small strip over here that I’ve cut in half. And it’s right over here. Alright so this is cut in half and we’re going to add our small, our nine inch piece right to the middle of it. So we’re going to go light to dark this way and light to dark this way. Now before we do this I want to tell you one thing. There are, if you sew them together one through 12 on both sides you’re going to have two darks that meet in the middle because eventually this is going to be a tube. And so you only want to put the darkest dark on one side. So that will make more sense in a minute. But let’s go over to the sewing machine. I’m going to lay this right on here and we’re going to sew this side and we’re going to sew it to the other side as well. So we’re going to sew a quarter of an inch down the side. The quarter of an inch is pretty important in this. It’s not important that it’s perfect; it’s important that you’re consistent. So let’s go ahead and sew this down. Just like this. And then we’re going to take our other strip set and sew it right to the other side. You’re going to do this on your big one as well. So there’s that one. And we’re going to take this one right here, line it up on the edge and sew it to that side. So here we are. We’re going to sew this right along here. Alright. Make sure they stay nice and lined up. And watch your quarter of an inch. Alright, now we’re going to press this. And when I press this I, you know you can press it anyway you want because basically when you start putting them together you’re going to have to press, repress your strips so they go in opposite directions. So you’re just going to iron this so that it lays nice and flat because you’ll have to re-iron when you, when we cut the strips, you’ll iron them all going one direction or the other. So now you’ll see on this one. So I have one through 11 on this side and one through 12 on this side. This is that dark strip I was talking about. You want to make sure that you don’t have two dark strips at the top, just one. And we’re going to sew these together to form a tube. So lay it up there. If you put your fabrics together and they’re the same, you need to take one off. Alright we’re going to sew a quarter of an inch right down the side on here. Alrighty, there we go. Now you have an enclosed tube. Now I have done that to this one and I’ve also done it to the big one. So here’s my other large strip set and we went ahead and sewed our nine inch piece in there as well. Now you need to do your cutting. And you’re going to cut from all of, it’s going to take both of these pieces to make your quilt. So you’re going to cut from both of them. Now what I like to do is I like to fold mine in half twice. So I make sure that’s nice and flat. I bring this up and make sure it’s nice and flat. And it’s laying even and everything is nice. If you have any trouble at all or any wrinkles or rumples or anything like that you can just open it up and cut it long. I would never take the chance to cut this if I didn’t, if I wasn’t sure that it was like straight. So I make sure that this seam line is lining up right along my mat. And if you need to clean up your edge, clean up your edge. I’m a fan of starting with a nice fresh cut. So I’m going to clean this up right here. Alright so now you have to know what to cut because these strip sets are all cut in different sizes. So you will get a little chart like this. And it will tell you exactly how many to cut. So basically what we’re going to do is we’re going to cut three three inch pieces, 13 two inch strips, 14 1 ½ inch strips, and four one inch strips. So what we’re going to do is I’m going to come over here and I’m going to cut a couple of two inch strips right here. And move that out of the way and one more. Because the first two on our chart that we’re going to sew together our two inches. Now what I did was I went ahead and I sewed them all so I have them here in piles. So this is my inch. This is my inch and a half. And I just stacked them all up. This is my two inchers and this is my three inchers. Once you get those all cut then the sewing goes really fast. And it’s fun to see what happens. So the first two strips, let me show you how this is going to work. The first two strips, we go right the way we sewed the quilt together originally. So we go from dark to light and light to dark. So we’re going to take that apart right here at the dark line. And I’m just going to give that a little pull and it’s going to come right apart. So just like that is our first strip. Our second strip is going to be just one less than that. So what you’re going to do, here’s your chart. Oop hang on I can’t pick it up there. So here’s your chart. And the first one, you’ll see it starts with that lighter color, number 11. So we’re going to have it this way because that’s our lightest one. Our darkest one is down here. And then we’re going to add the next one to it. When I look at the chart. You just notice that it only moves one step so see here, this is the same, move up one step. I’m going to pull this up, whoop. Hey guys can you grab that for me, I just flipped it off the table. Alright so you’re going to, you’re going to pull this up here. And then I’m just going to take these apart right here. Thank you, Misty. Alright, so, do you see how that is going. So then you’re going to look at your chart again. Your chart tells you, it has the little number on the side of the strip right in the, in the contrasting fabric. And so you need one, two, three, four, two’s and they stair step up. So we’re going to get four two’s . I’m going to show you just how these go together. So I’m going to lay this one here. Watch it as it graduates up. Take this apart, lay it just like that. And get one more here, just like that. It goes all the way up and you take this apart. Now at anytime in this process you can start sewing your strips together. So now I’m going to go ahead and lay a bunch out so you can see what we’re talking about. And you can see the movement and I’ll be right back. So you can see how cool this is looking. You can see the rise and the beginning of the fall. And it’s just going to go together so cool. Now you can continue to lay out your pieces so that your whole quilt is laid out and then you’re going to sew them together. Now when I sewed my rows together I put them right sides together like this. And you want to make sure that your seams nest up. This is where that quarter of an inch seam comes in and is important. So one row you need to make sure that all your seams are ironed one way and on the other row they’re all ironed the opposite. So I’m going to take my first, my first strip here and I’m going to iron them all going down. So I’m over here at the ironing board and they’re all going to go down. And really you only have to iron one half because half your strip is already going to be right. So these are all going down and I’m going to set it back there. And then I’m going to take my next strip iron them all going up. So just, just like that. Now you’re going to lay these right on top of each other. Make sure your pattern is still in the right place. Wait a minute I bet I turned that around. So you’re going to make sure your pattern is still in the right place. There’s my pattern. I can still see the movement. Lay these right on top of each other. And then every one of these seams is going to nest up as you go along. And that’s important in keeping your pattern together. So let’s sew these together. Again we’re going to sew a quarter of an inch . And we’re just going to sew down the side. Just like this. Match up your little seams. Alrighty and just like that we’ve got the first two sewn together. Let’s head over to the ironing board and press these open. And I’m just going to press these so that the seam stays all going one direction underneath. And that’s pretty easy if you lay it on and then just kind of roll the top back. Alright now you’re just going to add the next strip to it. So you’re going to put it back on here, make sure your, your colors are all going in the right direction. And then you’ll add the next one on. And you’ll just continue to add, add, add and watch your chart because it will tell you whether to move them up or down or how you want to go. So the fun comes in when you realize that you have control of that up or down. You can make it go and do whatever you want it to do. And in very short order you’re going to have a quilt that looks like this. And you’re just going to be so amazed that you did it. That’s the fun part to me. You look at it, you’re just like I can’t believe I did that. It looks so cool. So good luck with your Bargello. I hope you make all your friends Bargellas with your Bargello. And we hope you enjoyed this tutorial on the Bargello quilt from the MSQC.



