Monday, June 6, 2011

Keeping It In The Family

Today I want to share a quilt that my Grandmother just gave me. This is my Dad's Mom whose farm land it is that we all live on. She is 85 and still lives by herself in her farmhouse. She is right up the road from all of us and has chickens that she loves and takes care of. She also grows many flowers and a little garden. She spends most of her time outside. I spent much of my childhood at her house with my cousins and brother and sister.

She had to have a little surgery last week and told me to come and get this quilt. She said that she was afraid she would drop dead and my Mother might throw this quilt in the dump before I could get it. (my mother has been known to throw antique quilts in a dumpster) Needless, to say I went and got the quilt!

Here is a little background. When my Grandmother was a little girl in the 1930's, her Great-Grandmother told her that if she would pick out a pattern, she would make her a quilt. My Grandmother remembers going through the patterns, saved from The Atlanta Journal newspaper, and picked out the Bear's Paw pattern.

These blocks were made totally from scraps of clothes. My Grandma can still pick out dress fabrics from this quilt. The blocks are hand-pieced and BEAUTIFUL!

Here are some of my favorite fabrics. I think this fabric is from a flour sack.

I love this floral fabric. The blocks are all scrappy.

My Grandmother's Great Grandmother never put the quilt together. In the 1980's my Great Aunt sent the blocks to a lady in Ohio. She did this to surprise my Grandma. The lady from Ohio sashed and bordered the quilt in the pretty peach fabric. She also hand quilted the quilt. Her hand quilting is AMAZING!! I wish that I could handquilt like that!!

When my Grandmother got the quilt back from Ohio, she folded it on to a quilt rack..and there it sat til she gave it to me. It has never been washed. There are very faint pencil markings on the border. It looks wonderful and doesnt stink (smells kinda dusty) but I kind of want to put it on my bed...but I'm scared to wash it. What do you think?

We love this quilt so much!


Days at Buttermilk Cottage said...

Your quilt is lovely and it's nice it has landed with someone who really loves and appreciates it. Not sure what to tell you about washing it, you're probably more of a quilt expert than me. But I'll bet it would do fine if you wash it in cold water, gentle cycle and a mild soap. I say use it and enjoy it. Thanks for visiting Buttermilk Cottage. Plesae come often.

Anonymous said...

I love old quilts like that, especially the fabric from the 1930s. And to have it given to you by your grandmother is priceless. I'd agree to use it and launder it very carefully. Your great-grandmother, back in the depression, probably would have said the same thing.

Val said...

This is just absolutely beautiful! And the fact that she wanted you to get this quilt means a lot.

Mom Walds Place said...

What a wonderful story!

Ditto on the gentle cycle and soap. If you wanted to be extra careful you could even use a front loading machine. They do not have an agitator in the center, so it is easier on quilts.

I would suggest borrowing a friends washer instead of a laundromat. If you use a laundromat pay to run an empty cycle first to make sure the machine is clean.

Then again, if you borrow a friends, it is a good excuse to visit. Too bad I do not live in GA!

Thank you for sharing your special quilt with us. Feel free to share more of the fabrics!

Judi said...

Hi Libby *hugs*
What a lovely story about a lovely quilt. You MUST truly love that quilt it is so very special. Wonderful story. I don’t think I would wash it if it didn’t require washing but I don’t know the rules for looking after an antique quilt. I hope your grandmother is doing very well following surgery. Now she can look forward to seeing it at your place and seeing how special it is for you.
I hope you’ve had a lovely day…beautiful day here today…