Okay, so this is not a very useful comment, but: I am obsessed with quilted petticoats. Someday when I have nothing on my plate I'm going to do one.
Yes!! I want to start quilting them, too. They are a New England staple, and quite easy to do ... it's just time consuming. I can't imagine tracing out a drawing on them is easy, either, unless you're REALLY good at eyeballing proportions. I'd start very simply, with a diamond pattern!
I feel like getting a really big piece of paper and drawing out one repeat on it, then pricking the lines and powdering it with ... cinnamon, I think brocadegoddess suggested? would work pretty well, but it would take for. ever. to put pins through a whole pattern. TBH I would probably measure the size of the repeat and draw/baste lines to mark each one out, then mark where each horizontal bit on the pattern should intersect those lines, then freehand what's in between ...No, I need to stop planning all this out! I have too much sewing to do!
I'll have to ask the ladies in a couple of weeks how they did it. The petticoat we're working on as a big group project is to be auctioned off, and is a beeaaautiful pale blue-green silk. So it will be nice to have a hand in that. Someone's hubby built a frame (I think), and it's awesome and big! The pattern is drawn on with quilter's chalk, but the question remains ... drawn on by eyeballing, or ... something else?? I will check out that link, thank you! Now, back to sewing, you!!