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Thursday, August 10, 2006

Confessions of a Newbie Quilter



My current project: a baby quilt

The quilting bug just bit me a month ago. I feel like a part of women's history when I work on a quilt. My grandmother has always quilted, and she made a quilt for each of her children and grandchildren, as well as a number for herself. They're all beautiful, though many of them are very different. My brother's quilt is very masculine. It was made in the early- to mid-1970s, before I was even born. Grandma used scraps from my grandfather's wool suits, winter coats, and corduroy slacks and sportcoats. She did intricate hand stitching along all the seams. This quilt must have been a labor of love, since I can't imagine working with all those scratchy, heavy, hot materials could have been all that fun, especially since most of Grandma's quilts feature bright, cheery calicos or dreamy pastels.

I'll have to unearth photos of some of my grandmother's quilts to post. She still quilts, even though she now lives in a Sunrise assisted living center. There's no room for a big quilting frame in her single room, which just happens to have been my uncle's kindergarten classroom -- the building used to be an elementary school :-). Now she's back to handquilting after many years of using the machine. I admire her; she's lived through so much. Now she fills her days with crafting, reading newspapers, and playing cards. She churns out a prodigious amount of embroidered flour sack dishtowels! Every time I see her I leave with a couple more to add to my collection.

1 comment:

Lynn S. said...

I have enjoyed reading a number of your blog entries and love those dish cloths! I collect vintage dish towels because I enjoy looking at the fibers and embroideries on them. I could see myself knitting a few dish cloths, to be honest. How large is the finished piece?

I hope you stick with the quilting because it is a timeless art and craft. Maybe you can post some of your grandmother's quilts soon? I'd love to see what she created.

Your knitting is good and you get to use what you're doing. I started out large when I decided to teach myself to knit....I began with an afghan using an Icelandic pattern. It's beautiful, even for something that a beginner did, because of the colors.

I've been a quilter for more than half my life. Stop by and see what I've been doing lately, Jodi!