Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Our Time

I sometimes wonder if I was born in the right age! Just this past month I FINALLY succumbed to the dreaded cell-phone plan! With a daughter at college and two boys involved in Boy Scouts and athletics and youth group activities, it's probably long overdue.  I'm being dragged kicking and screaming into the modern age.

Ironic, since I'm (clearly) online. :-) That's different. :-D  LOL

But I daydream of earlier times.  I've been listening to audio books while I applique and quilt by hand, and  I'm currently in the 5th of the series of The Secret History of the Pink Carnation by Lauren Willig.  The books are a little bit mystery, a little bit spy novel, a little bit romance, cool history stuff from the early 1800's.  I love 'em!

I'm fascinated by the stories of those long-ago days.  Maybe that's why I'm drawn to reproduction fabrics.  I'm working on an English paper pieced tumbling blocks because of an antique quilt top I purchased on Ebay (would you believe I got it for $30, shipping and all!). 

Karen Witt from Reproduction Quilts took a look at the top when she was at our quilt show a couple of years ago.  She dated some of the fabrics as early as the 1830's.  Cool.  There are still bits of paper inside some of the blocks with a script from an earlier age.  I feel like I'm in the presense of that erstwhile quilter of long ago! :-)

Another ebay find was this antique broken dishes quilt top.  I'm saving half-square triangles as I "quick piece" blocks so I can do a quilt like this one.
And finally, there's this beauty, also from the 19th century.  The hand quilting is exquisite! and while I'm not (yet) inspired to make all those little Lemoyne Stars :-D -- they finish at 3 1/2 inches! --  I think the quilt is beautiful and I wonder about the maker.

All this fascination with the past and its quilters, though, is just that.  Would I give up my rotary cutter, or my immeasurable choice of fabric, or my sewing machines? or my internet, or my ELECTRICITY!!?? Probably not.

Mordecai, uncle to Queen Esther in Persia of old, told her "And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?" (Esther 4:14b)

We are all, invariably, in the here and now because that is where we are supposed to be! When Paul preached at Antioch he told them, "David had served God in his own generation."  (Acts 13:36a) Likewise, we are here to serve God in our own generation.

In this age of internet and cell phones and instant communication, you have to wonder if handmade (even if we use a machine! :-D) quilts have a point.  Of course they do! We are preserving what has gone before us, and continuing traditions that matter.  We are forging new ways to create and express and dream.  We are passing along art and beauty and faith for "such a time as this."

Aren't you glad this is your time!?


farmhousequilter8 said...

I always thought I was supposed to be in another time...I guess that is why I love the westerns! While sitting with Julie at the cabin this past weekend, with no TV and Klove not on, I thought this must be how it used to sitting working on wool applique and Julie and I talking with nothing to distract was kinda nice.

Rhonda M said...

That is my favorite verse in the book of Esther, actually one of my favorites in the Old Testament. There have been so many times in my life where, in looking back, God was preparing my heart for something yet to come but I would not know it for many years later. I think this verse proves that God's word is forever and ever. I love your e-bay finds! I hope you have a day full of blessings and find some time to quilt. God bless.

Staci said...

Wow! You are a great e-bayer! What great finds!

You've been selected for a Sunshine Blogger Award!
To learn more go to this post:

Stray Stitches (Linda G) said...

Those quilts are just breathtaking. I especially like the one with all of the Lemoyne Stars. I can't imagine the time it took, especially with all of the beautiful hand quilting. I have become a follower via Staci at The Confused Quilter

Teresa Rawson said...

Hi Mary Lou,

I always feel like I was born in the wrong century (except for blogging, of COURSE!). As my husband would say, 'oh, don't get Teresa started on THAT...!"

That book series sounds like it is right up my alley. I love listening to good books on tape while quilting, or one of my movie adaptations of Jane Austen books.

Maybe that is why I love quilting. It connects me with a simpler, more basic time. Hand quilting is my slows me down and gives me a time to "be still and know" and contemplate the mysteries of nature and what-not. My non-quilting friends think I'm nuts, as they bop into Bed, Bath and Beyond and buy horrible imported fakie quilts. They also laugh that we prefer to eat at home, rather than eat out, and don't have the most up-to-date technology.

I love that snowball setting for little star blocks...hmmm...very instiring!

In stitches,
Teresa :o)

LuAnn said...

Great quilts Mary Lou. I especially love the broken dishes quilt. You got some great deals on eBay. I think the people that lived in earlier times had a different value system, work ethic, and spiritual outlook than many do today. The book series sounds interesting.

zarina said...

I was led to your blog by one of the sunshine recipient. Thank you for telling about the book - sounds very interesting because I too am interested in reading about the past years.

Barb said...

I like historical fiction too. I listen on my ipod while I walk the puppy and do laundry, and of course applique' - love it.
I'll have to check out your book. I just finished "The Swan Thieves" which is part history, party mystery, and a lot about painting. You may like it.

Cathi said...

I landed here via Crispy's blog. Love the quilts you found on eBay -- absolutely gorgeous!!
Sometimes I think I belong in another age but, when it comes right down to it, I really love all the technology we have available. I think it's all about how one uses the technology -- making us the one using it rather than it dominating our lives. Easier said than done, I think, in some cases.

Mary L. said...

I also found you on Crispy's blog and I'm so glad I did. I LOVE the little lemoyne stars and the quilting..oh my..heart stopping!

Dolly said...

I've just stumbled across your blog tonight and
(a) I love that you hand-quilt AND machine-quilt,
(b) I especially love how you weave stories from the Bible into your daily goings-on !

Thank you for blogging, sister in faith !

Rose Marie said...

Wonderful quilts and those are the kinds of quilts I could easily get lost in. I find myself quite content to just sit and do some hand piecing and that is something unheard of for me when I first started to quilt. There is just something about hand piecing.