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Thread: Did you ever wonder what happened to your quilt when the recipient passed?

  1. #1
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    Did you ever wonder what happened to your quilt when the recipient passed?

    I made a very cute, happy lap quilt for a dear aunt several months before she died. She had no idea that I quilted and was overwhelmed to receive it. She kept saying, "I can't believe you made this." I know that she treasured it. After she died, I 'assumed' her daughter or granddaughter took it but, no one ever said anything to me. Shame on me, I didn't put a label on it so I am not 100% sure they knew where it came from although they probably did. I don't want it back and hope they will keep it as a treasured memento of my aunt. I've thought about asking the daughter (my cousin) about it but, not sure if that's appropriate. At the time, I wasn't a very good free motion quilter so I wonder if they might have discarded it however, it was nicely pieced and constructed and I really can't see them doing that. The design was very cute. Have others had similar experiences?

  2. #2
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    I made a quilt for my Aunt and gave it to her just 5 days before she passed, My cousin said she wanted to display it at the funeral but did not want to offend me. I know they kept it as it was neatly folded on the sofa when I last saw it.

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    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    i've not given it that much thought. i enjoy the making of the quilt and when it leaves my home, it is no longer mine. if i happen to see my quilt later, i just give myself a smile because i know that it is being loved.
    Nancy in western NY
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    T – is it True? H – is it Helpful? I – is it Inspiring? N – is it Necessary? K – is it Kind?


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    I'd ask and let them know that you were in such a hurry to give it to her that you forgot to put a label on it but would like to so that the family would always know for whom the quilt was made and when. Let them you'd like to fix that and put a label on it now if possible. I wouldn't get upset if it were no where to be found because things happen in sad times but just in case it was still around. I read once that if you were giving a quilt to someone in a nursing home you should put the label on before the quilting because others in the nursing home have been known to steel quilts and take the labels off. If it is in with the quilting it can't be taken off without it being noticed. I thought that would be a good idea no matter what.
    Judy

  5. #5
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    No, never had that feeling. When I give a quilt to someone, it stops being mine. They are all labeled so the source is never in question and their fate is in someone else's hands entirely, without any regret.

    As for nursing homes, extended care facilities and the like, I think saying things are stolen is way too harsh. Most are simply picked up by residents who think they are their own. Most residences require labels on everything for that reason. Dementia is not even close to dishonesty.
    The Earth without art is just "Eh".

  6. #6
    Senior Member happyquiltmom's Avatar
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    I do agree that once you gift a quilt it is no longer yours. However, that can be hard, as they sometimes feel like one of our children.

    I made a lap quilt for my grandma when she was living in a nursing home. She loved it, but didn't want anything to happen to it, so she stashed it in her closet! When she passed my aunt gave it back to me. I then gave it to my mom, who still has it.

    The year that my dad died (1995), I made 5 small quilts out of his neckties. I gave one to each of my siblings, to my mom and to my grandma (the same grandma who got the quilt). Unfortunately, there were not enough ties to make one for myself. However, when grandma died, I got her necktie quilt back. So, it has a double meaning for me. I display it on my antique 1889 Singer 27 treadle sewing machine.

  7. #7
    Super Member raptureready's Avatar
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    I believe that I would continue to assume that one of them had it and was treasuring it and leave it at that. Should you ask and find out that it had gone to Goodwill or the garbage you will have bad feelings for a long time. Better to believe that they have it whether they do or not.
    If no one ever experimented we'd all still be making 4 patches.

  8. #8
    Super Member M.I.Late's Avatar
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    I'm with Roman - I would tell them you'd like to put the label on it. Let's face it - it should be on there. If it's no where to be found or they "forget", then just let it go. But, if you are able to, get your label on it and return it to whomever owns it now. It would be a shame if it was out there an no one knew it was made by a family member... If I had it, I would want to know that fact, and I would be honored to have the label placed on it. (Then I'd flip a coin - you win - you get it back - I win - I get to cherish it.) JMHO

  9. #9
    Power Poster joyce888's Avatar
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    My SIL returned the one I made for my brother. I did offer it to her but she said she knew I had put a lot of work into it and he had treasured it so she wanted me to get it back. The one I made for my Mom my sister made sure I got it back.
    Joyce

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  10. #10
    Junior Member Christine George's Avatar
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    I have a friend who's terminally ill and some years ago I made her a queen quilt out of the blues and yellows that she loves. I've wondered what she will do with it. She says her will is all made out. I'm not going to ask though. If I get it back that's great. If it goes to someone else then it will get loved on two times.

