Tuesday, March 11, 2008

connecting threads

lone star vintage quilt top


I don't know where
the fabric came from
possibly flour sacks
collected over the years
or scraps from old clothes

I don't know when
my grandmother started this quilt
or how long it took to cut out those
648 diamond-shaped pieces
all by hand

I don't know if
she was unable to finish it
or was it part of a great cosmic plan
so I would get to
finish what she started

I do know that
she was my grandmother
my father's mother
I was her last granddaughter
this was her last quilt

I know that she left it for me
just a Lone Star
waiting to be batted and lined
and quilted and bound
an heirloom from her to me, her namesake

I know that it is finally done
Grandmother, "You can
take it off your list
of unfinished projects now!"
so can I, sorry it took me so long

I know that more than just a quilt top
was handed down
you also taught me patience
and respect for all the work
that goes into a quilt

I wish I could have known you better
I wish we could have
quilted this one together
sitting side by side
at a quilting frame

Thank you
for the beautiful quilt
for the time it took to piece it together
for the love stitched into each seam
for the threads connecting us together



quilt label

photos:
~finished Lone Star quilt hanging from the deck 28 February 2008
~1954 Grandmother Susan (aka Mama Austin) and me on the porch in McDonough, Georgia
~quilt label by local embroidery artist, Sandy Maynard


9 comments:

Pam said...

What a treasure! Thank you for telling the story...I am sure your Grandmother is very pleased, how could she not be?

Pam@
www.pamgwillim.com

Motherkitty said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Motherkitty said...

What a stunning piece of art! Your grandmother would be so proud of you. I think that's why she left you this last labor of love.

I absolutely adore how the finished piece is overstitched with all the seashells. Were these machine done? (I wish I had your talent.)

June said...

How lucky you are to have this piece passed on to you...and how wonderful that you carry on the tradition. I love the label! Someday, one of your great-grandaughters will treasure it and wonder about both you and your grandmother. Priceless!!

smbnotes said...

Congratulations on completing the "Susans' Quilt"! It looks like it was certainly worth the wait and the countless hours. What a feeling of accomplishment you must have. And it looks like that label will be around as long as the quilt--if not longer! Sandy

liz said...

Wow, you did it! Congratulations on having this project finally finished. It is beautiful, and the quilting is fantastic.
We just got a quilt in the mail from my husband's sister who made a patchwork of pieces of all her other quilts, with beautiful stitching.
It is so special to have something someone in the family made.....

I know you'll enjoy it.

Gypsy Quilter said...

Wonderful!

colleen said...

I love it and your words gave me a shiver.

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Susan, this is priceless. I think you should store this poem about "the quilt of the two Susans" in a pocket on the back of the quilt. Or somehow, someway make sure they stay together. And make a copy of that photo to go in the quilt's pocket, too. This seems like such a special family project! I hope your granddaughters will cherish it so much they'll show it to THEIR grandchildren.