Saturday, January 15, 2011


The letter below is from my dear friend Linda Pederson who I spend time with when I teach at Aunt Mary's. She has taken my classes and she "gets" story quilts. I think this letter is beautiful and it made me so happy that Linda is a kindred spirit.
I often talk about "being a light in your world" and this certainly is sharing light with people who long to tell their lifetime stories.
She writes-

I just had to write and tell you about the latest impact your story quilt genre has had on my life. I worked on the idea for a quilt about my dad's family in a workshop at Aunt Mary's Quilt Shop -when you stayed with me and I fed you sugar cookies. It tells the story of my dad's family moving from the wheat fields of North Dakota to the forests of Forks, Washington in the late 1920's. At a recent family gathering, I snapped this photo of my dad and his sister and brother holding the quilt, each situated above their quilt character.

Sadly, this October my father had to enter a care facility because of his failing memory. To help ease his adjustment, I brought the quilt to the nursing home and together we talked to several groups of residents about the quilt. With a little prompting, my dad was able to tell the stories behind some of the symbols. Well, what happened next was so heart-warming. Many of the before rather silent and sad-looking residents starting telling stories from their childhoods. Many had memories of their grandmother's and mother's quilting. Consequently, I bring one of my quilts periodically to share so the residents can touch them and remember.

So see what you have generated. I thought you would like to know how your creativity and inspiration has touched others, Mary Lou.

Linda Pederson

And next....

This darling quilt was made my Martha Mullen who took a workshop from me in Baltimore. WONDERFUL Baltimore. Anyway, this quilt is titled "My Dog is Better Tah Your Dog." Don't all dog lovers feel the same? She wrote and asked what she should enter this in? Should it be traditional, innovative, or wall quilt? What do you think? You helping will give her a good idea of where to put her quilt. I don't enter shows so I haven't as much experience as you all do.


West Michigan Quilter said...

What a beautiful post with such lovely stories. Gives me inspiration to get my story quilt finished. Maybe it will help my mother remember things too.

WoolenSails said...

Are those the only categories? What about a creative category? I would have to put it under wall quilt with just those three. When I think of innovative, I think of embellishments and different ways of making a quilt. Hers is definitely creative and fun.

I do love the story of Linda's quilt. I want to make lap quilts for residents and maybe I could go in and talk with some, to find out about their lives and make one, so they have memories to wrap around themselves. Love that idea.


Sandi said...

I remember Linda working on the flying pig at Aunt Mary's it is so nice to see the finished project Linda.

What joy it has brought to the people your dad is living with.

I think the second quilt should be in the innovative wall quilts. I don't think too many people would call it traditional! What another great quilt.

Anonymous said...

OH! THANK YOU for sahring that touching story! Sniffles and nose blows of joy! I think that Mullen quilt should be in it's own catagory - quilts that make you smile! :)Stephanie

Duff said...

thank you for sharing the photo and letter! I had tears in my eyes as i read her words. It's amazing how quilts bind lives in so many ways!

I can't answer your question--I'm not a person who enters quilt shows.sorry!

Terry said...

Linda's story is so inspirational and I would enter the Mullen quilt in the innovative category.

Nedra said...

What a wonderful story. It's amazing the many ways that quilts effect our lives and the powerful influence for good upon those we love.

Mrs Moen said...

The story gave me goose bumps; how wonderful! I couldn't help noticing the Norwegian flag in there, you don't see many of those around.-)

Pam said...

oh my.. that story brought tears to my eyes!!!
that is awesome!!
I need to get busy with my stories.. while I remember them!!! :0)