I'm wondering if it's a similar sort of thing to a pegged rag rug?
For those you push strips of fabric through one side of a piece of Hessian cloth and then bring them out to the front again, using a wooden clothes peg (pin?).
My Gran made one and it was really hard wearing - it was very pretty and lasted for donkeys years.
Could you post a couple of links to the sites where you've seen the quilts please? - then I'll know if we're talking about the same thing?
All the Best
(the other one)