Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A Quilt Story

During a lovely holiday visit to John's family, my mother-in-law, Sally, asked if I might be interested in an old quilt.  I followed her down to a back bedroom, where she pulled out of the closet a pretty spread done in soft colors against a creamy white background.  It was made in the 1930's and was still in remarkably good shape.  Sally said she didn't know if I would really want it, and I shouldn't feel that I had to take it (she's so cool).  I thought perhaps screaming HELL YEAH! at my mother-in-law would be a bit inappropriate, so I managed to mumble what I hope was a respectful yet enthusiastic, "Yes, I would really like to have this."

This entirely hand-quilted piece was made by Shelley Stevens, a woman who used to babysit John and his siblings when they were very young.  Shelley was born ca. 1905 and passed away many years ago.  Her sister, when disposing of some of Shelley's personal affects, was going to put the quilt out in a yard sale for $2.  TWO DOLLARS!!!  My MIL couldn't bear that it be subjected to such an uncertain fate, and so brought it home (see, I told you she was cool) and has taken good care of it. 

The pattern seems familiar to both Sally and I, but we couldn't quite put our fingers on the name of it.  Sally isn't certain, but suspects that the fabric came from a quilting kit put out by Sears in the 1930's.  I'll need to do a little research on the quilt's background.

When the weather turns warm, the quilt will grace our bed.  Until then, it's tucked away in my closet, safe from the ravages of time and three cats.

Shelley, if you're out there somewhere, you are fondly remembered, and your quilt lives on.

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