Thursday, March 2, 2017

My first quilt

To the best of my recollection, this is the first quilt I ever made. It was the early '70s, no one I knew was doing actual quilting, i.e., piecing traditional patterns like Burgoyne Surrounded or Dresden Plate. The Lutheran ladies "quilted" for World Relief, but what they did involved using large pieces of material, squares or strips that were sewn together quickly and then tied as comforters, even though everyone called them quilts. I bought a McCall's magazine with traditional (or close to traditional) quilt patterns in it and proceeded to teach myself, more or less, how to quilt. The pattern for my first quilt was, I think, called Night and Noon; 45 years ago the color contrasts for the smaller pieces were a lot more vivid than they are now. When I look at it now, of course, I can see the gazillion mistakes I made, the weird puckering with the border, the mismatched points, and various other problems. On the other hand. . .

I gave the quilt to my mother, and it's spent most of the past four decades on her bed. I guess somewhere along the line I should have given her a couple more so she could rotate them so this one wouldn't have gotten so thoroughly worn out, but for some reason I never did. I did knit her several afghans, but that's not quite the same thing.

Not surprisingly,  the quilt has gotten more than a tad faded. It's also worn threadbare in places. One particular fabric seems to have been particularly prone to sun bleaching and dry rot. It was bright red in a bandanna paisley pattern back in 1972; now it's threadbare and so faded it's hard to believe it was once red. It's a lot more faded in real life than it looks like in the photo. I took the quilt when my sister and I cleaned out our mother's apartment. I'll be spending the next several days patching the torn pieces and doing repairs as best I can. The batting has gotten flattened to the point of virtual nonexistence over the past 40+ years but there isn't much I can do about that with just a week or two to work in. We're going back up to Grand Junction later this month, and I'll bring the repaired quilt with me. If we're all lucky, my mother will get a few more years use out of it.

No comments:

Post a Comment

My space, my rules: play nice and keep it on topic.