Neither Dave nor I have any clue from whose family this quilt came; could be his, could be mine, we just don't know. This quilt has some wear and tear, mainly because there's such a mix of textiles. The quilter used wools, cottons and silks and, needless to say, the silks haven't stood the test of time as well as the sturdier wools and cottons.
It's a beauty though...a crazy quilt but not dated nor signed, that I can find, so the maker is lost to all but God. I've not been signing my quilts but that's wrong of me. It's not pride talking, it's so that people who come after me will know the date and the maker of the quilt. Even if they never know who I am, it still means something to some people. Some people care about those things; I know I care and I bet you do as well. To do all that work, by hand, so material won't be wasted and someone will sleep warmly during cold winter months. Amazing!
Central heating is a recent invention. My Daddy grew up in an old Appalachian farmhouse that had a fireplace in the living room and a wood burning cook stove in the kitchen. That was their sole source of heat...a fireplace and cook stove for a two story farmhouse! That and lots and lots of quilts. Grandmother and Granddaddy had double beds in the living room, alongside the walls with rocking chairs in the center of the room and Granddaddy's chair beside the fireplace. He'd sit in his chair each evening and take off his work boots, putting them where they could warm up and dry out overnight. When we'd visit, I'd sleep with Grandmother, my brother would sleep with Granddaddy and Mama and Daddy would sleep upstairs. If it was winter, Mama and Daddy would wake to snow covering the bed covers. They would shore up their courage and, having placed their clothes where they could be easily and quickly reached in the morning, grab them and dash downstairs to dress beside the fireplace. BTW, the stairs to reach the second floor were outside so that mad dash included a quick exit onto the front porch and then a quick turn into the house and living room.
I well remember being held up in Daddy's arms so I could speak on the hand crank wall mounted telephone and using a water pump at the kitchen sink as opposed to a faucet. The bathroom was a Very Long Walk...out back. Various Aunts and Uncles lived down the valley, some miles hence, and every neighbor on the telephone line would race to listen in when they heard "3 longs and a short ring". Everyone knew everyone's ring and everyone also knew you didn't tell anything during a telephone call you didn't want the entire valley to know. Have you ever heard, "telegraph, telephone, tell a woman"? -smile-
It's just been since Dave and I have lived at Thistle Cove Farm that Aunt Esther has gotten her own private telephone line and the folks up the river from her have gotten electricity. City people don't realize this country is still, basically, a rural country with the population majority centered on the East Coast and then on the West Coast. Virginia is within a day's drive of fifty percent of the country's population but even where we live, there are folks without central heating and indoor plumbing. Count your blessings, folks; count your many blessings.
~ Aunt Esther's 1930's hand made quilt ~
Aunt Esther made this quilt sometime in the 1930's and it shows a lot of love and wear. She gave it to me many years ago and I know there are some who would cut it up and use it for craft projects. I'm not one of them. I tend to be fiercely loyal...some would say I have "loyalty issues" -smile- and I Hang On to things. When someone would ask Aunt Bonnie if she would sell something they hankered after, Aunt Bonnie would say, "It's not eating nor drinking a thing so I guess I'll hang on to it." That's me. I hang on to things and it pains me to think of this quilt being cut up for craft. It hangs on a wall in a bedroom and that's where it will stay, at least while I'm living here. Hopefully, one of the nephews will want it when I'm gone.
This little project is a small quilt hanging about 12 x 12 inches. The front and back is the same 100% cotton fabric and the middle is polyester batting.
My brother gave me a Lot of coned thread so I guess if I live to be three hundred and seventy-two it should last. You can see a cone of bright yellow thread behind the Featherweight and it's so much fun to be willy nilly in the use of the thread. Thread is so expensive, I've always been a bit judicious in my use but no longer! -smile-
The page is torn from a devotional and says, "You must have long-range goals to keep you from being frustrated by short-range failures."
Ain't that just the truth?! Unfortunately, most of us plan our vacations with more care and precision than we plan our lives. Yet, we're all headed somewhere and most of us are going there fast! Recently, I heard a preacher say if a person was 55, they had a bit more than 19,000 days left to live. That's according to the Bible verse that says a person has "three score and ten" which is 70 years. That gets MY attention as I'm a tad older than fifty-five.
So, what am I going to do with my 19,000, more or less, days? I'm going to live them with wild and reckless abandon...I'm going to live them...one day at a time. I'm going to focus on breathing, just for today. I'm going to play with the kittens, snuggle with the puppies, drink wine with my husband, read my Bible, talk to God, pray for folks, travel, work in the studio, hang wet laundry in the hot sun, make short bread for my neighbors, carry my spinning wheel to the pasture and spin amongst the sheep, make snow ice cream, brush the horses, wake up at 3 a.m. and listen to the nightingale song, save as many animals as I can, bury the ones who have lived here long enough to die of old age, pray for our country, quilt, knit, make rag rugs, take photos of the full moon...in short, I'm going to LIVE as if today is the last day of my life. Because, you know, one day it will be the last day of my life and I want to live ready.
So, if you're still with me, this is the finished small quilt. It hangs by a twig sewn on the back...nothing much fancy but made with love and prayers. If you want a chance to win it, leave me a note and I'll do one of those random generator deals and send it off next week. Sunday, 8 p.m. is when I'll stop taking names and by the time I find a box to fit it, I can probably get it mailed Tuesday. Nope, you don't have to blog about it nor follow me...although it would please me mightily if you did -smile-...all you have to do is leave me a note and say you'd like to win this little quilted, inspirational wall hanging. In my mind, you're already a winner.
Blessings ~ hand work ~ quilts, no matter the size ~ thread ~ my studio ~ folks who read this blog ~ folks who leave a kind word or three ~ life ~