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Thread: Why do we give quilts?

  1. #1
    community benefactor Conniequilts's Avatar
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    Over the last several months I have seen many people complain that their quilts don't get used and complain that their quilts do get used.

    Are we supposed to give directions with the quilts when we give them?

    Something like: if you aren't going to use this quilt please return it OR if you are going to use this quilt please return it.

    I, personally, am elated when my quilts get used. I don't even get upset when I am told there is an "owie" on the quilt. I just say, "bring it back, I'll fix it". If it's beyond repair (as I know one heading my way is) then it's time to make a new one.

    Just curious: why do you give your quilts and what are your expectations of use?

  2. #2
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    It's not mine after I give it away. No expectations, but I do offer life long mending for it ;-)

  3. #3
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    I want it so throughly used there's nothing left but shreds. I found out years ago a baby quilt I made for a friend's child became his security blanket and he drug it around after him until kindergarten. It was worn and had holes. My friend asked me embarrassed if there was any way to save it and was worried I'd be upset. I told him of course we could patch it up and I was thrilled something I made was soooo loved and cherished by his son. I'd love that to happen to all my quilts!

  4. #4
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DebraK
    It's not mine after I give it away. No expectations, but I do offer life long mending for it ;-)
    I agree, once I give it away, it is no longer mine. But that said, I do love it when they are worn out. My favorite quilt has holes worn all the way through it from use. It has been used for sleep overs, picnics, car trips, and cuddles on the couch. I would not take a million dollars for it, and no one would give me ten to take it.

  5. #5
    Super Member Murphy's Avatar
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    It is yours if I give it to you. How you use it is up to you. I would rather know it was used and even worn out then to think it was saved in a drawer for ????????????, but again, that is up to the owner.

  6. #6
    Super Member cherylynne's Avatar
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    I expect them to be used, but not abused. I know that they will be dragged around and then washed when dirty. I don't expect them to be put on the floor for the dog to lay on. If they get worn out, I know that they have been loved and like you, I will make another. If I am particularly attached to a beautiful quilt I may keep it awhile until I find someone "quilt worthy". I want the person to feel loved and hugged by my gift.

  7. #7
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I love to have my quilts used and loved but if they want to put it away and not use it that is their choice. Once a quilt is given it's no longer mine. No hurt feelings here.

  8. #8
    Super Member Shelbie's Avatar
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    I want my quilt to be used, loved and appreciated. I know once I give it away, I should have no say about how it is used or not used. However as quilters we all get a little hurt if our treasured quilts that we have worked so hard on get ill treated.

  9. #9
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    I definitely give it to be used. All but few of the quilts I made are for use. I do not like it to be abused though. I have a harder time with people who overly treasure my quilts. I made a twin for an adorable aunt and she has it hanging center on her living room wall like a piece of art. I had made it picturing her grand kids snugling in it or draped over a favorite chair for use. I am so glad she likes it but I was surprised I felt a little sad it was not used. So I am definitely more a please use my quilts person. Part of giving quilts is the hug I am sending along with it.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Vickymomof6's Avatar
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    Please use this quilt! That's what I tell everyone I make one for. I made one for my late mother and she tossed it in the closet, to me that is hurtful. My sister went to live and take care of her and she pulled it out and put it on the back of the couch so my mother could see it everyday. I got that quilt back when she died and I passed it on to my daughter that was married in September :-) I even had to patch two holes before giving it to her.

    Vicky

  11. #11
    moonangel12's Avatar
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    Like others have said, I want it to get used, but not abused. I don't want them to turn around and use it in a dog crate/house or anything. It would be more than a compliment for a baby blanket to be worn to shreds.

    I am making one for my dad (hopefully for Christmas!) and I am giving it with the disclaimer that it is not to be given to his beloved dog (the man has never been an animal person until this dog, and now he does nothing but spoil her rotten). I made her a bed, he gets the quilt.

