A Gift From the Past

A couple weekends ago, we went to visit my Dad for a few days.  At one point, he said he had something of my great grandmother’s that he wanted to give me.  I’ve posted some of her embroidery before.  I really admire her hand work, so I was excited to see this:

GG Quilt

It’s a quilt that she made, and it’s entirely hand sewn.  This just blows my mind.  I’m not a quilter, and honestly don’t have much interest in it.  But I totally appreciate and admire this work.

I think it’s for a double bed.  I’m sure it was made for everyday use, and based on its condition, it looks like it was used.  I don’t know when it was made.  But I’m guessing sometime in the 60’s, or maybe even 50’s.  I’m pretty sure this was one of her earlier quilts.  I’ve seen two others she made, they were larger, and the blocks and stitching were more intricate and they were made with higher quality fabric.  She signed and dated those ones on the backside with embroidery, and they were made in the early 70’s.

Here’s some close ups of the quilt blocks.  Unfortunately some of the colors have faded.  I’m sure this was much more vibrant in its day.

GG Quilt
GG Quilt
GG Quilt

The last one is my favorite!  I just love the red contrast fabric. What a neat print.
GG Quilt

And here’s a close up of the hand quilting from the backside.  Even the bias binding is sewn by hand!
GG Quilt

Unfortunately, there are a few stains.
I’d like to try and clean it, but I’m scared to at the same time.  Anyone have any ideas of how to safely try and remove the stains?

I’m so happy that my dad let this come home with me!  I love having these handmade pieces of my family history.

GG Quilt


5 thoughts on “A Gift From the Past

  1. I’m not an expert on antique quilts, but I would bet that this quilt has been washed dozens of times already. It is still in pretty good condition. You can probably spot clean the stained areas in the sink with mild detergent without doing any damage.

  2. i’ve successfully used powdered OxyClean to clean a very yellowed and stained white blouse from the 1950s. for the blouse, i dumped a scoop or 2 into a bucket and added a couple of gallons of water and let it sit for a day. then handwashed it. since the quilt is bigger maybe try making some up and pouring it on the stained areas and letting it sit then handwashing that area? OxyClean doesn’t have bleach so the colors would be fine. good luck!

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