Sunday, May 14, 2006

On this special day, no doubt many of us are thinking of our mothers.
For those of us whose mothers have died, it is an especially poignant time, as we must be content with memories and reminders.
And talking of reminders, I do not actually have a great deal in the way of possessions that remind me of Mum. Just a few bits and pieces really. Funnily enough, the thing that I always associate with her the most is a set of plates that I purchased during the last shopping expedition that we made together.
Although Mum was a clever seamstress, and very good with her hands, she tended to "make something out of something else" rather than create. When I think of how much I spend on my crafts, I am reminded of how she would "make do" with what she could lay her hands on, a frugality that was the result of living through the Depression.
One very special treasure I do have, that was made by my Mother, is a Suffolk Puff quilt. This was made from the good parts that were left in old white cotton sheets after they became too worn to use on the beds. Much of this quilt has been made from old sheets that were withdrawn from use at Fletcher Christian Apartments. One reason that I am glad to have this quilt.....and also, I suspect, a reason that she made that my sister has a similar one made by our great-aunt Sally. Aunt Sally spent many years on this quilt. In those days, when sheets became worn, they would be cut down the middle, and the new edges would become the outside edges, and the former outside edges would be seamed together in the middle, thus extending the life of the sheet. When this area finally became worn, there was still good cotton or linen at the corners, and this would be put to a good use. In Aunt Sally's case, it would be used for her Suffolk Puff quilt. As a spinster, she did not use many sheets in her household, and so she needed to beg scraps from friends and relatives.
In her latter years, Sally's quilt was still just a little too small to cover a double bed, so she made the bold step of purchasing 1/4 yard of cotton sheeting to finish it. Having to buy that fabric really went against the grain!
Aunt Sally's quilt eventually went to my sister Sally, who was her god-daughter...and now we each have one of these very special heirlooms!
In my next posting I will post a picture of the two quilts together, and maybe tell you a little about Great-aunt Sally.


Cristina Rose said...

It was so nice to read the history of the quilt that nana made as I remember it so well.Please include more about great-great aunt Sally as your treasured memories are of a time and place in England that I cant imagine living in, but can through your memories.
Thanks for your beautiful thoughts, It is always wonderful to read them.

allie aller said...

Yes, please, more stories, Mary!

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