I knew last summer that I wanted to make a quilt using old sheets from my childhood (mostly my parents' king size sheets and some of my own twin sheets) when I visited my mother. She could not understand why I wanted worn and tattered sheets that have sat stacked in a tall pile at the back of her hallway cupboard for over twenty years. I knew why. The colors, the patterns, the feel of the cotton through my fingertips, and the smell, ah, the smell, tell a story and I want to write it.
The story of this quilt is an old one. It is about big ideas--loving and forgiving, living and dying, digging and growing, birthing and fledging, dreaming and resting--as much as it is about simple ideas--the beauty of blues and greens, the peace of sea and sky, the comfort of a parent's embrace.
I finally discovered in Cassandra Ellis' Quilt Love the right pattern: a celebration of a life well-lived. It is a pattern that has a path that runs from top to bottom and connects with many important stops along the way. While this quilt is a memory quilt in honor of my mother, I am aware that the story it holds is one about the continuity between a mother and a child. How one path leads to another, how one life gives life to another, and how one death brings about change.
Today I completed the first of eight panels.