Monday, January 5, 2009

Let's Celebrate Three Kings' Day!

Lady Mudwerkes, let's have our own little arcane celebration of the arrival of the Magi. And anyone else out there within easy driving distance of Bedford, too. Tomorrow, around lunchtime. Give me a call (606-1758) if you're in.

I'm working on a quilt that I started in Georgia a few years ago. It's a postage stamp quilt, and I decided to make it queen-size so that it can actually be used on a bed (mine and DH's), so as you can imagine it is taking a while. I get distracted from it all the time (see previous posts), but my first New Year's resolution, ahead even of losing the weight I found since returning to Indiana, is to finish it. I'll post a picture when the blocks are all complete and sewn together.

I was trying to remember whatever prompted me to begin such a time-consuming project. I was asked to give a presentation in the spring of 2004 at an American Studies Conference at Tbilisi State University, and since quilts had been such an important part of my life, I chose to do the presentation on quilts. I had a few wonderful examples with me in Georgia, including two by quilting genius (and my sister-in-law) Kay Capps Cross (you can see her work at, and one by my daughter Isabella. I had a poignant story to tell about DH's rescuing the two quilts my grandmother made me in the middle of a military mutiny that reduced Bangui to rubble and forced us to flee that African city with a single suitcase. To complete the presentation I went on line and found some pictures of all the major American quilt designs, and there were a couple of stunning postage stamp (i.e., made from tiny pieces) quilts. I was obsessed with the possibilities--a way to create something beautiful and use up the tiny scraps I had collected over the years. And so I began a project that has given me countless hours of pleasure, in the downstairs sewing room in Tbilisi, and in the upstairs sewing room in Bedford. And I still haven't run out of scraps, although I'm constantly looking for new prints to salvage, just to keep things interesting.

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