I thought you’d like to see my collection of old quilts . . . and get a dose of happy color to start your day! ♥
I started collecting quilts years ago, after my grandma gave me a quilt her mom had made. Besides the fact that my own grandma’s mom made it, and now it was mine, I fell in love with the simple clean colors and patterns. Now old quilts kind of set the tone for the rest of the decorating in my house. ♥
I piled these quilts to display in my store in California . . . they weren’t for sale; I wanted people who didn’t know, to see what quilts look like all together, as an inspiration that others may start a collection of their own. ♥
Many of the old patterns have charming names like Wedding Ring, Jacob’s Ladder, or Log Cabin. This one is Grandmother’s Flower Garden.
I love vintage quilt stands too…you can just get a peek at this one, it’s a painted “spool” style, my favorite kind, and yellow (!), almost as much fun to hunt for as the quilts. One of these in a bedroom and you have created a little bit of magic. ♥
Quilts are just as wonderful piled on the top of a hutch, bringing the eye up and popping some lovely color into a room.
People might think that quilts are only good for decorating in winter. Not at all. Winter, spring, summer, and fall, there is always a place for an old quilt.
Of course the end of the bed is the perfect place. What I love about them is the history they represent, and the beautiful handwork of countless creative women. None of these quilts is signed or dated. Yet you can hear the whispers of talk that went on at quilting bees when these were made, all by hand, all with little stitches, fireplaces crackling, needles flying, women connecting, making beauty! And being wonderfully fabulously practical at the same time! Warming their families. ♥ ♥ ♥ Love. Love. Love.
If you look close you can see there is damage on this very old, well-loved quilt. Did that make me say, oh I don’t think I will buy it even though they are asking almost nothing for it? No, I think not.
No, I run to its side, blocking it with my body so no one else notices it, gather it up and whisper, hello beautiful, would you like to come home with me? When I get it home, I fold it up, and drape it over a chair in the bedroom to make a cozy corner of history, love, color, and creativity.
Here’s another “Grandmother’s Flower Garden” ~ It’s interesting that the same pattern can look so different depending on the fabrics chosen.
They decorate the yard too . . . look how sweet they are hanging on a clothesline
. . . We live a block from the sea and I could sit in the garden with a glass of tea and stare at quilts flapping in the breeze that comes up from the harbor for hours…like meditation. Floating like butterflies.
Some quilts just seem especially social, they want to go out, they say, I like camping! Take me to the beach; let’s go have a picnic, I love the Fourth of July, let’s go to the fireworks! They make any picnic more charming.
Some of them say, let’s go lay under a tree, just you and me, and let the leaves fall down on us. Let’s bring our book. Let’s take a nap!
And some quilts say, let’s go get cozy in front of the fire. You just have to do what they say! ♥ It is wrong not to.
I love hunting for them; we find them wandering the back roads in old New England barns, in Iowa flea markets, in California antique stores, in Ohio junk shops, and island yard sales . . .
Over the years I’ve grown a quilt radar, and no place is really safe from it. Some quilts are so expensive (as well they should be for all the work in them), but I don’t buy those. I wait. I wait and wait. I am ever patient when it comes to quilts. I really don’t need a million of them. But when I see one that fits my beauty criteria that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, I get it. I hug it to me, I’m happy!
Quilting is not a dying art, thank goodness…amazing new quilts are coming up all the time. Here is a photo from a quilt show we had at my farm stand in California a few of years ago. Everyone made quilts using my fabrics for our contest . . . and these are the three winners! It’s as it always has been, a homeart, filled with beauty, and connection and heart. ♥