What to do with quilt

Old 06-27-2020, 10:03 AM
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Many years ago my mother would complain that my father would lay on the couch and take a nap when he got home from work because she did want him to get the couch dirty. Now that was a fair assumption on her part as his business was repairing electric motors. So, I made a quilt to put on the couch for him to sleep on and my mother could simply wash the quilt and not fret about it getting dirty. He loved his qult.

After he passed, my mother made her way into a retirement home and brought that quilt with her. When my SIL saw that Mother had brought that quilt with her to the home, she refered to it as “that dirty old quilt.” I just laughed and said that Mother wanted it. Truth be told, it does look like a dirty old quilt on purpose! I made it with various greys and darker colors with trupunto hearts in squares so that it wouldn’t show the dirt and both parents would be happy. Mother lived to be 106 and I now have that quilt with me. Now, what do I do with it?

I do not have children, but I think perhaps a grandchild or great great grandchild of theirs might treasure it and the history. But, it may mean more to me than to them, like, who wants a “dirty old looking” quilt? It’s in fantastic shape, so that’s not an issue. My family lives in Michigan and I’m in California so it’s not like they can look at it first, or maybe they’d say they want it to just please me. Or maybe wait until my nieces or nephews have grandchildren of their own and give it to them to put on the carpet for the children to play on?

Sorry for such a long post, but I knew my quilting friends would understand and other people not so much. Any suggestions?

Penny
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Old 06-27-2020, 10:10 AM
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Keep it. One day, you may find that someone else loves the history of it. I know when I have gifted quilts, I've been surprised to find who genuinely uses their quilt. Some just put it on the shelf and never use it. Be sure to write the history of it down for your papers. If you ever quit using it, put the papers with it. When we closed out my mom's house, I found a blue embroidered baby quilt. Pinned to it was a rusted note, saying, Aileene's baby quilt made by Willie. Mom was Aileene and Willie was my grandmother, she was evidently either expecting a boy or just liked blue. I had never seen it before.
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Old 06-27-2020, 10:13 AM
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What a nice story and a lot of memories. I think for now you write up the story and fold it up in the quilt and just let them sit for a bit. The right person and occasion generally presents itself.

When we store quilts, they shouldn't be in plastic. People do different things like fold them within a sheet, or put them in a pillow case after they are folded. You don't want to squish the folds down too tightly, some people will put in a rolled up towel or something, and you want to put it in a box so it doesn't get crushed or at the very least up on top of the closet.

It can be ignored like that but ideally a couple times a year you get it out and refold, so if you went in half then in quarters, you might go in thirds this time.

My husband, also from Michigan brought his grandmother's old sewing machine with him when he moved out here. It isn't a treasure, off brand, that dull grey/black finish, nothing fancy just a plain old sewing machine. But it was always there at the farm, and the sound of it is part of the sound of his childhood. Currently it and it's cabinet act as a lamp stand under a picture that my grandmother painted and that was part of my childhood. Again, not a treasure to any one but a reminder of memories and people past.
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Old 06-27-2020, 11:00 AM
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It is so hard to decide what to do with a quilt that has history. Please write down the story that goes with this one and the close date as to when it was made and other important dates attached to it like when dad passed, mom went to the retirement home and when you got it back after mom's passing. Attach this memory note to the quilt or at least a picture of the quilt with the note so that someday it will be found and treasured again if you don't send it off to other family. This is a true treasure with a beautiful history.
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Old 06-27-2020, 11:10 AM
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I think that is so cool that you made it to please both your Mom and Dad - and that it meant enough to your Mom that she took it with her to the nursing home!

I agree with attaching the history to this quilt - and if you like it, use it!
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Old 06-27-2020, 11:16 AM
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Make a label with the history of it and sew it to the quilt. Once you are gone, it would be a sweet remembrance for those left behind.
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Old 06-27-2020, 02:01 PM
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Lucky you to still have it. I hope you can find a nice Relative to give it to.
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Old 06-27-2020, 04:20 PM
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having just helped some with a deceased cousins house, I agree that finding the right home for those things that are important to us is hard--I like the idea of attaching a note with the history and waiting a bit if you can--I've been pleasantly surprised what things each of the kids wants--turns out my son is probably more attached to stuff that is family history than my daughter. And I have to admit that some of the things that I have from grandmothers or my Mom sit in storage when I really should be using them!
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Old 06-27-2020, 07:15 PM
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Was one of your parents grandchildren especially close to them? I know my kids treasure anything that once belonged to their grandparents. Ask if they would want the quilt. It would be so nice to know that it went to someone who will love it for its history.
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Old 06-28-2020, 11:18 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions! I think I'll just keep it for a while and wait until just the right person presents itself. I am emotionally bonded to this quilt and hope it finds a home where it is loved too.
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