A Silver Stitcher’s Story
Anne’s charming home caused me to gasp when I got all the way inside. Her thimble collection (over 1000) and its wonderful display leave you with no doubt that you are with someone who has a sense of history. This is further emphasized by the photographs of her ancestors and Anne’s documentation of her own quilts. She has kept a book filled with photos of every quilt she has made–its pattern, thread used, who has it now, color size and dates—currently 61 quilts. I could just sit in that room and be there for a very long time with that notebook. Gosh, I did overstay my welcome, I am sure. I can’t help but notice a New England influence in Anne’s exquisite piecing and appliqué. Maybe that reflects her heritage and time spent in the New England states. Anne’s first quilt was likely the one she made for her son in 1956 from a Baby Quilt Kit –that quilt is now lost. She went on to enjoy many needle arts for decades and came back to quilting in 1987, when she made a Double Irish Chain baby quilt in blue and white…hand quilted, like her great grandmother’s. She retired from teaching 8th grade English and Latin, bought a Pfaff and became a Calico Quilter in Roswell.
Beginning in the 1990’s she took classes and tried many different patterns and techniques, each time documenting the product and process in her notebook. More recently Anne has garnered a “few” awards. She has too many awards for her to remember – but they are in that notebook. Here are a notable few. She won the first Golden Thimble Award from East Cobb for a miniature adaptation of her maternal great grandmother’s quilt from the 19th century. She has won a couple of Bulloch Hall Members Choice awards - 2001 and 2009. She captured a second place at East Cobb for an appliqué in 2003 and again in 2011 for a Baltimore Album quilt that included squares representing places in her own life. Anne says that it took her 8 1/2 years to complete the quilt. Hmmm—seems like there was an East Cobb Golden Scissors in 2007… and that’s just a few, but enough to get the idea of the caliber of her work.
Anne defines quilts as “making a blanket of love” and the process itself brings her joy. Driving home I thought, what if a notebook like that fell into my hands and I had almost a whole body of a quilter’s work and stories? Why did you make this; who owns it now; and how did you make it? Those questions pop into my mind whenever quilts that I know nothing about cross my path --along with “who were you”? I know of only one quilter besides Anne who documents her quilts in this manner—and that quilter sometimes also includes photos of the recipients. Anne’s quilt journey will be one that endures because of her own efforts and those of the recipients of the notebook.
Karen Downer, Georgia Quilt Council
Silver Stitcher Chairman