Quilts of Faith
It is no surprise many of our quilting foremothers turned to their Bibles for inspiration.
Their faith is borne out in the Old Testament blocks Joseph’s coat, Job’s tears, Jacob’s ladder, David and Goliath, the Garden of Eden, and the Walls of Jericho. The New Testament is represented by Bethlehem Star, Angel, Palm Leaves, Gethsemane, Golgotha, and the Cross and Crown.
A dear friend of mine describes a certain category of church-goers as the poinsettia-lily crowd: those who appear on Christmas and Easter and are absent the rest of the year. Examining traditional New Testament blocks it seems to be a fit description of them too. They cluster around the birth and death/resurrection of Christ.
It’s enough to bring out the quilt detective in me. Why didn’t our grandmothers create blocks depicting Jesus’ baptism, the Cana wedding jugs, the fish and loaves basket, the walk on water, fig tree, mustard seed and tongues of fire? Didn’t anyone create a twelve-block quilt depicting the apostles? I don’t know the answers, but I am going to do some research and see what can be discovered.
Today quilters can find inspiration at Carol Honerich’s Patterns of Faith website dedicated to quilting biblical themes such as biblical women, the psalms and symbols of faith: www.patternsoffaith.com. One can combine making the blocks with an on-line Bible study. The quintessential quilting bee goes virtual!
Currently I am restoring a scrappy “Job’s Tears” quilt made by a grandmother for her grandson in the 1950s. One particular fabric didn’t hold up at all. Some replacement pieces were salvaged from an old Sears® pajamas top, a 1950s cotton quilt back and a piece of dress hem. Grandma would be pleased.
If any reader has an old quilt depicting others events from the New Testament, please contact me.
Alert: March 19 is International Quilting Day, so thread the needle or machine and quilt!
A warm welcome to the Waynedale Café for bringing little bit of Waynedale to downtown Fort Wayne!
Lois may be reached at www.bornagainquilts.com or 260-515-9446