The word bargello appears to come from the late Latin bargillus (from Gothic bargi and German burg), meaning "castle" or "fortified tower". During the Italian Middle Ages it was the name given to a military captain in charge of keeping peace and justice (hence "Captain of justice") during riots and uproars. In Florence he was usually hired from a foreign city to prevent any appearance of favoritism on the part of the Captain. The position could be compared with that of a current Chief of police. The name Bargello was extended to the building which was the office of the captain.

The palace

Stairs and inner courtyard.
Stairs and inner courtyard.
Inner courtyard.
Inner courtyard.

Construction began in 1255. The palace was built to house first the Capitano del Popolo and later, in 1261, the 'podestà', the highest magistrate of the Florence City Council. This Palazzo del Podestà, as it was originally called, is the oldest public building in Florence. This austere crenellated building served as model for the construction of the Palazzo Vecchio. In 1574, the Medici dispensed with the function of the Podestà and housed the bargello, the police chief of Florence, in this building, hence its name.[1] It was employed as a prison; executions took place in the Bargello's yard until they were abolished by Grand Duke Peter Leopold in 1786, but it remained the headquarters of the Florentine police until 1859. When Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor Peter Leopold was exiled, the makeshift Governor of Tuscany decided that the Bargello should no longer be a jail, and it then became a national museum.

The original two-storey structure was built alongside the Volognana Tower in 1256. The third storey, which can be identified by the smaller blocks used to construct it, was added after the fire of 1323. The building is designed around an open courtyard with an external staircase leading to the second floor. An open well is found in the centre of the courtyard.[1]

The Bargello opened as a national museum (Museo Nazionale del Bargello) in 1865,[1] displaying the largest Italian collection of gothic and Renaissance sculptures (14–17th century).

Art collection

The museum houses masterpieces by Michelangelo, such as his Bacchus, Pitti Tondo (or Madonna and Child), Brutus and David-Apollo.[2] Its collection includes Donatello's David and St. George Tabernacle[3] , Vincenzo Gemito's Pescatore ("fisherboy"),[4] Jacopo Sansovino's Bacchus,[2] Giambologna's Architecture[5] and his Mercury[2] and many works from the Della Robbia family.[3][6][7][8] Benvenuto Cellini is represented with his bronze bust of Cosimo I.[2] There are a few works from the Baroque period, notably Gianlorenzo Bernini's 1636-7 Bust of Costanza Bonarelli.

The museum also has a fine collection of ceramics (maiolica), textile, tapestries, ivory, silver, armour and coins. The formerly lost right-hand panel of the Franks Casket is held by the museum. It also features the competing designs for The Sacrifice of Isaac (Sacrificio di Isacco) that were made by Lorenzo Ghiberti[3] and Filippo Brunelleschi[3] to win the contest for the second set of doors of the Florence Baptistery (1401).

Honolulu Hale's interior courtyard, staircase, and open ceiling were modeled after the Bargello.[9]

The Islamic Hall at the Bargello was set up in 1982 by Marco Spallanzani and Giovanni Curatola at the direction of Paola Barocchi and Giovanna Gaeta Bertelà, then the director.[10]



  1. ^ a b c Zucconi, Guido (1995). Florence: An Architectural Guide (November 2001 Reprint ed.). San Giovanni Lupatoto, Verona, Italy: Arsenale Editrice. p. 38. ISBN 88-7743-147-4.
  2. ^ a b c d "Sala di Michelangelo e della scultura del Cinquecento". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  3. ^ a b c d "Salone di Donatello e della Scultura del Quattrocento". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  4. ^ "Il Cortile". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  5. ^ "Verone". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  6. ^ "Cappella di Maria Maddalena e Sagrestia". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  7. ^ "Sala di Giovanni della Robbia". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  8. ^ "Sala di Andrea della Robbia". Bargello National Museum. Ministry of Cultural Heritage. Archived from the original on June 6, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  9. ^ "Historic Honolulu (The Capitol District)". City and County of Honolulu. October 10, 2003. Archived from the original on November 19, 2004. Retrieved July 24, 2006.
  10. ^ "A Firenze in mostra l'arte islamica - TgTourism". (in Italian). Retrieved 2018-10-06.

External links

This page was last edited on 31 October 2018, at 22:24
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