A Sweet Distraction

Apparently, I think I don’t have enough to do . . .

I just accepted a commission job.

But I couldn’t turn it down . . .

It’s going to be so fun to do, I couldn’t let someone else have all the fun!

A sweet little lady named Mary from the town next door called me up one day, told me she got my name from my grandmother’s former neighbor, and wondered if I’d come by her house to look at some quilt blocks and suggest something she might do with them. So I went by . . .

Man, she’s a talker, but she’s so darn cute! I was fascinated!

She has a RED living room — woman after my own heart, if we have the same favorite color.

She has the cutest little screened-in back porch/patio with a brick floor and a little table and chair set, perfect for sitting and chatting.

She pulled out a pile of antique flower blocks that had belonged to a lady she cared for in her last years, Vivian. Vivian left the blocks to Mary when she passed on. Vivian did not make the blocks herself, as she was not a quilter, and she did not tell Mary who made them or where she got them, but they are fantastic! They’re each different, there are 40 of them, and they’re not fastened to a background or anything . . . just loose little flowers that need something to be done with them.

I suggested to Mary that she attach them to background blocks just as they are, and put sashing between them, and turn them into a quilt. She immediately stated she wanted red sashing, while informing me that while she likes to embroider, she is not a quilter. She asked if I would take 4 of the blocks, make up a sample of what I was describing so she could get a better feel of what it might look like, then bring it back to her so she could decide. Since the flower centers were blanket stitched, I used a hand blanket stitch with 3 strands of black embroidery floss to attach the flowers to a plain white cotton background.

I got the sample section done last week. I dropped by to see Mary on Saturday, to show her the sample, and found her laid up with a broken foot! We had a great visit, and she was glad to have company. She grew up in the same town as my  mother, so I picked her brain over the diary project a bit. Turns out Mary grew up about a mile east of my mother on the exact same gravel road! She’s 4 years younger than my mother, but knows a lot of the same people, and has information about some of the places I’ve been researching, so I’m sure we’ll visit again . . .

Anyway, she loved the sample, handed over the rest of the flower blocks, and wants me to continue with my plan to turn them into a large quilt for her. I plan to have it finished sometime in September. Here’s the sample I showed Mary on Saturday:

I’m planning to take some pictures of the blocks before I do anything else with them, in their original state (minus these four I already stitched down). I’ll post updates of the project as it goes along, and most certainly show you the finished quilt when it’s done, so stay tuned.

I’m calling it Vivian’s Flowers.

Cuz I don’t have anything else to do . . .

Published in: on June 29, 2010 at 10:50 am  Comments (10)  

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10 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I love this! What a treasure…and what a great find in Mary, a connection to your Mother’s past…

  2. What a lovely project for you to work on. Somehow, making Vivian’s Flowers seems more worthwhile than something we might do for ourselves. You’re adding to this quilt story, and to history. Enjoy the process.

  3. What a neat project! If the quilt would get too big with that many blocks, you could make some matching pillows for her. That would be fun. I love that she grew up near your mother! Very fun.

  4. Ha ha! How awesome are those and what a neat lady! You will have fun with this one!

  5. What a treasure — both Vivian and the blocks, plus the connection to your mother!

  6. Finishing VERY old projects is a unique experience–I have done it only a few times and the satisfaction is hard to describe. I don’t know about your belief system, but it is very possible in my belief system that the Original Maker (whoever she is) is watching and cheering you on. Yes, you don’t really need another project, but what could be more worthy? I can’t wait to see the finish.


  7. Shelly, thats beautiful. Mary sounds so interesting and to have known your mom. Can’t wait to see the finished quilt.

  8. What a special project and special lady! I love how through Mary and the flowers and Vivian, you have made a connection to your Mom! You should submit this to story quilts when you have it completed! I adore the sample you made up – what a treasure! I know you have a lot on your plate, but I would haver bonked you over the head if you had passed it up! Hope Mary’s foot heals quickly!

  9. […] Vivian’s Flowers blocks all […]

  10. […] Report #29 Vivian’s Flowers . . […]

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