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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Bloggers Quilt Festival

~ Crazy Quilt, quilter and date unknown ~

Don't you just love clever people? Park City Girl is hosting a Blogger Quilt Festival and there are, currently, more than four hundred folks participating.

Perhaps some of you remember this quilt, above. Neither Dave nor I remember from whose family it came, perhaps his, perhaps mine. It's a crazy quilt with random materials including wools, cottons, silks and is in fairly good shape. There's no date nor signature so it's a guess as to how old it is but at least several decades, perhaps one hundred years or more. That sounds so old but when I think one hundred years ago would just be 1909, that doesn't sound so old.

~ Aunt Esther's hand made quilt, circa 1930 ~

This quilt was made by Aunt Esther in the 1930's and has seen a bit of use, resulting in a bit of wear. It's no longer used on a bed but hangs on the wall where it can be seen and admired. I want to make a label for it with Aunt Esther's name and date so future generations will know from whence it came. Aunt Esther has made hundreds, perhaps thousands, of quilts in her day; she'll be 92 in January and is still quilting, crocheting, tatting, etc. She makes apple butter in the fall, strawberry jam in the spring, hunts for morels, ramps and lives on her own. I'm going to see her next month and we'll have nice chin wags as we talk over old times and family.

Note to self...start labeling my own quilts! -smile-

~ Turning Twenty quilt watched over by Sam P. Spade, Secret Agent ~

This quilt is a Tricia Cribbs Turning Twenty pattern and one of a couple of dozen I've made. I'm not a fancy quilter but I do hand quilt and enjoy choosing various materials, designs and colors. In this quilt, each block has either hand quilted hearts, the names of Dave's cousin and his wife, their marriage date and a cross. Thus far, I've made quilts for almost everyone in my family and a lot of my friends. It's something I enjoy doing and one of my earliest memories, from age four or five, is of Granddaddy Bennett handing Mom and Daddy a five dollar bill and saying, "Here, take this money and buy the babies each a blanket. Don't let them get cold, keep them warm this winter." Mom would have bought two blankets, one each for my brother and I, and had change left over from that five dollar bill. In Appalachia, then as now, a lot of folks are concerned with needs - food, shelter, clothing - and wants come after. 

I hope folks enjoy receiving one of my quilts or, 'deed, anything I've hand made. It's a labor of love, as you well know if you do hand work, and one of the most defeating emotions is the one when someone looks at their gift, the work of my hands and heart, and says, "oh. thanks." Granted, it's a short list but those few folks will never, ever get anything other than store bought from me again. I don't say that in anger but there are too many people who do appreciate hand made to waste it on folks who would rather have store bought. And that's okay. Not everyone wants hand made, some think it cheap and mean and they would rather have store bought.

I'm not a grand quilter; truth be told, I'm only passable but I follow Mother Teresa's dictates. She said, "None of us can do anything great on our own but we can all do small things with great love." That's why and how I's not great but it is done with great love and each quilt is made with prayers for the person who'll receive it. I know they'll sleep warmly and tucked, quite literally, into prayer.

I've read the smallest deed always exceeds the grandest of intentions. That's so true, isn't it? If you've often thought you'd like to learn to quilt or sew or knit or crochet or --- fill in the blank, do it. Don't wait for 'some day'; today is the day, now is the time. What you make doesn't have to be perfect and, in fact, the Amish always make a small "mistake" in their quilts because "only God is perfect". This winter is going to be cold and someone, somewhere could use a bit of colorful happiness, in the form of a quilt or hand knit or crochet hat or scarf or something that's warmly sewn. Do small things with great love; the rewards are out of this world.

Until next time,

Blessings ~ Bloggers Quilt Festival ~ Park City Girl ~ quilts ~ quilters hands ~ small things with great love ~ the work of Your hands ~


  1. Both are beautiful quilts :)

  2. So beautiful! I knew as soon as I saw your header picture that you were located near my hometown. Love your blog.

  3. Oh Sandra you are so lucky to have those quilts and your friends and family so lucky to have yours. I have been working on a simple quilt for almost a year now. I am hand quilting each 3 by 3 square. I try to do at least one a day but there are over 300, so it will be a while! Hopefully someday each stich will be as appreciated as Aunt Esther's.

    Your words are such a breath of fresh air and truly simple and lovely. I so appreciate you taking the time to share.


  4. You showed us some amazing quilts! so many generations represented. thank you for sharing!

  5. Oh what a beautiful heartfelt post! I love your quilts. They are truely beautiful and should be beautiful in anyones heart and eyes who recieve them!! They should use them proudly!

    You will have to teach me how to spin, now remember!!!

    Oh Yes be sure to label your quilts for the future!!!


  6. Hi Sandra :) I really enjoy your blog and which I could check it each day. The quilts are lovely. I have been wanting to hand stitch a quilt. I have hand stitched some photo quilts, using actual photos (you know I am a photographer/artist) but want to make a real quilt. I have one on my bed that my great grandmother made. My mother gave it to me because she is one of those store bought people. I am so happy to have it! And I totally understand and agree with what you said about not making something for someone who wants store bought. Thank you for the wonderful post that had inspired me. I want to meet your aunt Esther!!

