Thursday, September 10, 2015

TBT - Why I Quilt

Blame it on The Mama!
My mother always sewed.  She also knitted, and needlepointed, and cross stitched, and macramé-ed, and whatever the craft-of-the-day was.  She was a lifetime Girl Scout and trained leaders in all these crafts.  (Daddy Bill was also a Girl Scout - he trained leaders in outdoor skills like cooking over an open fire.)

It took the quilting revival leading up to the Bicentennial for The Mama to jump into quilting.  Unfortunately she passed away late in 1979 so her quilting career was short lived.  In the intervening years she finished four quilts -- one was a cross-stitched whole-cloth top which she paid to have hand quilted, and the other three were quilt-as-you-go.

She was a Georgia Bonesteel, lap quilting/quilt-as-you go kinda gal.  That technique appealed to her because she could work on small sections as she and Daddy Bill traveled around the world.  And when it was done, it was done.

So it's no surprise that the only UFO she left behind was a pieced quilt.

Bicentennial Sampler - Quilter's Newsletter 1975-76

She pieced some by hand ...

... and some by machine.

I suspect the machine blocks are later when she was probably pushing to "getterdone" because the quality of workmanship is not up to her standards.  

I decided to learn to quilt so I could finish it.  But I had two boys to raise and a job to put them (and myself) through college and life just got in the way.  It was 20 years before I finally got serious about this dream.

Then I discovered it was not nearly as close to finish as I had thought!  Whereas the pattern was to be a periodic feature in Quilter's Newsletter Magazine, she only had the issues with the intro and the first two patterns!

 But it appears she chose to start on a couple of the other blocks first.

As you can imagine, the fabrics are mostly polyester and the quality .... well, you can almost see right through it!

Trees as seen through the fabric
The fabric is chintzy, the blocks aren't square.  Can you understand why it's still unfinished in the box?  I WILL do something with it, if only a 4-block wall hanging, as a memorial to the woman who was everyone's BFF.

 I'll be linking up with Krista Quilts for Throwback Thursday.
Apologies for the sideways pics - I'm out of town with only the tablet and haven't figured out how to edit photos on it yet.


  1. How fortunate you are to have something that your mother obviously put her heart into, She deserves a memorial for her determination. Good luck with that.

  2. What a great story, Libby. And what a gift to have something she stitched by hand. I have a top hand stitched by my great grandmother that I want to hand quilt, but I'm so afraid I'm going to do something to ruin it. Sometimes we just need to jump in with both feet!

  3. I love the colours your mother picked for this quilt. It will be a lovely memorial when you finish it. Thanks for linking up at Throwback Thursday today.

  4. Such a treasure! It's not perfect, but it looks like she was having fun. Hopefully one day you find a way to finish it.


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