Handmade quilts are an American tradition that is alive and well. Each quilt carries a piece of family and personal history sewn into it, and most become heirlooms to be passed on down the generations. Quilting is an active tradition, with millions of quilters nationwide putting together original and creative designs. One of the best ways to preserve your family’s history and memory is a custom-designed memory quilt. A memory quilt is also a wonderful gift for a family member because of the strong emotional associations that each square carries.
An American tradition
Quilting is an American tradition but the origins of the craft can be traced back to ancient Egypt and China, as long ago as 3400 BCE. The oldest quilt still existing today is the Tristan Quilt. It was made some time between the years 1360 to 1400. The basic design of a quilt is very simple: three layers are sewn together. These are the warm middle layer called the batting, along with the top and backing that keep it from slipping and bunching up.
American quilts date back to the colonial period, when women of all classes would produce their own household linens and necessities. They lived in a time when household items of practical usage could also be beautiful, and handmade quilts still serve both purposes. There are some traditional designs and patterns that quilt makers still follow. Five types of stitches are used in American handmade quilts. These are outline, satin stitch, lazy daisy stitch, cross stitch and French knots. As many as 81% of quilters today follow traditional styles of patterns and stitches.
The quilting tradition today
The tradition of quilting is alive and well, and there were as many as 21 million quilters in the U.S. as of 2014. About 38% of quilters specialize in art quilting, and 35% use modern designs. Exchanging and giving away squares is another tradition associated with the craft that many quilters still practice. The squares used give each quilt its own character and charm, which is why designs are so significant.
Quilt squares can be inspired by tradition, or they can be new and unique. Memory quilts are made with squares from clothing and fabrics that have a special meaning for the owner. These could be squares from cherished baby and childhood clothing, old furnishings like curtains, and more. Custom quilts give this traditional craft a personal appeal, and become family heirlooms that will be used and handed down with love and pride.
Memory quilts preserve family history
In the quilt-making tradition, memory quilts occupy a special place. Memory quilts makers generally use squares from the owner’s clothing or clothing that belonged to family members or close friends. These could be patches of cloth from christening and materiality robes, sports jerseys, pjs and night clothes, old flannels shirts, jeans and such precious remnants. A custom t-shirt quilt could trace your kid’s entire journey through school and would make a great wedding gift.
Professional quilters can design custom memory quilts to display and commemorate cars, people, family, pets, events and much more. Memory quilt patterns literally stitch together special moments from the life of an individual or family, giving them a special appeal. Memory quilts carry a strong emotional tie, making them a suitable gift for family members. Like other handmade quilts, they become family heirlooms that will be treasured and passed on down the generations.
Handmade quilts represent a tradition that is still flourishing. They combine beauty with practical usage, making them unique and suitable gifts for almost any occasion. Memory quilts have a special emotional association with family and individual history, making them heirlooms that will be used and cherished for a long time.