Blanket or Quilt?

I overheard this conversation at an antique shop recently.

“That’s a really old blanket”, she exclaimed.  A quilting friend who also heard the conversation bit her lip. “It isn’t a blanket, she replied, a quilt is more than that.” “Well, I’ve never been a fan of quilts,” she responded.

Not a fan? How is that possible? Although it has occurred on more than one occasion, I am always surprised when I hear people state that they never really liked quilts.  I decided to ask a few people why they dislike quilts. Some don’t like the feel. Some prefer a fluffy comforter. Others think they are old-fashioned.

Meg, the current owner of this quilt shown below,  said it best:

“When my grandmother passed, the only thing I wanted was her green quilt. As I have learned over the years, especially in my current job (palliative care), quilts represent much more than a blanket for many of us.”

I had the honor of repairing this quilt created around the 1920s. It was clearly well-loved over the years. The sides and back were torn. Several of the squares were tattered or completely off.

 

As I hand-stitched new bows, repairing each tattered square, I imagined the quilter’s children, as they grew older, pointing to the fabric they remembered from their younger days.

 

 

I wanted to preserve the original stitching as much as possible, while also giving this old girl many more decades of love. In order to achieve longevity and the original hand-stitching, I machine-quilted keeping the pieced quilt, batting and backing in-tact. The machine bumped and jumped each time I approached a clump of batting.  At first I lamented the uneven lines, then chuckled, imagining the original quilter saying, “That old thing is still around? My goodness, if I thought it would last this long, I would have…”. “Sorry she is making such fits.”

Some things will never change. A quilt will always be a quilt meant to be loved and snuggled under.  The quilter will want to do better the next time around. A blessed quilter will have their work treasured for decades and generations to come, tattered squares and all.

Until next time,

Heidi (a.k.a. Sugarplum)

 

 

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What is the Measurement of a _____ Size Quilt?

I had someone ask me the size of a typical queen size quilt. I wasn’t sure because I make them various sizes depending on how long the customer wants the quilt to hang over the side of the mattress. I decided to search for it. If you have never searched for the size of a quilt, don’t. It is an exercise in insanity as you are directed to an infinite number of companies that sell bedspreads and/or links to more links. Somewhere in the abyss of searches, I found a link http://www.allpeoplequilt.com/how-to-quilt/quilting-basics/standard-quilt-sizes-how-to-measure-and-determine-size

Their chart was quite useful. Add the drop on either side for the full measurement. Examples are given in 10″ drops on either side of the bed.

Lap quilt: Usually about 60×65 (no drops added because you snuggle with it on your lap)

Crib: 23 x 46 (no drops added because it fits on the mattress top)

Twin bed: Usually about 59 x 85

Queen bed: 80 x 90

King bed: 96 x 90

California King (more narrow, but longer than a King): 92 X 94

 

Take that, Google! 🙂

 

Until next time,

Heidi (a.k.a. Sugarplum)

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She’s Here!

I counted the sleeps starting at 20 days before she arrived. I pictured myself waking up in the night, sneaking into her room just to make sure that it wasn’t a dream. I rearranged the furniture more than once, and sat pondering her arrival in the chair facing the long wall where she would rest.

October 27, 12:49 p.m. she arrived. I still haven’t come up with a name, but am welcome to suggestions. Isn’t she adorable?

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A Gift of Peace

When you think of Sugarplum, visions of Christmas may dance in your head. Maybe a mystical, enchanting forest comes to mind? For me, it is the memory of a very special brother whom we lost too soon.

In the ” About Me” intro, I briefly mentioned the story of my brother, Lawry and my Sugarplum nickname. If you would like to know a bit more, keep a tissue on hand. I wrote this story A Gift of Peace in my late teens, a few years after he died. All of the details are true.

My services include special order quilts such as those for cancer survivors. I just finished a pink quilt for a customer today. Breast cancer survivor. Yesss!

Heidi (a.k.a. Sugarplum)

 

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Heartbeat of the Artists

You know those moments when you wonder if your quilting or piecing is “good enough”? Maybe you had a little squiggle that only you can see, but is seems as blaring as your baby crying during a cermony?

As I quilted this piece yesterday (you will see the line straight across the center feather frond), I was suddenly reminded of a statement from a friend years ago that finds its way to the front of my memory drawer now and then.

 

I had just completed a Ukrainian egg. This egg decorating technique is done on fresh chicken eggs, yolk and all, batik style. Wax covers the colors you want to keep as you dip into the next color dye. Once the wax touches the egg, there is no going back. I remember early on when I had squiggles here and there as I tried to steady my hand. I lamented over this with an artistic friend. He said to me, “Heidi. That is the heartbeat of the artist. It shows that a human being created this beautiful work of art.” Ah, thanks Tom. I will always remember his words of wisdom.

Whether stressing over perfectly matched points or barely visible backtracking, remember that we are human, heartbeat and all.

 

Thank you for visiting.

Heidi (a.k.a. Sugarplum)

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