  12. #12
    Super Member starshine's Avatar
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    When I was younger I would put my treasured items away so they wouldn't get broken or ruined. I guess to me they were too precious for every day. Then I read an article by Erma Bombeck (after she was diagnosed with cancer) about how she saved the good china for special celebrations, and her special perfume bottle was still full because she was saving it for special occasions...etc. and she suggested we use our "special" things in our living every day so we could enjoy them rather than pass them on unused or hardly used after we die. So then I started useing things more often. But when my aunt died and one of the things I received was a bowl that she always put the mashed potatoes in for holiday and family gatherings (she took care of grandma so all the aunts & uncles would gather at grandma's house) when I was a child growing up. And I liked having it as a memento of that time. My husband and I were so far away from there that we had never spent a holiday there. When telling a friend I had gotten this bowl and a few other items, she said 'and use it often yourself-that's how memories are made. And if it breaks, you and your family will have memories of using it too. But what memories will your kids have of it and her if it is in the cupboard and never used?'. These lessons taught me to use my "special" things. When I have read on this board of quilters commenting someone is not quilt worthy because they put a quilt away on a shelf and never use it, I wonder how many of those folks are saving it because it is so special to them rather than not using it because they don't care to have it. If you find someone has put your quilt on a shelf or in a drawer, let them know you would like to see them use it so they can have memories.

  13. #13
    Senior Member dgsmom's Avatar
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    when i give a quilt i hope it is used. that is why i gave it to them. most of the people i give to know how much is invested to make quilts.

  14. #14
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    When I give a quilt I hope is is used even if it is abused. When my DD laid on the couch for a year recovering from not 1 but 5 surgeries the quilt she was wapped in not only cuddled her it was abused. She was only able to touch fleece and flannel from the the nerve damage her injury casues. I needed a flannel quilt ASAP, it was made within a few days and tied it since I only hand quilt and it had to be done. The only time it was not cuddled was when she was at the doctors. I had a window of 2 hours to wash and dry the quilt. It was draged on the floor from the bedroom to the couch. There was pasta sauce and soup along with vomit all on the quilt. As I said she HAD to have her quilt. The vomit and food got spot cleaned until the next doc appointment so it could be wash. The appointments were 2 days a week so it wasn't like it was totally filthy. A few months ago Maryjane and her quilting group sent DD a small quilt, she loves it and cuddles it while laying on the couch. The flannel quilt is still folded for her to use as the weather is getting cold however it is stained and can not be cleaned but it was much loved and much used. You would never know it is 1 year old but the comfort it gave her was all that mattered. I am sure after her next up coming surgeries it will go through the same abuse. I realized life is short when you give something to someone it is NOT suppose to come with instruction they should do with it as they please. If people have problems with what is done with a gifted quilt then prehaps they shouldn't give their quilts as gift. Or is it that the people who don't want their quilts used/abused are just control freaks and no matter what a person would do with a gifted quilt the giver would not approve.

    Once you give it is no longer yours to have any say in how it is used, stored, folded, washed or anything else. You wouldn't do that is the gift was a sweater OR WOULD YOU???? why do it for a quilt, just because you made it? That was your choice to make the quilt but not to dictate how it is used. Babies don't come with instructions why should your quilt????

  15. #15
    Super Member fabric_fancy's Avatar
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    i have seen my quilts being used as art on the wall to comfort for their pets.

    i don't mind how my quilts get used - people love their pets too and if they want a quilt for their dog or cat i'm happy to provide.

  16. #16
    moonangel12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fabric_fancy
    i have seen my quilts being used as art on the wall to comfort for their pets.

    i don't mind how my quilts get used - people love their pets too and if they want a quilt for their dog or cat i'm happy to provide.
    I guess I am just not an "animal person" (I know many on this site are though)... I would cry if my dad's quilt ended up in the dog's crate.

  17. #17
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    What I dont understand is, You give the quilt away. It isnt yours any more. If they let the dog sleep on it, by god then the doggy gets to use it with love. how ever they show love. I had a great doggy who destroyed my bed quilt. she thougth it was ok to sleep on my bed if she rolled the bedding back. In doing so she put holes in my fist full size quilt. Ok not her fault she never was alowed to be on the bed. Yet you hear some people who get upset becasue a dog is lying on a quilt. big whoop.Fur babies think they are peole, make a nother one. if noe then dont complain how it is loved. your way is not of treating a quilt is not nessesarly thier way. You make em, they use em thier way, get over it.

