Quilt Display / August 23, 2018 / Roesia Merle.
Observe a playground of 3 year olds playing for a few minutes. They are the busiest little independent group of individuals. Each can make you smile cause you sleepless nights and give you the most love and joy you have ever experienced in your life. As a quilter designing a children`s quilt is much like these little ones on the playground. Each of the unique children`s quilts stand alone in a sea of other unique handmade baby quilts yet all belong to the collection entitled "Children`s Quilts." The quilter smiles and sews thinking of the child who will cuddle under the quilt each night. Yet those late nights spent making sure the children`s quilt meets with the high expectation of its maker if not long hours will be spent until the problem is resolved. But as the quilter adds the last stitches to the finished project she knows that unique handmade quilt will become another keepsake to her growing collection of the children`s quilts.
In olden days pioneer families that braved the hostile westward trails in hopes of finding new land and new lives had to stock up on supplies as they prepared for their journeys. They needed provisions that would not only assist with their safe passage but would help them to survive when they reached their destinations. Along with several months` worth of food ammunition and clothing it was recommended that every family pack enough bedding to last for a few years with two or three quilts or blankets per person.
There is a vast collection of books on quilting in existence today. Spirits of the Cloth: Contemporary African American Quilts stands out among them. In this book Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi gives African American quilters an emerging group within quilting a voice to be heard and an opportunity to be recognized for their outstanding contribution to the field of both art and quilting. Not only does this book outline in detail the beginnings of African American quilting and how it has progressed through the years it also provides stunningly beautiful photographs of quilts in this genre.
Mazloomi discusses how initially the work of African American quilters was largely ignored by the traditional quilting community as it did not conform to traditional commonly-held practices and beliefs surrounding quilting. Quilts created by African American quilters had naturally been influenced by the African culture from which the quilters and their ancestors had come. Even in the quilts of today the use of bold strong vibrant color can be seen in the quilts of their black creators.