I believe fabrics play a big part in our life story and the clients who have sought me out apparently have that instinct too, looking for something they feel will become more beautiful with age.
My business is all about working with treasured vintage pieces.
Perhaps bits of wedding dress will be worked into a bolster cushion for a couple's bed, a mother's collection of doilies is used, or a piece of childhood curtains. Some people cherish hand stitching, connecting it to the mystery of an item's story.
I encourage my clients to use the pieces well and continue to add to them as they are worn and aged, to carry the story into the future.
With this in mind, I’m going to spend the next few posts thinking and talking about the ‘red betty’ quilt that I’ve shown here in a couple of photo’s. It is deeply personal to me as it is for my daughter. I might also go on to think/write about the mother-daughter relationship, as it was my mum who I watched sewing and recycling as I was growing up.
I sometimes remember funny little details of fabrics I was surrounded by as a child. Bathroom curtains, an odd vinyl seat cover or shelf cover, amazing home-sewn dresses, a fabulously illustrated character on a window blind in our caravan... I'm sure we all do.
These are such beautiful little fragments as they're sometimes so hard to pin down, yet all these little bits add up to form a story of each of our lives. The quilts I make are, I hope, a bit like this. They're little journeys or stories. For the clients who commission them they might be deeply sentimental and meaningful, with the intention of being passed onto future generations.
Well, red betty started out as an imagined story... and turned into my own. It's so precious and still has a whole lifetime to go so who knows what it will end up looking like, where it will end up, and what it will see and hear.