Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Angel Baby Quilt

One of the {many} perks of being me is that I come from a long line of quilt makers. I am the proud owner of a few precious quilts, lovingly made by the hands of my grandmothers and great-aunts.
 
Another perk of being me is that my Grandma Bessie's youngest sister, my great-aunt Jonnie, is on Facebook and she reads my blog {hi Aunt Jonnie!!!}. I love that we have reconnected through social media, and that she reads my words here and knows what I'm up to these days.
I've had this little angel baby quilt since the beginning of my time, and I'd been wondering about its origins. I thought that my grandma had a hand in making it but I wasn't sure, so I sent a message to Aunt Jonnie and asked about it.

I’m so glad I asked! What I discovered from Aunt Jonnie was that my grandma hadn’t really helped with the quilt due to arthritic hands, but that it was a joint effort on behalf of her sisters - my three great aunts that I grew up with and adored as a child.




I learned that my great-aunt Floy, the eldest sister, “tore” the squares. And the middle sister, my great-aunt Mary, cut and sewed the angel shapes on. And the beautifully stitched embroidery that I had long admired? It was all done by Aunt Jonnie herself. It's so fun to know that they each had their own special part of the quilt making process!



Once the embroidery and applique work was done on each of the blocks, Aunt Floy sewed them together. The quilt tops were then assembled and quilted by all of my aunts during their weekly missionary meetings (quilting days) on Thursdays in the church basement. {I blogged about that here.}

Aunt Jonnie told me that they made these quilts to raise money for their church, and they also made them “for free” for each of their first grandchildren with the idea that they would be passed down and used by all of the kids.







She said they lost count of how many of these quilts they made over the years, and she guessed over 50 of them. They even made one for their grandchildren’s first children, and Carrie has this same quilt, done up in green and yellow and not nearly as worn, safely tucked in my cedar chest.
 
One of my very favorite things about this quilt is that my mom wrote my name in permanent marker in a corner on the back to identify it as mine when I took it to school. This quilt was also used by me in Kindergarten as a nap-mat. :o)  
 

I love knowing the sweet history behind this angel baby quilt! It has always been a treasure to me, and knowing all those sweet details makes it even more special.

14 comments:

Susi said...

It is Lovely. How awesome that you have something from your childhood and now know the history behind it. Being 1 of 9 children I do not have anything other than pictures from my childhood. I do have some cross stitched baby blankets that my Mother made for my children tucked away in my cedar chest. I will eventually pass them on.

Jennifer Lebowitz said...

Such amazing history Deb. I love having something made by family. Just think of all the work and hours that went into that. Sounds like they had a lot of fun making them as a family. I would be so amazing having time set up to work on sewing like this. Reminds me of our craft get togethers. Maybe someday we will look back on the projects we have made with this nostalgia. : ) See you Saturday friend.

Christa atCedarmereFarm said...

Hi Deb, that is a very sweet quilt with a wonderful history behind it. My grandmother gave each granddaughter a rocking chair when we were expecting our first babies. My first-cousin-once-removed visited us a few months ago and she pointed to my rocking chair and said "funny, my Mom has one just like it!"

Karen said...

What a wonderful quilt, and how lucky to know its history! I have several quilts done, I believe, by my great aunts and maybe my grandmother, but I don't know for sure, and there's no one left to answer my questions.

Lin Chao said...

Beautiful quilt and great family history.

scrappyjacky said...

That's wonderful,Deb....and what a perfect quilt for a little girl.

Audrey said...

Wow, that is so special!!!! I can only wish I had something like that. Not a quilter in sight over here in this family tree! I adore the angels and the sweet embroidery and think it's awesome that you now know the history behind it. Thanks for sharing it with all of us! XO

Michael said...

Hello Deb, being also the first grand child on my 'branch' of the family tree, I have this same quilt only it has a green background and is not nearly as preserved as yours. In fact, we had it out the other day and were discussing how best to keep the now tattered quilt in as few pieces as possible. I remember my grandma (Mary) and the other aunts spending their Thursdays quilting. I also remember my grandma embroidering each square. Thanks for sharing yet another blast from the past. Lots of good memories from those days!

Gail said...

What a treasure for you to have of your Aunts love.

helena said...

a beautiful quilt and fabulous to have the story of how each lovely lady played a part in its making

Fiona@Staring at the Sea said...

What a lovely thing to treasure with all that family history wrapped up in every stitch.

Beverly said...

Even that more treasured when you have the whole story. I can imagine the sisters sitting around talking as they worked, sharing their hopes for the child they would all love.

Ruth said...

What an absolute treasure and I'm so glad you know the story behind every stitch!

Maria Ontiveros said...

What a blessing that your aunt is still around to tell the story. This is just lovely!
Rinda

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...