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Do You Have an Heirloom Quilt From a Long-Gone Family Member?   Quilting Swaps - Unsewn

Started 3/23/21 by judyinohio; 3314 views.
In reply toRe: msg 25

From: judyinohio


This is the last quilt that my grandmother worked on and she was determined to finish it but she was only about half way through when she died of liver cancer. My mother brought the parts home from Indiana and sobbed over it while she worked on it. I was sixteen and reasonably good with embroidery skills but (as you might guess) my offers to help were rejected. My mother took a long, long time to finish this quilt in 1957 and never used it on a bed.

All of the quilts in this house inspired DH to make quilt ladders one year for all of the women who worked in our office. These ladders have mortise and tenon construction with pegs in the tenons and so "collapse" easily for gift wrapping and transport.  The women certainly were puzzled by the packages under our tree that year and then they were absolutely thrilled when they saw what the gifts were, particularly since I had made each one of them a "Mile a Minute" quilt.  That was an exciting year for them ... they got TWO gifts!!!   LOL


From: Dee in TX (DBRADFOR3)


thank you for sharing your quilts with us Judy.  What a wonderful but sad memory of your mother working on the yellow flower quilt.  Is it possible that the colors faded on the 1st one?  I do like that sashing, simple but interesting, looks like a twisting ribbon - or even a duck relaxed.  


From: judyinohio


The quilt looks totally unused, like she finished it, didn't like it and put it away. That quilt is dated 1953 so I don't know what source a small town Indiana housewife would have had for buying quilt kits ... ladies magazines, Montgomery Wards or Sears Roebuck catalog?  Anybody here big on that part of quilting history?

Those staggered half hexies do look like ducks, don't they? wink  The colors in the pieced blocks are just awful, though.

At first glance, that "twisting ribbon" or "duck" border looks like it would be easy to replicate, using a half-hexie template.  

I really *like* those colors in the blocks.  (The lavender fabric, not so much.)  The quilt looks very Spring-y.  It looks like something that might be made today - no kit needed, really.  Kinda reminds me of an Eleanor Burns quilt.    

In reply toRe: msg 29

I have some photos of an heirloom quilt I will share in a little while.  Trying to get the photos I just took in some reasonable order.  

Just love the applique quilt you showed! I am the first in my family to quilt. My parents immigrated to America in 1959 and all their relatives did other needlework which was stunning but I never got any. I do have a quilt top from DH aunt made of double knit and all sorts of other fabrics. I was given her stash after she passed because none of the cousins were quilters.

In reply toRe: msg 20

Here is one view of a quilt I inherited from my Mom after she inherited it from her Mom.  I have not looked up the name of the block yet.  It is roughly twin-sized, 8 blocks tall and 7 blocks wide, with an extra strip of about 6 inches of muslin added at the bottom.  Backing and background fabric is muslin, and the binding was done by wrapping the backing to the top side, and hand-stitching in place.  It's an autograph quilt, and the autographs have been embroidered - I presume over the original signatures.  There is a lot of fading, bleeding in some spots, and stains, and one or two blocks have serious damage to a certain fabric, which obviously did not wear as well as all the others.  The binding is in bad shape - the muslin is a bit coarse by modern standards.  I know that the quilt dates from 1938, but the only way I know that is because a couple of blocks have that year embroidered next to the autographs.  There are many names I do not recognize, but also many names of relatives I knew and a few ancestors I never met.  More research is called for!  I have photographed all of the blocks close-up, and I will post a few of them here in a little while. 

I have a few other quilts from each of my grandmothers, but I have no dates for them.   

In reply toRe: msg 33

Here are a few other photos of parts of the autograph quilt.  I'm still working on the photos of the autograph blocks.  These will show the overall condition of the quilt as it is currently.  I'm contemplating doing some minor repairs and then a label documenting its history.  I thought that my grandmother had a block in this quilt, but after photographing all of the autographs, I don't see her name in any of them.  That's likely because the quilt was made FOR her, but I have no idea if it was for any special occasion, or maybe the ladies just routinely made autograph quilts for each other.  

Of course, most of the individuals whose names are embroidered on the quilt have long since gone to Heaven, but there are the names of two cousins who are still living - Janice and Harley Mathews, brother and sister, who are both in their 80s now.  More on other family members later.