Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Why Do We Quilt?

That question has been around Blogland for a while...I've thought about it and thought about it and just didn't have an answer...yesterday, the answer hit me. Let me give you a little background...I've made quilts for birthdays, retirements, new babies, new homes, graduations, weddings, hospital stays, but what I got to do for one of my customers made me realize why I do this...

I had breakfast with an old customer of mine last Thursday and she brought me top that had been started by another of my customers that passed away with cancer in December. I went and saw her shortly before she died and all she was concerned about was the 2 quilts that she hadn't been able to finish. One for her grand daughter that was due in February and this quilt that I got for her son...this was the only quilt she had ever done for her son, and she wanted him to have it. Well her husband was going through her stuff and he called Jami and told her that he'd found the 2 projects...Jami went and got them, she finished up the baby quilt and gave me the other one. Well, it was a delectable mountain from Bonnie at Quiltville...her directions had about 4 different settings, none of which I could figure out from what was there...she had already sewn some rows together, so I just went with it and hoped I did what she was thinking. I finished putting it together yesterday. It was the most wonderful experience...I felt so privileged to be able to do this for her. It brought back the best memories...she used to stop at the shop on Friday afternoons on her way home from teaching to see the boys...Howie and Zack were always at the shop and she would come by if she wasn't coming in on Saturday...she would go in the back with them, she loved them and they absolutely would flip when she came in the door. She always came to our Saturday Sampler group and always was willing to share anything she knew or that she had learned. She was just one of those people that gave way more than she took from this life. I was telling Andy that there's been a lot of talk in Blogland about why we quilt...he laughed and said very quickly "Because that's what YOU do." He's so right, It IS what I do. I don't know what I'd do if I didn't quilt...

27 comments:

Sue said...

I really enjoyed that post today. What a blessing for you to be able to finish up that quilt.
I have an aunt who wants me to finish one for her.

I quilt because it's something I've always loved. I love the history behind quiltmaking and the whole 'let's sit down together' and make something for someone thought:) Giving something that your hands put together is quite rewarding. I know gifts that I receive that are made with love by loving hands are just the most special:)

Darlene said...

You are such a wonderful person, Carol. There's a place reserved for you in Heaven.

It is what "I" do and love every minute of it. Ask Andy why do I feel compelled to explain myself when I'm questioned. :-)

Sherri said...

Love this post...and I always love reading about why we quilt...and especially when it's paired with such an inspirational story as this!

JVC_Scout_Mom said...

I had a very similar honor.

My sister-in-law (hubby's sister) was expecting her first child. I had 'inherited' their mother's sewing trunk, as I was the only one in the family who was doing any active sewing.

In the trunk I found a partially finished quilt, and an elephant-stuffie in a similar material. My husband recognized the elephant as a pattern that both he and his brother had as a child.

I was fortunate enough to find the book where the quilt pattern was -- an Irish Chain. I went out on ebay, and found the elephant pattern and bid on each I found -- I won TWO!

My SIL hung the quilt on her wall. The baby never got it. ;)

I tagged the quilt --

"Quilts connect the past, to the present and the future.

Blue and Cream Irish Chain Quilt

Begun by (Grandma name) 1948 - 2000
Finished by (my name) 1965 -
For Baby B 2008 - "



http://www.flickr.com/photos/ilively/2732242104/in/photostream/

Screen Door said...

Great post....Sometimes the only way to describe it is, " a quilt -- at least to me--- is a tangible form of love... something you can touch...." You have a great day, you deserve it.

Annelies said...

I love your sweet heart and I can share that I feel the same. There is something about quilting that just brings out the best in people, and I am so blessed that my students are more than students....they are my dearest friends. XXX

Ginger Patches said...

What a great post. And what a privilege to be able to be a part of seeing to it that your friends final wish regarding her son's quilt was carried out...that's awesome.

I have not put labels on my kids quilts yet (bad mommy) but I have written down in my little idea book what I want them to say and they know it I die they're supposed to get those quilts labeled...I really need to just do it.

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Carol, what a blessing you were to that family. Thanks so much for sharing your sweet story.

Kim said...

Oh my, big tears, lol, such a sweet story about friendship, caring and the joy of sharing the broad quilting community we love. I am very proud of you and your generous nature. I have finished a quilt for another quilter. I wish I could put into words how I felt throughout the process. I do know she was overwhelmed with joy when she received the finished quilt. Kay's Quilt. http://ksbquilts.blogspot.com/2008/04/she-likes-it.html

Lisa D. said...

What a great story. And Andy is very wise. :)

sweetbabies00 said...

Very sweet.
I always say that quilting "soothes me and stimulates me, at the same time" It's like I found something that "fits" with my soul.

Thimbleanna said...

What a neat post Carol. I too, feel that we're very lucky that we can help each other out when needed.

Vicki W said...

I agree, It's just what we do! What a great story.

Nedra said...

That IS what we do. Quilting really binds us together as sisters.

Gretchen said...

A wonderful post today. I really liked Andy's reply. It's so simple and yet so true!

Cindy said...

A heartwarming and beautiful story, Carol, to share "why you quilt".

I definitely feel like you're one of the "good guys".

You're a blessing.

Magnolia Bay Quilts said...

Such a sweet post. How wonderful that you were able to help her loved ones receive her intended gifts. That's very touching.

Carol said...

That's a great story Carol, what a great way to remember your friend and fulfill her wish to have the quilts done as well. I like what your husband said, it's just what you do. Yeah, that's a good answer, it's just what we do. Quilting is a big part of my life too. It makes me happy and it's just what I do.

*karendianne. said...

Oh Carol - what memories you experienced while you were making this!!! I can imagine it must have been such a moving process. Even writing this post and sharing. Quenching the spirit (I think) keeping it simple. The truth is always simple, brief. When you think about it. Love thy Neighbor. Things like that. Truth is truth. "Because that's what I do." Thank you so, so much for sharing!!! I enjoyed this and feel uplifted.

quiltdolls said...

I would go crazy. I have an autistic son who just turned 18 & has hit puberty. problems daily. thenb my grandmother lives with my mother & my grandmother is really bat-ty. she does not like that my mom & i QUILT & DO EVERYTHING TOGETHER.
we enjoy our time together me & my mom.

also going to the quilt shop the country loft weekly just cheers me up. I can feel awful & go to the loft & it picks up my mood.

kim from san diego

Michelle said...

Thank you for sharing such a sweet story. My soul needed to smile - it was a rough day today.

Cheryl said...

A very heartfelt post..thanks so much for sharing it. Quilting to me has always been as much about the friendships as the quilting, and I think you being a part of completing those quilts is such a confirmation of that.

QuiltSue said...

A great post with a lovely story that really made me stop and think about why I quilt too. Thanks.

Kathie said...

what a great post and wonderful way to remember your friend
she would be so thankful to you for finishing this quilt for her son.
Yes we quilt cause it makes us happy and I am always happy to share with others....
isn't that what quilting is about?

Lori said...

That is a wonderful story and terrific that you were able to finish the quilt for her son.

Ann at Prairie Primrose said...

You've shown how caring and giving quilters are!

I think that is one reason many people quilt...to give kindness, compassion and love.

Thanks for sharing.

Kelly@ Charming Chatter said...

Oh Carol - you are such a Sweetie! Thank you for sharing this with all of us! Sometimes we forget just how important friendships, the gift of a quilt, and just the sheer joy of making them really are in this hectic world! THANK YOU - THANK YOU for the wonderful reminder!!