  11. #11
    Super Member Raggiemom's Avatar
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    I never really thought about it. I guess I just assume it will end up with someone who will love it and appreciate it, whether that's family or not.
    Heather

  12. #12
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    I've made several lap quilts for church members who've died. Never though about where they went.

    NOW, I'm wondering. Not even sure the surviving family knows where it came from.
    Bad Spellers of the World
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  13. #13
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raptureready View Post
    I believe that I would continue to assume that one of them had it and was treasuring it and leave it at that. Should you ask and find out that it had gone to Goodwill or the garbage you will have bad feelings for a long time. Better to believe that they have it whether they do or not.

    Good point!
    Bad Spellers of the World
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  14. #14
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    Unless someone quilts, old quilts are in the category as old blankets, bedspreads, sheets, towels, curtains, etc. when a person dies. Sad, but true. Just so much stuff you have to sell or give away or burn.
    Last edited by TanyaL; 03-05-2012 at 02:48 PM.

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    I think I would just assume it went to someone who will love it. If you ask, you will have to be prepared for an answer you might not like.

  16. #16
    Senior Member humbird's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghostrider View Post
    No, never had that feeling. When I give a quilt to someone, it stops being mine. They are all labeled so the source is never in question and their fate is in someone else's hands entirely, without any regret.

    As for nursing homes, extended care facilities and the like, I think saying things are stolen is way too harsh. Most are simply picked up by residents who think they are their own. Most residences require labels on everything for that reason. Dementia is not even close to dishonesty.
    It's not just residents who steal. We had 2 parents in nursing homes for a total of seven years. Some of the staff pretty much take what they want. As for residents with dementia, I doubt they would remove the labels if they accidently picked up a quilt belonging to someone else.

  17. #17
    Super Member clsurz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raggiemom View Post
    I never really thought about it. I guess I just assume it will end up with someone who will love it and appreciate it, whether that's family or not.

    Exactly!

    Once we gift it is no longer ours and it doesn't matter who ends up with it as long as it is enjoyed by the person receiving it.
    clsurz

  18. #18
    Super Member Chasing Hawk's Avatar
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    I made a lap quilt for my Aunt a few years ago. When she went on her journey to our ancestors. My cousin asked me if I wanted it back. I told her to send it with Aunt Joe, she would need it to keep her warm on her journey.

    To help my Aunt on her journey we placed the quilt, her favorite candies (circus peanuts and those fruit slices covered with sugar) a six pack of Bud Lite, and some scratch offs and a pack of smokes and her Zippo.
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  19. #19
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    Funny I should read this thread today...I just came home from my Aunt's home where I have just put her into hospice. We had to get her a hospital bed and didn't have bedding that would fit, so, I bought sheets and blanket, but gave her the quilt that my Mom made for my Grandfather over 30 years ago. I wrap up in it sometimes as my sewing room is cold.
    I told her that that was Pop's quilt...and that it's extra soft from lots of washing and use....she loves it and the fact that it belonged to her father.
    Tink's Mom (My name is really Susie)

  20. #20
    Senior Member SharonTheriault's Avatar
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    I made a lap quilt for my mom some years before she died. I couldn't be there when she died and asked my sister to send the quilt with mom when she was cremated. When we spread the ashes, the quilt will go with her. I guess I thought that the quilt was hers and would remain hers.
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  21. #21
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    I might wonder, but when I let it go, I let it go.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member patmas57's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chasing Hawk View Post
    I made a lap quilt for my Aunt a few years ago. When she went on her journey to our ancestors. My cousin asked me if I wanted it back. I told her to send it with Aunt Joe, she would need it to keep her warm on her journey.

    To help my Aunt on her journey we placed the quilt, her favorite candies (circus peanuts and those fruit slices covered with sugar) a six pack of Bud Lite, and some scratch offs and a pack of smokes and her Zippo.
    Chasing Hawk, I loved your reply. What a great send off package!

  23. #23
    Super Member SunlitenSmiles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghostrider View Post
    No, never had that feeling. When I give a quilt to someone, it stops being mine. They are all labeled so the source is never in question and their fate is in someone else's hands entirely, without any regret.

    As for nursing homes, extended care facilities and the like, I think saying things are stolen is way too harsh. Most are simply picked up by residents who think they are their own. Most residences require labels on everything for that reason. Dementia is not even close to dishonesty.
    What she said ! Totally ! IMHO Really well stated !

  24. #24
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    Ask them for it. I would
    Christine Tindell

  25. #25
    Super Member LindaR's Avatar
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    my sister's gave my mothers quilt back to me when she passed...so glad
    Retired and living in NE Michigan

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