I was looking at this quilt that my Mom inherited. Someone four generations back made it from her old work dresses. I asked my Mom about who made it. As we talked, the thought crossed my mind, “quilts last longer then people.” Since then, I’ve wanted to share these pictures. My Mom remembered her great grandma Jenny in this little journal entry: “I will never forget the fun we had in your attic and in the orchard across the little bridge, the gatherings in the side yard with tables full of food, dainty crocheted doilies, scrubbing pots with you and you telling me that the way to make them shine was ‘elbow grease’, visiting you with my Mom to bring you a little Christmas tree when you were in a care center, but mostly, the excitement of having the long drive to your home end with you being there.”
The woman in this picture is the Great Grandma Jenny that my Mom wrote about. I’m not sure who the little girls are.
It’s so strange to me that someday, I’ll be a picture. A memory. Someone will have the quilt that “great great grandma Lauren made.” It kind of boggles my mind. Great Grandma Jenny died before I was born. All I know about her is that she was born in Sweden, she was the second wife of James Brown, and she made this quilt. Oh, and she never wanted to get a gas or electric stove (I found the picture below of her at her wood burning stove…taken around 1970). What’s fun for me is that holding her quilt…looking at the tiny stitches…reminds me that she had an entire life. She isn’t just a picture and I won’t be either. She’s a person. She lived in such a different era from me, but we both love quilting (or maybe it was a necessity for her?) Maybe she’d be shocked at me spending so much money to buy new fabric, cut it up, and then sew it into a quilt. Either way, she stitched and I stitch and there’s something that feels kind of friendly in knowing that. Here’s some more pictures of her beautiful quilt: