I really didn't set out to make Quilters mad. It wasn't my intention. Though I'd be lying if I didn't admit that the day that I walked into the retail fabric store and saw that Quilting Worker eyeing me like she could tell I sometimes cut paper with my sewing scissors, I sort of wanted to make her mad. But just her. Not all Quilters.
But that's not why I (sometimes) take old quilts apart.
I think I do that because I want to be doing what my Granny was doing when she made her quilt tops in the first place. She was surrounded by things that everybody else would have thrown away--worn out clothes, upholstery samples from her husband's upholstery shop, ripped pajamas, dresses that didn't fit right, stuff with stains on it--and she wanted to make something with all of it rather than chuck it.
She was a scrapper.
The story her daughter tells of the time that a relative threw away Granny's bag of scraps is the saddest story I've ever heard somebody tell about her--and she lived a life with lots of pieces to her story that were quite sad (or could've been if she wasn't the woman she was). The one about the scraps being thrown away is always told in a tone of voice that indicates that the Thrower Away of the scraps Knew. Knew that Granny love to make things with old fabric scraps. That it was dear to her very being. And that throwing her scraps away would have been like throwing away a 7 year old's bike. Mean, really.
Now I have her quilt tops. I'm on my last one. Down to the bottom of the stack. I have a handful of sqaures with stains left. And one whole top. Amd I'm working with it to figure out whether I'm going to take it apart before I put it back together. I've been thinking I would leave it alone and build a denim back, turn it into some sort of picnic quilt.
Please pretend that this photo is focussed. That I wasn't jogging by when I took it. That my man son wasn't flinging his body in front of the camera to thwart my efforts. That I had cleared my dishes.That all that pink isn't yelling at all that yellow.
But the other day--while flopping different vintage sheets on top of the thing to see what I wanted to cocktail it with--I realized that I don't like it yet. That I see treasure in it, and I see things to unmix from it.There's some poly in there that needs to be expunged . . . and probably put back together to make something else.
So I'm going to take it apart.
But it's not because I'm trying to make the Quilters mad. It's because I'm a scrapper too.