14 October 2006

The Mom Quilt

Earlier this year I started a quilt that used a dozen cotton damask napkins from my mother's hope chest, dyed indigo using various shibori techniques. (I knew Mom wouldn't mind, because she'd dyed her own wedding gown dark blue so she could wear it again! Always practical, my mother...) The branching structure (family tree? river of life?) I cut from an old suede jacket of Mom's that I appropriated when I was in my teens and wore until it was literally falling apart. The back of the quilt is made from the tablecloth that went with the napkins.

I thought of it as the "Mom Quilt," and figured I'd show it to her eventually. It hung on my design wall for several months. It still needed something; Jerry said "bling," and I agreed, but I didn't know what.

Mom died at the end of June, and never did see "her" quilt. After her death, I embellished it with some of her many volunteer pins, and covered each of them with tulle or organza, so each pin is in its own see-through pocket. Voila: Bling. Instead of a conventional label, I made two pockets, one embroidered with my mother's name and dates, the other with my name and the year, and put some of Mom's laminated ID badges (more of her volunteer swag) in them.

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