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Quilts for Kit and Ruthie in Progress

My girls went on a sleepover to their Nan’s house over the Spring Break last week.  While they were there they had a little quilting lesson… and took full advantage of her wonderful 30′s fabric collection.

One Dresden Plate quilt and one hexagon for their 1930′s dolls- very time period appropriate I’d say.

The hexagon quilt isn’t exactly all 30′s replica fabrics, there’s lots of Lecein Old New in there too.  But it feels like a 30′s creation. Lily is now working on the hexagons for a quilt for Kit.  That means this little quilt has been worked on by her Nan, her mom, her sister and now Lily, of course.

Emma has been enamored with and asking to make a Dresden plate for at least a year now, so she was thrilled to be able to make one at her sleepover.  My mom tells me that she picked and laid out all the fabrics and did all the machine piecing by herself, with only a little guidance and only one seam that needed to be ripped and resewn.

Emma called me once she had finishing piecing her Dresden plate to ask, “Should I machine applique my quilt… or do it by hand?

“What do you want to do?” I asked.

“On the machine.”

“What does Nan think you should do?”  I asked.  Already knowing the answer.

“She said it will be much nicer if I hand stitched it.  I told her it will take forever.   But she said I need to enjoy the journey.”

Yes I know.  She’s given me that same advice a time or two.

“It’s your quilt Emma.  And your choice.  But Nan is right, it will look much nicer hand appliqued.”

So Emma is stitching by hand and doing a lovely job.  She does look wistfully over at the sewing machine occasionally. But I really hope she does learn to enjoy the journey.  What perfect advice, especially in our instant gratification world.  Because how much of our lives are taken up with slow progress or mundane everyday tasks?   There’s so much more joy to be had, even in an ordinary day, when we learn to enjoy the journey.

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11 Responses to “Quilts for Kit and Ruthie in Progress”

  • I love the Dresden- so pretty and happy. She did an amazing job! Love the advice and wisdom passed down, and that she was able to take it- and will have a physical reminder of it every time she sees her quilt!

  • Lori:

    I learned how to make these blocks last year in a quilting class for my 30′s quilt. I just love the pattern and fabrics so much! I am so proud of your cute girls!!! That is just amazing that they are learning how to do these. Do you think their Grandma would let me join them for a quilt lesson too??? :)

  • diane:

    I just LOVE both of these photos, can’t believe how awesomely beautiful they are. How old is the girl putting them together? I follow your blog, but lots of others too, so I don’t know the age of your daughter. I LOVE 30s fabrics, and these two pieces shown here are heavenly creations from 30ish looking fabrics, so glad I got to see them.

  • What a sweet story! It is true, every quilt has a story, and every quilter is on a journey. That is wonderful that your daughter quilts. How old is she?

  • I wish I could hand quilt everything. You’re so right. Cute blocks.

  • Stephanie:

    You are such a good mom! I really look forward to teaching my daughter (now 10 months) to sew for her dolls someday. Thank you for sharing your family stories and blog.

  • I love this whole idea… The 30′s repros… Children learning to quilt from a grandma… And appreciating the journey and the process!

  • Michelle:

    I just today finished hand quilting a Dresden plate quilt that was originally pieced by my grandmother and great grandmother out of fabric chicken feed sacks from the 1940′s. It has been a project that I have contemplated for over 30 years. It was appliquéd to muslin and all blanket stitched and I wanted to preserve those beautiful stitches. The feed sack fabric is in perfect condition and some of it looks and feels as crisp as brand new! I finally took the scissors to the never before quilted top whose muslin and sashing strips were beginning to tatter and fray. I re-appliquéd the plates to new fabric and began my journey. It is beautiful. I am so glad that your daughter took the higher, longer road and chose to hand appliqué. It was a wonderful lesson and one she will long remember; some things just need to be done the old fashioned way. I look forward to one day (soon I hope) being able to tuck a grandchild in under this quilt that holds so much family history.

    • Calli:

      Hi Michelle, Thank you for sharing! Now you are part of the quilt story from Great Grandmother to Grandmother to you. Be sure to add a label to your quilt! Even if you just write with a permanent marker (like a pigma pen) onto a square of muslin and applique it to the back, it will be such a treasure for your family long after you are gone.

  • Michelle:

    P.S. We called our grandmother “Nan” also

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