So this is what I use my grandmother's basket for -- to hold the elements of a little talk I used to do in the lower grades of our local schools, back when I was starting to be known as 'The Quilt Lady."
I'd bring in a bunch of quilts and talk about them and ask the kids about quilts they might have at home. I'd hand out these pictures of quilt blocks for the kids to identify and color. And I'd tell them a story about Rachel, a little girl who lived in our county about a hundred years ago -- a little girl who wanted to make a quilt for her doll, Grace Greenwood.
I'd show them how Rachel traced around templates and cut out her quilt pieces and sewed them together by hand.
And I'd show them Rachel's doll and the quilt Rachel made with scraps from her mother and sister's sewing (left unfinished on one edge to show its construction.) By the way, those are my grandmother's sewing scissors in the picture.
But what was the original use of the basket? I hear someone asking.
Well, I believe it was used to hold feathers -- feathers plucked from butchered chicken/ducks/geese and used to fill pillows and bed ticks.
Here's a LINK to a Shaker feather basket that looks very similar.(Scroll down to number 219.)
LV - January 2012
5 years ago