Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Week o' Nana

Grandma Ida's wool scrap quilt

I thought I'd join in with Bug and Pop for her Blogtoberfest celebration, Week o' Nana. I have so much I could say about my grandmothers. They were both incredible inspirations for me.

My dad's mother was a seamstress. She made bridal wear. She had a huge following of customers. She and my mother, taught me how to embroider at the age of eight. Grandma would make me elaborate velvet dresses out of left over fabric. She would make matching dresses and quilts for my dolls. She would make quilts for each grandchild out of scraps of wool or velvet. She was remarkably frugal and would piece together the smallest of scraps to make a single square.

Above is one of her wool quilts, made from my old wool garments. Unfortunately, because it has been very loved, the quilting stitches have broken and frayed. I remember watching her quilting on a big frame with a collection of ladies from East Side Lutheran Church, chatting and laughing; yah, shur, you betcha. Uff da! In order to repair it, I guess I would have to do this alone with a little hoop. Sounds really labour intensive and not nearly as much fun as a group of Lutheran ladies.......But it is a goal of mine (one of those goals lasting several years) to fix this quilt.

Any suggestions are most welcome!! Also, it needs to be washed/cleaned. I'm figuring I can't really wash it until I fix it. So catch twenty two. Suggestions??


CurlyPops said...

It's so beautiful to have something like that from your nana. I really hope you can repair it and keep using it.

Cindy said...

Seamstress with bridal and velvet and matching dolls - of my I was sweating in excitement. The quilt looks devine. Can't wait to hear more.

Cathy {tinniegirl} said...

It is gorgeous. I don't have any suggestions for you but I bet your local quilt shop could advise you.

By the way, I'm sorry to hear you've been sick for so long. I hope you're back to full wellness very soon. And yes, I do find being sick terribly depressing. It's a horrible feeling.

Kelly said...

i love pieces like this. warm, functional and made by someone you love, you can literally wrap yourself in love. I have a quilt done in wedding ring design i asked my mum to make for me for my 30th birthday. its queensize, it took her 2 years, stitches all completely by hand and hand quilted with the most wonderful intricate design. i use it everyday. yes, check with a quilting shop...safe n sorry n all that...

Kerrie said...


Mate...this is a link to the Canberra Quilters, I found it on another blog I read. They may be able to help you with repairs and cleaning suggestions.

It's such a gorgeous quilt...such beautiful memories. Have you read Audrey's (from MISS) blog...?? Her most recent post is about a Nana quilt, here's the link...she also wrote a beautiful piece for the newsletter about the quilt, it's heartachingly beautiful.


Both my Nana's were seamstresses...my paternal Nana used to sew in her "sleep out" with a treadle machine my Pa adapted to run electrically. She had an enormous mahogany tallboy full of scraps and pieces of fabric...like your Nana, she used to sew for me all the time and also made matching dolls outfits, in the evenings she knitted by the fire. I used to love staying with her. I have her very first treadle sewing machine she ever owned, it's in beautiful order and still works well. She paid a shilling a week off until she owned it. The side drawers are filled with the contents of her button jars...such beautiful buttons, lots of bakelite, shell and fabric covered buttons...some glass that look like sweets.

Thanks for the post...such wonderful memories, might have to post about it myself.

Karin said...

Kerrie! Wow! Thanks mate! Tremendous.

Hey, we have a lot in common don't we. :-)