  18. #18
    ckp11271's Avatar
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    I try to remember that once I give the quilt, it is no longer mine and I have no say in how (or whether) it gets used. However, I would much rather know that my gifts are being used and loved (OK, maybe not in a kennel), than hidden away somewhere.

    I always make sure to include washing instructions when giving them, so that they know up front that it is OK to use it, get it dirty, and then throw it in the wash.

  19. #19
    moonangel12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stewyscrewy
    What I dont understand is, You give the quilt away. It isnt yours any more. If they let the dog sleep on it, by god then the doggy gets to use it with love. how ever they show love. I had a great doggy who destroyed my bed quilt. she thougth it was ok to sleep on my bed if she rolled the bedding back. In doing so she put holes in my fist full size quilt. Ok not her fault she never was alowed to be on the bed. Yet you hear some people who get upset becasue a dog is lying on a quilt. big whoop.Fur babies think they are peole, make a nother one. if noe then dont complain how it is loved. your way is not of treating a quilt is not nessesarly thier way. You make em, they use em thier way, get over it.
    I didn't mean to start a debate! Laying on a bed on a quilt to me is far different than balling it up in a crate anyway. That was a bit harsh though... I'm done. Moving on.

  20. #20
    Super Member I go To The Sea To Breathe's Avatar
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    TruePeach you said it all. Blessings

  21. #21
    Super Member SherriB's Avatar
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    I give them with love. If they put it up and never use, that is okay. I have done that before too. If they use the quilt, love it and even abuse, that is okay too. I also done that with quilts that have been given to me. It is a gift given from me without any kinds of conditions or strings attached.

  22. #22
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    i agree totally with you...if the quilt comes back beyond repair it is time for a new one...and when someone says...i will put it away...it is too good to use ...
    i take it back, and tell them in that case i will take it back and try again to make you one (usable). when this happens they usually grab it back and say ok..i will use it :thumbup:
    seriously...what are you saving them for? i remember my grandma having some dishes that no one was ever allowed to use...so when she died...they went to the salvation army, there was no sentimental feelings toward them, no one ever got to use them so they meant nothing to anyone in the family...as dishes never used....was there really a point to her not letting them get used? i do not get it...and i do not have unlimited storage space to fill with items that should never be used. if it is valuable enough to own is it not valuable enough to put to use?
    the more wear and tear the better!

  23. #23
    Super Member katyquilter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Candace
    I want it so throughly used there's nothing left but shreds. I found out years ago a baby quilt I made for a friend's child became his security blanket and he drug it around after him until kindergarten. It was worn and had holes. My friend asked me embarrassed if there was any way to save it and was worried I'd be upset. I told him of course we could patch it up and I was thrilled something I made was soooo loved and cherished by his son. I'd love that to happen to all my quilts!
    I have several I have kept from my children's childhood days which are in shreds, but I wouldn't have it any other way. Every time I see the worn quilts, I think of all the fun they kids had dragging them everywhere. What memories I have of my worn quilts!!

  24. #24
    Senior Member magnolia's Avatar
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    I make mine to be used. The first one I made was for my mom. She told me she put it in a spare room because she was afraid to mess it up. It hurt my feelings a little bit, but I got over it and she has requested I make another one for her to use (and with flannel backing so it would be warmer). So sometime in the next year I will be making her another one. My nieces take theirs everywhere with them, in the car, to the babysitters, everywhere. My sister used to apologize for them dragging them around and I told her I didn't care, they were made for the girls and they can do what they want with them. When it's time for a new one I will make another. After I told her that she was completely fine and no longer feels bad. But, now she wants one-she will get one at Christmas.

    I have hesitated on making one for my youngest brother and sister (17 yrs old and 14 years old). But, that is okay because they NEVER say 'thank you' for anything. A 'thank you' goes a long way and it really does hurt that for every holiday and birthday I send them something and they don't even have the decency to call and say thank you or that they even received it. They are old enough to no better-and their parents should make them call. Sorry, for the little rant.

  25. #25
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I give them to be used and loved and dragged all over the house is that is what the recipient wants to do with it.

    But please don't tell me you used it to cushion the furniture in your dirty truck or used it as a painting drop cloth!!!

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