A New Project

A few years ago, when I had a stultifying office job, I bought a quilt top for $10 on ebay.

It’s charming and colorful. I expected this to be a shortcut to learning to  hand quilt. I wanted to play with something I had no emotional attachment stitched into. Then rainbow unicorns would fly out of my butthole to take me to the quilt shop.

This is an astounding work. These six pointed stars are completely hand pieced. The fabrics look like children’s clothing, 70s blouses, summer dresses, and men’s shirts. There are some issues, which shall be detailed, but the adoration clincher came when I realized this:

Here we see a star that needs a repair and perfectly matching fabric

(wait for it)

From my grandmother’s stash.

It makes me wonder how, exactly, this quilt top came to be listed for $10 on ebay. Was a crafter’s stash being sorted through after his or her death? did this not make the cut during its maker’s cleaning spree? Or, as I’m beginning to think, it was stained, laundered, came out tattered, and a repair was abandoned. Exhibit A:

The fabrics that were less quilt-suitable frayed very badly. Some of the painstakingly hand stitched Y-seams have melted. In one place that I’ve found (so far) there was an attempt at a repair:

You can see the crease from the seam, the re-shaped diamond, and the messy attempt to stabilize one of the most disintegrated fabrics.

Despite the issues, there are such beautiful details. Fussy cut embroidered flowers? Yep.

Bowling shirt? Oh, hell yeah

I’m starting the process of repairing this top so that I can finish the quilt. I’ve identified issue spots with safety pins and I’ll be documenting the work necessary to restore this charmer. Check back.

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