Sewn with love

By Staff
It took 50 years but mom finally finishes special quilt
Special to the Enquirer
A mother recently presented her daughter with a special gift - a quilt she had started while she was pregnant some 50 years ago. The quilt’s journey made for an interesting tale and one daughter Debora Gamble of Hartselle wanted to share. She received the following letter from her mother, Joie Kresser of Cincinnati, Ohio:
Your dad and I were living with his parents. He worked the second shift at GE and I would get lonesome in the evenings after he had gone. I decided to do a quilt and found a pattern for the birds and flowers for each state to embroidery. I was excited, thinking I would have it done that year.
It was not to be! Somewhere along the way I put it away for a while. Then you came along. We were so excited we spent all of our time adoring and caring for you.
In the meantime we would move here and there (lose the pattern) and lose the pieces I had already done but the quilt was never far from my heart or my mind.
Every year I would think, “OK, maybe for Deb’s Christmas or birthday…”
Through the years they changed some of the state birds and flowers. Then they had the nerve to add two states to the Union. Did I have those patterns? No!
Well, in 2006, I was determined to finish this project. I started looking for the patterns once again; called quilt shops all over the country to no avail.
Finally, I found a coloring book with all the state birds and flowers in it. Lee put them on the computer and we got the right size. He then transferred those for me to the material. I got to work!
I had a definite goal in mind, trying to focus and stay focused and with attention deficit disorder, that’s not easy! But this was for my baby girl. Had I been making it for me, I would have thrown it out years ago.
Some of my sisters wanted to help me but I wanted to do all the embroidery work myself with every stitch a labor of love.
Finally, in November 2006 I finished all the squares - now the problem. I knew I needed someone to put it all together and do the quilting part. I called everyone I knew and no one knew how to quilt it.
One night at a church social, it came to me to stand and ask “does anyone here quilt?”
Two rows back, a girl in my class, Cindy Cornell, said she did and would be happy to do it.
I know God put in my mind to ask that question.
She asked me when I needed it done and I said “the week of Jan. 20.” I could not believe when she said “no problem.”
Now I have another problem. I have two more children. Quilts for them? Not! Doug and Jason will get nice store-bought blankets.
Enjoy the quilt. I think it is beautiful but most of all it’s a labor of love, even if it did take 50 years. You’ve got yourself a real antique.”

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