Wednesday, September 13, 2006

the secret of the violet quilt


this weekend at my sister in law's house.. I saw this quilt.. I never saw it before.. and she didn't do quilting.. when I asked she answered that it belonged to her mother.. my mother in law died a year ago.. and she was a crafter too.. before she had a diminished vision.. and she always regretted this..

but this quilt ..I saw it first time.. we looked closer.. it was the perfect size for a child's cot.... and probably it belonged to my husband or one of his brothers..

my niece.. she is 21.. who was the closest to her grandmother.. joined us and said that she remembered another one.. similar to this.. that her grandmother was covering her with.. for afternoon sleeps..

I noticed the center pattern.. a heart.. it was not her style you know.. hearts.. she was a bitter lady.. not even hugging her children and grand children.. had life change her that much.. or was she always like that?.. this I can't know.. but she was not a heart type.. so curious ..I asked.. if she did it.. 'I don't know' answered her grand daughter.. .. 'but I don't think so'.. and she continued.. 'it was very pale blue.. before we dyed it in violet.. if it was her, who did it.. she would choose a darker colour.. to prevent getting dirty easily.. she was a practical woman .. not a romantic personality..'

but who knows .. maybe she was romantic before.. and she prepared this for her first child.. without caring about dirt and practicality..I can easily imagine a young woman.. choosing light blue colour.. and heart pattern for her first child..life is hard.. and if you have 4 children.. and during those impractical years of 1948 to 1959..it must be a difficult life.. feeding ..cleaning..heating .. washing..sewing..knitting for the needs of five people during years may change our priorities.. pleasure may be left behind.. and I remembered a talk between us when I was pregnant for my daughter... I told her that I was trying to make a patchwork cot-cover for the baby.. and that as my son was young..he wouldn't let me..and I had to wait for him to be asleep and that made me impatient.. she said..''don't worry .. you'll finish.. we did it too .. after they all were asleep.. and the stove-oven went cooler.. I leaned to the stove and did sewing and knitting in the light of an oil lamp''.. I felt so embarrassed that laughing answered her.. so I should shut my mouth up mum.. I have central heating.. and electric light.. and if I can't finish it.. I have a house maid to help..I earn money and there are so many patchworks to buy ..in the stores.. yes she said.. you all are luckier than us..

I do craft for pleasure.. she did for the needs of her home.. that is why we can't imagine her doing frivolities.. life changed her into a frugalities woman ..

did I say that I believe..being a crafter makes you a philosopher too.. crafting is leaving signs of yourself to the world.. sometimes.. overt signs.. but sometimes puzzles.. keep crafting ladies..the world needs it..

5 comments:

Connie and Rob said...

It amazes me the beautiful work that has been passed down from those generations. I am sure back then quilting and other crafts were just something you picked up from your mother for necessity. They didn't even know each item was a masterpiece.

I hope the mystery quilt was done by your mother-in-law...

Take care,
Connie

Cat said...

I enjoyed reading this, and yes it is so true how people's perspective can change from young hope to worn out reality. It is sad when bitterness enters in. Art marks a spot in time, that is neat.
Have a great day.

dogfaeriex5 said...

i love your writings..so glad i walked into yuor blog..
~k

One Crabapple said...

Such a wonderful blog here Pinar

I was so interested to read through your story...

it made me think of many things of course.

You are right about leaving parts of ourselves behind as our artwork goes out into the world - and who knows where it will end up and with who. I think you are so right about it being
important. We do leave a message behind for the future to find. Hopefully the messages we leave....are good ones and keep hope alive.

I also thought about all of the women making things out of necessity for survival

well I feel that doing my art work is a necessity and for my own survival !

But for women that HAD to make quilts for bedding ... and the outlet this was for expression and the use of thier precious working time doing double duty... a way to get together with other women - still not "wasting" thier time - but being able to socialize and learn from one another . To CREATE and breath and SURVIVE ! to make designs and beauty.

Your blog this day made me consider many things .... thank you.

And this is a BEautiful quilt. I think overdying it in purple was such a nice idea. It came out really pretty.

I am sure your mother in law's heart was truly in it at one time.

Who is to say it did not stay right there. You are lucky to have a piece of the good part of her yet with you.
I am sure wherever she is now...she would want you all to see her heart - not the darkness. But ! you are also allowed your thoughts after all her bitterness. Don't get me wrong ! I understand that too !

I hope the quilt will help everyone heal. It had you talking anyway. That must be some kind of magic.

Love, S.

Laura said...

I am so glad I read the story of the violet quilt. It makes me think why sometimes people seem mad and bitter...there is something else going on inside of them based on their past life history. I also love the last paragraph where you encourage us to keep crafting and leave something behind. Lovely thoughts. Thank you!