This year has caused many to question where we are headed. We are in the midst of huge world challenges with what appears to be a hodgepodge of issues. Is our world a crazy quilt? Let’s take a look at what is called a crazy quilt.
This particular style of quilt was first made during the Victorian era in the late 1800’s. Its name was derived from a seeming lack of a constructed pattern. Until I really studied the layout of the fabrics, I assumed it to be entirely random. However, there is a framework. In searching for continuous straight lines, I saw a grid of large squares. Then, within each square there are four adjoined kite-like shapes positioned to resemble the four cardinal directions on a compass. The fact that each piece is created from other smaller sections disguises much of the framework.
A family history…
These quilts were a clever way to utilize scraps from other sewing. This type of project was popular during hard times or simply in following the philosophy of waste not, want not. My maternal grandmother made this one roughly a half century ago. It contains remnants of cloth from three generations! This is a history of my grandmother’s dresses and aprons and my mother’s dresses and blouses as well as little dresses my sister and I wore.
In looking at each individual piece of fabric, I see beauty and a sense of design and pattern. There may be fabric in another square that coordinates more closely in its inherent characteristics than with the adjoining pieces. However, all are lovely in their own way, fitting neatly against one another as puzzle pieces.
As this quilt has some age to it, it is quite fragile. You may even notice one particular section with the white lining showing. The lighter cloth beneath appears as the darker colored cloth on top is disintegrating.
It seems that this year has clearly polarized many factions within the world having to do with economics, health, race relations, science, diversity, politics, etc. It certainly does have the feel and appearance of a crazy quilt.
Learning from the crazy quilt…
Let us continue to ponder the makings of this quilt. Could we find by studying a crazy quilt that perhaps our world isn’t such a crazy quilt? Maybe if we look hard enough at our world, we can find our cardinal points of direction once again. We can build on our history and still appreciate individual differences of beauty. Those things that are antiquated may fade away and yet inspire our future. We can intelligently utilize our world resources. Perhaps we can all nip a few excess corners to fit as a puzzle of oneness. Do you know what the secret is to moving forward? It is love, simply love, just as the love of my grandmother in sewing this quilt, one stitch at a time.