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Just the Way Grandma Taught me



I was very young when my grandma let me sew with her. I was always playing in her button box anyway, so it was probably inevitable. Grandma did all kinds of fancy work. She crocheted ruffled doilies and bedspreads, she embroidered sheets and pillowcases, she hooked rugs and she made quilts. Granddad cut her templates out of tin. She taught me to make tiny stitches in straight lines. She, and my mom, showed me how to embroider and make doll clothes. And naturally, my dolls needed quilts. I can’t sew anything without thinking of my mom and my grandma.

Over the years, many moves, many children, I have fond memories of women who have been part of my life, women I met with to sew and knit and quilt. I’ve worked on group quilts that were raffled for charities, and I’ve created very personal quilts. I’ve made some other fun things, wall hangings, doll quilts, jackets, pillow tops, all quilted just the way Grandma taught me.

I don’t have any of my grandma’s quilts. But I did find the raggedy ruin of my Sunbonnet Baby crib quilt that she made for me when I was a baby. It was my treasure for many years. I found it in my mom’s cedar chest; I brought it home. Don’t be horrified when I tell you that I cut it up. There were a few “good” sunbonnets that I cut out and had framed to hang in the bunk room where my grandchildren visit. I tell them, your great-great grandma made these for us.


My next quilt, which I hope I can tackle this winter, is a valor quilt. I purchased everything last January with every intention. I haven’t started it yet. Starting is the hardest part for me. I don’t enjoy the math and the cutting. I love to quilt.


Deanna Klingel FR6About the Author:

Quilter/author Deanna Klingel has loved quilts since she was tucked into her crib under the Sunbonnet baby quilt her grandma made for her. Her first quilts she made for her dolls. The love, the skill and the complexity grew up with her. Even as a girl she took her work seriously, quilting, sewing, knitting and writing. Deanna writes primarily historical fiction for young audiences, but also has Pre K picture books and teen novels. You can find her website at booksbydeanna.com. She also has an author page on facebook.