Photos by Loretta
This post will probably appeal more to the ladies that read the blog, more than the gentlemen due to the subject matter, however, I have learned that there is now quite a number of men that have taken an interest in the hobby of quilting. NO - Henry has not embraced this passion except for giving nice complements to me as I am learning.
|Applique Quilt for Payton|
Let me regress to one of my earliest childhood memories. My mother would join several other women, probably from the church or kinfolk, for a day of quilting. In the South, quilting provided a warm bed covering for the cold winter nights, as well as a means of socializing with friends and family and catching up on the latest events in their lives. This was their social media.
Lori and I Worked on this one for Trevor
These were not necessarily beautiful quilts by today's standards, because the tops were pieced together with any leftover scraps from dress fabrics (women actually tailored clothing for themselves and their children). The scraps were carefully tucked away in a shoe box and saved until there was enough to piece a quilt top.
|A Quilt from my Parents|
Probably from the 1940's
The quilt was held together by an old handmade wooden frame that was lowered from the ceiling by a hook and cord. While the bunch of "old ladies" pulled their wood backed chairs around the quilt in the frame, they prattled on and on and patiently sewed with needle and thread for hours on end, while I played under the quilt. At the end of the day, before supper, the quilt would be raised back up to the ceiling to hang until the next quilting day.
I recall several times, as a young child being sick with tonsillitis, one of our old handmade quilts being held up to the coal burning heater to warm up, and being wrapped around me to provide warmth and comfort. In those days, you didn't go to the doctor unless you were deathly sick, so that old, worn, cotton filled, pieced together quilt helped to make you feel better right away.
|Quilt from Childhood|
Now, years later....I have acknowledged my love of quilts and decided to learn how its done. It's not quite the same as in my childhood. There seems to be a resurgence in interest of quilting, but with a modern twist. People now use long arm machines, which costs thousands of dollars. They also purchase quality fabrics from specialty quilting and fabric stores that cost an average of $12-$15 per yard. They buy complicated patterns and electronic sewing machines that can sew hundreds of styles of stitches and even thread its own needle. Most piece the quilt top and send it off to someone that uses a long arm machine to have it quilted in elaborate swirls, feathers, and florals. Quilters are now known as fiber artists and quilting has become a very expensive hobby. Quilters have special shows, getaways, and even cruises!
This leads us to Sisters, Oregon. Back in the 1970's, a lady opened a new fabric shop, The Stitchin' Post, in Sisters, Oregon. To draw attention to her shop, she began displaying quilts outside her shop, hanging them anywhere she could find a space. This was a very successful strategy.
|The Stitchin' Post Storefront|
Where it all Began!
Today, every second Saturday in July, people flock to Sisters, Oregon to experience the largest outside quilt show in the country! I put this on my bucket list, and as luck would have it (due to Henry's skillful planning), we wound up in Sisters, Oregon for the 2018 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.
|Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show|
So, Henry dropped me off on the corner of a street in Sisters, while he made his way to a local trail for an all day hike. I'm going to stop reminiscing now and show you a few pictures of some of the totally awesome quilts on display. Unfortunately, I did not take the time to get the name of the quilter or the pattern name, since there were over 1,300 quilts to admire. I spent the entire day wandering the streets and still did not see them all. It is worth a visit - if you have any interest in quilts, put it on YOUR bucket list.
Enjoy viewing a few of the quilts on display at the 2018 show.