Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Hexagonal Star Quilt

So many times when I have looked at a vintage quilt without a label, I have wondered what story it would tell if the quilt could talk.
That is why it feels like such a precious possession to know of quilts that stay within a family, and are handed down complete with stories, from generation to generation.

Hexagonal Star owned by Beverly Brower
Hand pieced and hand quilted by her grandmother in the 1950's.
Shown at the 7th Annual Art of Quilting Show, Gilbert Museum, AZ.

Beverly shared "This quilt my grandmother made and used on her bed for many years. She purchased the fabrics from old Woolworth stores. I recall as a young child riding with Grandma on the bus when we went downtown to shop at Woolworth's. While there, she would usually treat me to a coke."
What happy memories!

I was not as familiar with the term Hexagonal Star in quilting.
It's clear to see the hexagon in each center, and also the large hexagon in white background fabric that forms around each 6 points of the star.
In researching the term, I discovered that there is great symbolism in the Hexagonal Star.
"The star is a combination of 2 triangles, one is pointing upward and the other is pointing downward. It is the symbol of union by man and God. The upward triangle represents man, the downward triangle represents God. This is the symbol of oneness of God and Man."
Do you think Beverly's grandmother might have selected this design for it's symbolic meaning?
Have you ever made a quilt to represent a personal belief?

On a tier above Hexagonal Star, hung another vintage star quilt:
Eight Points Star
Shown by Martha Bauder
Made by her great-grandmother Mrs. Conrad Neeb
(from the era when women were identified by their husband's name)

"Around the turn of the 20th Century, my great-grandmother came into possession of a treadle sewing machine. She used it to make several quilts. My mother said that when she was a young girl she saw this quilts and others on beds in her grandmother's house. The quilt was handed down to my grandmother, who gave it to my mother, who gave it to me in the mid-1990's.

You can see that a combination of hand quilting and machine stitching was used to complete the quilt.

I loved seeing the writing that still appears in various background fabrics

Eight Points Star, along with it's story, has held prominence through 4 generations.
What a heritage for this family!
Hopefully it will continue to be passed down and appreciated to the next generation, and the ones that follow.


Doniene said...

Nedra, just absolutely wonderful!! I love star quilts and these two are truly precious possessions! I'm glad the family loves them!! It is sad to see a quilt that the family didn't value!! I have made one quilt with significance - a brand quilt for my husband!

Thanks for sharing!

Abby and Stephanie said...

Now that we are quilters of the modern age of blogging our husbands are now taking on our name. Mr. Cactus and Mr. Creations! That is a wonderful heirloom. I love the flour sack print showing on the background.

Cardygirl said...

What a beautiful post...I love the stars and the stories!

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

so many nice old quilts, these look like they are cared for, I hate it when I see an old quilt tossed over stuff in the back for a pickup for moving things with ropes tied down over it.

Janet said...

I love the stories with the quilts and the quilts themselves are wonderful.

Needled Mom said...

I just love the Hexagonal Star pattern. It should be a good warning to us that we should always label our quilts.

Nanette Merrill said...

Lovely lovely quilts. THe fabrics are amazing and the handwork incredible. Sew impressive. Love these.

Bec said...

I love your grandmother's quilts. I have a quilt top that my great grandmother piece before I was born. I'm 60 years old. I think it is called Orange Peel or Joseph's coat...not sure. It's very colorful. We are blessed to have such treasures.
I particularly like your grandmother's Hexagonal Star quilt. Do you know where I could find the pattern?