Madge O’Callaghan offered a session on May 23.

Madge O’Callaghan lead this group from Ireland!


Afternoon of Quilting

by Nancy Day

I have this problem of just not being able to follow the damn quilt pattern. I like to do my own thing too much. Or, sometimes I think I have a much better idea. At times I can’t see cutting and stitching back together so many 2 ½” squares of fabric when 6 ½” will do, particularly if the fabric is a daring print, such as overly large fish, or cowboys on horseback. Less sewing, gorgeous nonetheless.

The pain in my right thumb often bosses me around when I’m sewing, saying to my brain, “I think she needs a cup of tea”. 

“Let’s make it a pot”, says my stiff right shoulder.

I’m not stupid, one doesn’t really need a pattern to make a quilt. Most of the women from the 1800’s didn’t have access to quilting patterns, let alone fancy things like high-end fabric shops or even lightbulbs.

When I break for tea, the women from the olden days join me around the kitchen table, and we all have a cup. They smile and nod as I moan about my aches and pains. They politely refrain from reminding me what a privileged and spoilt sort of person I am.

“You don’t mind if I have a wee lie-down on the couch do you?” I suggest, placing the dirty mugs in the dishwasher. They look away, smiling, biting their lips. They can’t imagine such a thing. They had farm chores, and ten kids to raise.

The olden women seem to have taken a liking to me though. Daringly, I ask if they want to tidy up my sewing room while I snooze. They begin to fade away, just as I pull the lap quilt over my legs, and I nod off. That damn room will be just as messy when I wake up.

Thank you for joining us to Write Around the World!

For the rest of the summer, watch our blog! We are sharing writing from AWA’s yearly marathon fundraiser, which happened this year all-online throughout the month of May.

We offer this series in appreciation for the incredible community of writers and workshop leaders that sustain us. If you’re inspired and would like to be part of the fundraiser, please donate!

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