Sunday, June 18, 2017

A Pit in Your Stomach

  Last Monday at our quilty group one of the women came in with these three pieces of very old quilts. We looked closely at the hexies and I found some of the 30's prints I have in my stash as reproductions so we determined this one was from that time period.
   This woman was asked by someone to "make these into three queen sized quilts, please."  No more than that.  Apparently there was a fourth and she already did make that into something.
    I was choking up with fear for the future of these strips because when finished they are to go to young people in their mid-twenties, great-grandchildren of the woman who pieced these thus far.We tried our best to talk her out of making bed sized, queen sized quilts that are going to be given to college kids.
 There are lots of the dresden plates and they are so very fragile.  The muslin they are attached to is very thin.
   The pile of plates is frayed around the edges, the middles are all different sizes and they are old. Old, old, old.  Could they be appliqued onto a background?  Yes.  SHOULD they be?  Maybe, to honor the woman who got them this far, but then gifted to 'children' who never met her?  No. I had a pit in my stomach thinking about it.
    These stars made me want to cry.  They were stored carelessly and mangled.  A gentle pressing will help them, but there is nothing near enough to making a queen sized quilt out of them.  A wall hanging, maybe.
     One of the other quilty friends and I were doing our darned best to talk the recipient of these pieces into NOT making them into queen sized quilts, into handling them with great respect and care, and NOT NOT NOT entrusting them to young people in their mid-twenties. But it's out of her hands, too, she was merely asked to do the work.
     Before you all descend on me with stories of your super conscientious worthy children, let me say that if they are, then they are the extreme exception.  I know of no college student who will care one whit about a quilt made from scraps from a great-grandmother they've never met.  Maybe someday, but not now.  These quilts are intended to be Christmas gifts this year and I can understand the desire to pass on some bit of family heritage, but oh, God, I weep for these. They are so fragile!
     The quilter who has them now to do the work asked if anyone could give her "some suggestions" on how to applique the dresden plates onto a muslin background because she doesn't know how to applique.  I said I would help, if only for the chance to work with something like these beauties, but the other half of my brain is just sick.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Little French Bistro

Little French Bistro by Nina George

     When you are married to a cad, a real heartless, selfish, mean spirited cad, what is your last recourse?  You think you just have to kill yourself. 
     Marianne is 60 years old, has been married to Lothar for over 40 years and she’s just had it so while on a ‘vacation’ in Paris, she gets up from the dinner table, walks to the edge of the Seine and prepares to jump in. She leaves her coat, her purse, her shoes, thinks about it one more minute and jumps.
     Of course this isn’t the end of her or her story.  She is rescued and eventually finds her way, penniless, to the Brittany coast where by default she finds herself working in the kitchen of a bistro.      
     She ingratiates herself to the people she meets in this place called the end of the earth. And they to her.  As her acceptance grows so does her confidence and soon Marianne transforms herself into a real person, something she didn’t know she was.
     I loved this sweet story.  A message to all of those at a certain age that age is just a state of mind and as long as you breathe there is a life for you.