The Quilts From Iowa

The quilts from Karen and Sharon

It was a big box, but not heavy enough to be filled with fabric. I didn’t recognize the name on the return label, I wasn’t expecting it.

I cut open the box in the darkness of the dining room and peered inside.  Through the faded amber glow that filled most of the box, I could just barely make out the aged white fabric and hand stitching. I felt like I had opened a cupboard door in an abandoned house and found a treasure lovingly preserved.

I reached my hand into the box breaking the spell and pulled out one neatly folded quilt only to see there was another beneath it.

It wasn’t until I got them outside, in the light of day, that I saw their true beauty.  Soft pink and gray triangles gave quiet life to the traditional quilt patterns.   The quilts whispered.  Emotion swelled inside of me like a thin fog sifting through my body. I let myself feel it, tears welling in my eyes.

“Our sister has seen some of your work with other quilts.” The note from Iowa read “We are in the process of going through some of our parent’s things.  I hope you can put these to good use.” 

I know these quilts have meaning for Karen and Sharon who signed the note and their sister who suggested giving them to me.  They took time and considerable expense to send them.

Their sister knows enough about my work to trust them to me.  Maybe she knew I would be able to hear, to feel their story.

And now I get to combine their message with mine to make something new.

5 thoughts on “The Quilts From Iowa

  1. That quilt in the picture is the same pattern, and probably age, as those I have from my grandmothers. It sent chills through me to see that picture. What a loving gift. Looking forward to seeing what you do with them.

  2. What a blessing for you to work with these lovely quilts, and also to the family who can pass them on and know they are going into good hands . . . Don’ t you love all the hand stitching and choice of fabrics and patterns? I know you appreciate all the time, effort and creativity that went into them, enjoy! 🙂

    1. Definitely Judy, I think of the women who did all those small stitches and the choices they made when picking the patterns and fabric. It’s a wonderful connection.

  3. I’m glad to see you got the quilts my sisters & I picked out to send to you. And you’ve already seen something I didn’t – the grey triangles. (We didn’t look at them in outside light.)

    I’m glad they will be used to create more beauty in the world.

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