The Warm Crazy Quilt
by Dayle Sillerud
The Warm Crazy Quilt at a "Bed Turning" Event
The quilt had to be warm -- warm enough to keep the cold away for the newlyweds in North Dakota. My mother grew up in Iowa and was married to a ND farmer in November of 1947. My grandmother made the crazy quilt for them at that time.
It is not pretty, but it is heavy and thick. To form the four blocks She appliquéd wool and cotton scraps onto big backing pieces that appear to be feedsacks. Fancy stitches were embroidered in yarn over the seams in the tradition of the more refined Victorian crazy quilts. There is no batting, and the backing is cotton flannel. The resulting 72x90 inch quilt weighs 9 pounds.
The crazy quilt was welcome in my parents' first home -- an uninsulated apartment heated by an oil stove. The warmth of the quilt came from its heavy construction, but the warmth of my grandmother's love was felt every time members of my family used it throughout the years.
There are many online sites with information about the heritage of quilting in America. Some are excellent, containing well-researched scholarly information, such as The International Quilt Study and Museum at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln.
Others, such as Block Central's Quilt Directory contain links to many fine sites that pertain not only to the history of quilts, but to other elements of quilting as well.