Monday, April 2, 2012

Quilting-A Lost Art?

Is quilting a lost art?

My mama made her first quilt when she was 8 years old.  I have it now.  I suppose it was made from some of their dresses which were then made from flour sacks.  Mama said they would go to town and pick out the flour sack they liked because they knew they would eventually wear it:)

Does anyone know what this is called?

It was my mama's desire to quilt each of her six grandchildren one for their graduation from high school.  This is my daughter's quilt.  It was made from scraps of mama's dresses.  I can remember each one.  I think she called this one a "Pinwheel."

She completed all, but one.  She started the last grandchild's quilt, pieced it together, but never got around to putting the batten or backing on it.

This is my favorite one, "The Flower Garden," because it is made of fabric from four generations-my granny's "frocks", my mama's dresses, my scooter skirts (remember those?) and my baby girl's and nieces's sundresses.

Last year when the estate was settled, we drew straws and divided everything equally.  The quilts and mama's paintings were the most valuable-the value that can't be bargained for, bought or sold.

This one was on my Daddy's bed the day that he died.  It still smells like him.

I've read stories of how the ladies in times past got together to quilt.  It was their entertainment, their time of sharing joys and sorrows.  From what I hear, the kids would sit under the frame and listen to the stories.  It's where they learned the lessons of life and even about the "birds and the bees."

Mama had a big wooden quilting frame that she bought from someone.  She mounted it to the ceiling in my bedroom after I left home and that was her way of forgetting about the troubles in life. Maybe quilting helped her to adjust to having her second child leave home.  Something happens when your children grow up and go.  You begin to think about your own mortality and how you might leave some kind of legacy.

My mama left us a legacy of love-not just in the quilts she pieced together by hand, but in all she did.  I never learned to sew or quilt, but I hope I'll leave the same legacy of love and service to my children and grandchildren.  My mama taught my niece to quilt.  Maybe the art wasn't lost completely.

I'd like to know how many of you, my friendly bloggers, know how to quilt?  I'd like to hear your stories.

  By the way, the above quilt is one I found at an estate sale.  It is in pristine condition.  Buy it from my Etsy shop.  Vintagegirl901.


  1. One of my blogging buddies at Serendipity is a quilter. Your mom's quilts are true treasures Bonnie. I sure do wish I could sew. Hey I found you a cloche today.

  2. The quilts your Mom passed down are a wonderful way to connect generations. My grandmother was a quilter in the days when many of the women gathered together for the day for a "quilting bee." I am fortunate to have several of hers that were passed down. They were in pristine condition because for some reason they were kept in a chest and not used!
    Anyway, I think it's wonderful to have these treasures to give to your children.
    Thanks for stopping by, Mary Alice

  3. Hi Bonnie: I did make a quilt for my son when he was a baby. I sewed together the squares but I just tied it off with yarn. I didn't actually quilt it. Wish I still had it. I have a top that my great-grandmother put together, I believe it's called the postage stamp pattern, made out of old dresses, I'm sure, but it never was finished and sits in a cupboard with me now. Maybe someday.....Happy Monday..Judy

  4. Dear Bonnie, I think people still quilt, but differently. My mother quilted with a group of friends for awhile. Yes we did congregate under the frame. Have you read How to Make an American Quilt? I think you might enjoy it. I have machine quilted small pieces, but not a full quilt. Don't ever part with your quilts. Bonnie

  5. My quilts are worn and frayed from much use. There's nothing that fills better on a cold night than to snuggle with one of mama quilts. They are now put away, but once in awhile I like to take them out and hold them close and smell them. Oh, my eyes are getting misty-gotta stop this now!

  6. Such pretty quilts, and so neat how they are made from clothing. Thanks for visiting me at The Latest Find and for your kind comment! I'm a new follower. =)

  7. Thanks, Ashley. I am loving all my new friends!

  8. Thanks, Ashley. I am loving all my new friends!

  9. Thanks for your sweet comment on my house post! I love reading your blog, too!

  10. I love quilts, and loved your telling of your mother's quilts. Lots of men and women still quilt, but I love the old fashioned quilts done by hand with all cotton fabrics and batts and many stitches. The last quilt I worked on is unfinished in a closet. Just before I last took it off the frame an older man who did some work for us around the house told me my quilting reminded him of his mother.(I was about thirty at the time.) It was a bit disconcerting, but he meant it in a good way. Haha. Quilting as a way of life is gone of course, but I'm sure lots of positive things besides the finished product came out of it. Your heirlooms are really wonderful.

  11. This is just wonderful.
    What a beautiful legacy.
    Those are my favorite family belongings.
    Have a wonderful Easter-

    White Spray Paint

  12. Mrs. Doris left you treasures in so many areas of your life, Bonnie!

    I made a quilt for Kristin's first birthday (1997); it is really pretty. I actually pieced it and had someone else do the QUILTING part. I loved designing & piecing it. For Momma's 50th birthday I designed one that included b/w photographs of our family and had someone else quilt it. I will again --- in a new season of my life.

    I'm so proud of you and your business! If you run across the "birdcage" with the with children again, please save it for me. :) I searched Etsy for your quilt, but did not find your page.

    Cheering for you -- tdg

  13. the only thing about quilts is that i love them! your mom's quilts are just beautiful, bonnie!


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