  7. You're so right. If there is something a person really wants to do, then do it. Quilting is so easy to begin and every quilt can be useful, many old quilts would probably NOT win any prizes in a quilt show but as for filling real and practical need they excelled. Made of re-cycled used fabrics and filled with wool or down they kept families warm when any form of central heating was unheard of. How much more precious and practical can a quilt be?

  8. Very beautiful and what kind of witty one the quilt!!! .Marika

  9. Your quilts are absolutely beautiful! I am so glad you share your talents with the world.

    My grandmother inspired my desire to make gifts for those I hold dear. She used to make holidays a wonderland for our family. She made everything from the gifts, decor, music, food, etc. It was always amazing. I have so many special memories of those times and I still cherish many of the gifts she made me even though she's been gone almost 30 years.

    If a person doesn't appreciate the time and love that goes into a gift you've made for them, then they don't deserve you or a gift!

  10. The quilts are wonderful! There are a few quilts in our family, too, and I should get those labeled. Although I'll probably never make one. Love seeing them all!

  11. Beautiful quilts.To bad no date on the crazy quilt. I quilt and do crazy quilting on a much smaller scale. I enjoyed you post and your Mother Teresa comments. Sharon

  12. Anonymous12:49 AM EDT

    i want to quilt and sew and.....and....maybe I should stop blogging to have more time to do these things!? I just had to say I saw your AMEN and came to your site...In reading your profile I love that someone else loves the exact music I love. i have cds with monks chanting and my family thinks I'm crazy. I LOVe Irish Music and took Irish Dance for two years.....the pure joy of dancing to that glorious the best workout ever!!

  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

  14. Your quilts are lovely. I have wanted an old quilt so badly that I bought one from a thrift store to restore it. It will be much more work than I anticipated but I cant wait to get started after Christmas.

    Thank you so much for the comment you left on my entry to the Festival. I am happy (probably not the right word..) that my quilt touches so many other people, even if I made it as a way to deal with the whole thing myself. I have to add that I did ask my daughter’s permission to tell our story, and she was only happy I would do it. Some stories just need to be told.
    And thank you; we really are blessed!

  15. aunt esther is amazing - and so are you for having taken care of that family heirloom...

  16. I love to see old quilts that have been passed down. I have a couple myself and they are so meaningful. I found you from your lovely comment on my mother's quilt that I entered in the quilt festival. The photo on your blog heading is spectacular. You are truly blessed! I was wondering if you have any experience with wool as a quilt batting, given your situation with sheep, lol. I've never worked with it, but I think I'd like to try.

  17. "we'll have nice chin wags as we talk over old times"

    Chin wags. I love that. Yes, label your quilts. I have always wanted to quilt. Now, I don't think either my fingers nor eyes could handle the delicate stitches. I do knit, still.

    Your quilts are beautiful and anyone who has one and doesn't appreciate its beauty, have them send it to me.

  18. Beautiful quilts. I particularly like Aunt Esther's. Thanks for sharing.

  19. What a lovely post. It's wonderful to think of you making your quilts with love to pass on to the next generation and I loved what the Amish said about perfection.
    Your Aunt Esther's quilt is beautiful.

  20. Anonymous8:11 PM EDT

    What lovely quilts you have in your posession. I agree with your sentiments on handmade versus store bought, - but then I also think hand made will "out-value" store bought any day.

  21. I enjoyed your posts and that you pray over your work for the person that it will be gifted to. I love the crazy quilt. I recently bought some very old and well done crazy quilt squares with the most amazing hand stitching! I'm still deciding what to do with them. :)

  22. I love your philosophy. Makes everything seem more doable for a perfectionist like me.

  23. So glad you've shared pics of these beautiful quilts!
    They are great!!!
    Blesiings to you,

  24. Beautiful quilts. Love the background scenery as well. Thanks for sharing.

  25. What a lovely post- Your Aunt Esther is really amazing- so wonderful that she is able to continue to create beautiful quilts.
    I love your turning 20- so bright and cheery- Most of all I enjoyed your thoughtful post- one does need to try new things and be proud of the things one accomplishs.
    Thanks for sharing. Warmest regards,

  26. These are both beautiful, and thanks for the reminder that I too need to start labeling.

  27. The quilts in your collection are wonderful. Of course, since I am a lover of crazy patch; I like the photo of the first one! It was fun browsing around the rest of your blog too. I loved your post about your cute little studio.

  28. Yikes, girl. You hand-quilt? Your hand-quilted turning twenty is wonderful. I've only hand quilted one quilt - but it was king sized and it took me over 200 hours. Enuf of that! Now I have them machine quilted. I'm assuming that the picture at the top of your blog is at/near your home. Oh, how beautiful! Anyway, I'll be stopping back to see you again.


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