When I started quilting, I would go to quilt shows and marvel at all the quilts on display. One thing I noticed was the naming of the quilts. Some were very obvious while others clearly meant something only to the artist. So today I want to know, do you name your quilts?
By this time I had a few quilts of my own under my belt and never once considered naming them. It just seemed so pretentious. I mean, who did I think I was?! I’ve learned since then that there are three important reasons to name your quilts.
It’s Easier to Describe Them
Rather than continuing to call a quilt “the one I made for Emily’s baby… you know, Emily who I worked with in Ohio,” I went with “Kaylee’s Kaleidoscope.” Because it was for Kaylee. And the pattern and fabric reminded me of a kaleidoscope. Though I admit my first quilt is still referred to as “the janky blue and yellow one I won’t sign my name to.”
As much as we like to think we’ll be around forever, there will come a time when someone will study our quilts and want to know their history. When I name a quilt, I put my custom label on it and write in the quilt’s name and the date I finished it. Your quilt can tell its story long after you are gone.
Bonus: I sew my label into the quilt backing, so someone would have to really do some damage to the quilt if they wanted to remove the label.
Because You are an Artist
Otherwise known as, “you’re good enough, you’re smart enough, and gosh darn it people like you.” Nothing breaks my heart more than seeing a quilter pour their heart into a quilt only to tear it apart at show and tell. When I see this happen, I openly challenge the artist to tell one thing that makes their quilt perfect. Even if it’s only the love they feel for the recipient, every quilt is perfect and should be honored with a name.
This third reason is why I name my quilts. I don’t care who thinks I’m being pretentious for doing it. My quilts’ names range from the obvious to the inspired to the plain silly.
I encourage you to name your quilts. They – and you – deserve it!
I wholeheartedly agree with all your points. Naming a quilt and giving a little bit of information about who made it, when and where is such a lovely way of making it personal and ‘real’.
For all the time we spend on our quilts, it’s really the least we can do for them!!