I was sorting out my linen cupboard and refound this amazing piece of history. It was the crazy patchwork bed cover given to me by my husband's grandmother as a wedding present. I sat back and let the memories flow through me. I remember feeling awed at the very beauty of it, and thinking how very blessed I am at having married into a family where there was so much love for its members, I remember Granny telling me how some of the pieces were bits she had saved for over 50 years, I remember Viveck recognising a few bits from old school pyjamas of his! So you can see why I use it ever so sparingly. It is so very precious. I have used it again after a very long time and felt I would like to share the story with all my needlework friends.
This was my first introduction to a crazy patchwork quilt. Granny was in her 80s when we got married 35 years ago and had made this for us even though her hands were crippled with arthritis. She said the making of quilts and doing the most amazing cross stitch embroidery was something she had learnt from her mother, an Englishwoman. She made the quilts in the form of bed covers, using her old saris as lining. None of the fabric she used was new but were from scraps she had saved while sewing clothes, or from garments that had got too small, or old curtains etc. I remember her telling me that the brown fabric was new as someone had presented her with it. I have had to replace a couple of the patches, as the fabric got torn. Each piece was first tacked on to a background fabric (in our quilt this is an old sari) and then finally sewed with tiny herringbone stitches. She had seen 2 world wars and hence saving, making do with almost nothing and not wasting was part of her DNA I think. I learnt so much from her about making the best of what we had, be it with food or clothes or anything really. She recycling everything and made such wonderful use of things!!! She was also a terrific knitter and hence all of us, including my children always had hand knitted garments. I learnt to undo old sweaters, wash the wool recharge it with glycerin and use it again to make something different! She always maintained we were a wasteful generation and had been spoilt as we got too much too easily!!! I wonder what Gran would have said if she were alive today!