Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Hard and Easy

This is a quilt with an amazing story. My sister Geri was at a garage sale near Etna, California. This quilt top was on the floor of the front porch with a dog sleeping on it. When she went up on to the porch to look at some books for sale, the dog left. She glanced down and, being a quilter, noticed the quilt top. It looked like it was a grandmother's flower garden in shades of browns. She picked it up and shook it and not noticing any tears or holes, asked how much the man wanted for it. She paid less than $5 for the 'old rag'. Taking it home, she soaked it in the bathtub in some quilt wash. The quilt turned out to be red and white - quite a surprise- and came out very clean. Unfortunately the bright reds ran and the quilt quickly became shades of red and pink. She sent it to me to use if I could. It wasn't very attractive with the pink, but was all beautifully hand sewn with each hexagon perfectly sewn to the others. I couldn't use it the way it was so threw it in the washing machine (gentle cycle) with hot water, laundry soap, and a little bleach. Then I added one after another color catchers and watched them turn bright pink. When the last one I added remained white, I rinsed the quilt top and hung it to dry. It looked perfect! I paid for it to be hand quilted by a mother-daughter combo in Utah - Alice and Melanie Stones. They did a beautiful job of outlining every single hexagon. Alice and Melanie came upon a few small 'toenail' cuts and mended them as they quilted. I found a few more as I put on the border and mended those as well. I then appliqued the outer edges of each outside edge hexagon onto a great print border and hand bound the edges. An entire quilt done by hand - a wonderful creation. We think the top was made in the 40's, but maybe later. I wish the woman who made the top could see her beautiful handwork all finished.
This 'diamonds on grays' king quilt I plan to send off to college with my grandson Macon. I found the pattern in a magazine, but didn't write down who did it. Thank you who ever you are.

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