|Before you laugh - I know these are not pretty! They are not even all that well made. But - keep reading.|
|I have covered up names and other details - TMI for the internet!|
The lesson I learned came a few weeks back when I followed my aunt into her attic to look at old quilts. What I discovered up there was enough quilts to do a large antique quilt show of quilts from 1900 - 1950's. No joke! The place is like a museum... and there was an astounding number of quilts up there. But the really cool thing was the way they were packaged and labeled. Each quilt was neatly folded, covered with a plastic bag and then placed in a box to protect it from dust. Even better, each quilt included an index card marking all of the pertinent information on it... the maker, dates, where it was purchased, or who it was made for, etc. It was very impressive. Especially since a lot of these quilts were award winners from county fairs, or they were made especially for family members or special events.
After about 16 years of quilting, I have so many of my older (traditional style) quilts that the husband threatens that we will need to add on to the house to store them all! But only a few of these have labels. Some of them I made so long ago that I can't even remember the exact year I made them.
Now, I know that there are lots of great books and blog posts written about all the creative ways you can (and should) make labels. And maybe this is what's been holding me back... the pressure to make something good! I'm always ready to move on to the next project and don't want to expend creative energy on a label.
So I decided to pick up on the "quickie" index card idea. Here's the result. These are not pretty! They are not even that well made! But they were quick to make, and because of that, I'm happy! I've made seven so far... New Year's resolution? Finish the other ___???! (that is not a typo! I don't even know how many I need to make!)
I wrote what I wanted the label to say on the computer and printed it out. Then I used a light-box to copy it onto the cotton fabric using Micron archival pens. The archival pens won't bleed or fade, so the idea with these pens is that a generation or two from now, you'll still be able to read them (I hope).
Also, I very quickly stitched out a few of embroidery stitches available on my fancy Bernina. Since I mostly do free motion quilting, I rarely use all the available stitches. So this was kind of a test lab of stitches... again, not all that pretty (and I didn't rip out the mistakes, you'll notice). But the stitches added just a touch of interest.
I'll leave you with a close up of the 1940's vintage quilt that was given to me by my aunt! Because of the care she took to label it, I know who made this quilt, when it was made (1940), when she purchased it (1950s)... and then I added on the label that it was gifted to me in 2013!
And that is a story worth remembering!