Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Memory Lane


Boy, did Laura ever bring back memories with her photo of her early Quilt As You Go. I made a similar quilt. It was not my very first quilt. That one--a red and blue biscuit quilt that was made for my older son when he went into his "big boy bed" some 32 years ago. Would love to see it again, but who knows where it ended up? Probably in some garage where somebody lies upon it to change oil in a car!! My Quilt As You Go was made in the mid-70s. The memories of the process are much sweeter than the memory of the quilt itself. My dear friend, who lost her battle to breast cancer some 16 years ago, convinced me that we needed to go to a lady's house once a month and take quilting lessons. We were to do a sampler. We purchased the required amount of light, medium, and dark fabrics (part cotton, part polyester, for Pete's sake) and plain white for backings, and a super lofty batting. These fabs are actually prints but they seem to read solid. (Need a new dig cam! But I digress.) At each month's lesson we were handed a pattern for the sampler which we traced. Somewhere in my vast pile of "stuff" I still have those handmade patterns in a notebook. We would later transfer them to cardboard (probably from the Cheerios box) and glue a bit of sandpaper on the backs. We were expected to have the previous month's block handpieced and handquilted to be joined with the other blocks later. This handquilting through the thick batting turned me off handquilting for a long time. My fondest memory of those classes is the time spent with my wonderful friend and the Constant Comment tea we sipped at the end of each class. The thing I disliked about the quilt was how it looked on the back when the blocks were joined. NOT COOL. We paid $3 a lesson! As a stay-at-home-mom, that seemed like a lot of money--but so worth it for the friendship and quilting camaraderie!
Oddly, my DH and I slept under that quilt for many years. It was laundered a lot and the fabric eventually pulled a bit away at the seams. The color scheme is so--so, uh, 70s. Continuing down Memory Lane...have you looked at this beauty made by Karen at sewprimitive? I love, love, love it. The paperdolls around the border evoke such fun childhood nostalgia. When I was a kid (no TV, no video games, etc. Altogether now, "awwww") I was way into paperdolls. Played with them for hours on end. Designed clothes for them on typing paper. Created whole scenarios for them to act out. Just loved paperdolls. Side story: my younger sister is 11 years younger than I. When she was just a toddler, she got into my "stash" of paperdolls and their clothes. Hmmm..I have always loved stashes, it would seem. Anyway, she destroyed them. I know, you're thinking, "weren't you a little old to still be playing with paperdolls at that time?" And you would be right! When I got home from school that day, I went into a snit! I never let her live that down--as any good sister would not. Well, a few years ago she surprised me with two books of paperdolls she had purchased off eBay!!! Now we're even---or so she thinks.

3 comments:

anne bebbington said...

Yes I see what you mean about the colour scheme - luminescent :o) - but the memories things like that evoke never fade either which is a good thing

Judy said...

I wonder how joining was in those days, now you can join with a perfect back and no seams showing. I do it on larger quilts.

Love the color scheme...it's so wild and 70's. Perfect for that time period! Great job and you are right about the friendship!

Dawn said...

Your quilt as you go quilt is wonderful! The best part of it - full of wonderful memories! It looks so much like all of our early quilts! My first quilt was a log cabin with cardboard templates!