Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Civil War Era Mourning Quilt
This is a beautiful example of a mourning quilt. The patches are mostly men's clothing, with what may be a Civil War uniform. The geometric simplicity of the pattern is masculine, yet there are sweet needlepoint embellishments scattered throughout.
Mourning (or memory) quilts from back in the day were part remembrance, part necessity - clothing material was scarcer than it is now, and so reuse was almost a given when someone passed away. There weren't exactly Salvation Armies to receive the clothes, and there weren't Gaps and Bed Bath & Beyonds to replenish our closets. Today, with a renewed interest in upcycling, memory quilts are both a way to remember our loved ones as well as find a meaningful reuse for their clothing.