Audio Recordings "I've done a lot of the crazy quilts."
About this Item
- "I've done a lot of the crazy quilts."
- Contributor Names
- Johnson, Geraldine Niva, 1940- (Interviewer)
- Patton, Ila, 1905-2001 (Interviewee)
- Patton, Ila, 1905-2001 (Creator)
- Created / Published
- Galax, Virginia
- Subject Headings
- - Quilting
- - Quilt patterns
- - Quilts
- - quilt piecing
- - patchwork quilts
- - aesthetics
- - crazy quilts
- - leaf quilts
- - poplar leaf quilts
- - sawtooth quilts
- - string quilts
- - Ethnography
- - Interviews
- - United States -- Virginia -- Galax
- - Geraldine Johnson described Ila Patton's quilts as "not fancy, but very interesting and well made." They include utility crazy and strip quilts, as well as a recent Cathedral Window, which is a novelty construction popular in the 1970s. The variety of Mrs. Patton's quilts, her recollections of learning to quilt from her grandmother, and her primary interest in making quilts for family rather than to sell are some of the key elements brought out in this "very useful and informative" interview.
- - Transcription: GJ: What kinds of quilting patterns and things do you remember your grandmother liking? / IP: Well, I can't hardly think what she did have. I believe she had a sawtooth pattern they called it. And Poplar Leaf. Can't think. Crazy quilts, they called them, they pieced them every which way, you know. They was pretty. / GJ: Did they do a lot of those? / IP: Yeah, done a whole lot of the crazy done most, that's the most I've pieced, is mine just crazy-like, crazy pieced. / GJ: Is that like a strip quilt? / IP: Well, you use little strips. You'd cut 'em, you'd sew 'em in strips, about, some would be five- and six-inch strips, you know, on a strip of cloth? And then you'd take these narrow strips and just piece 'em, you know, you could change them strips and put in different colors and it made 'em awful pretty. When you put blue and red and then the flowered pieces all in amongst 'em. They was pretty. And then you would sew them strips all together. And then put your cotton in 'em and then the lining, and tack 'em or quilt 'em either one. You could quilt 'em in fans, or you could just quilt 'em in rows, either way you want. Some would quilt 'em pretty close and some wouldn't be quite so close. The closer you quilted 'em the longer they'd last. And the shorter the stitch you'd take the prettier they was. / GJ: Is that right? / IP: Yeah. You want to make a short stitch, and that made 'em pretty. And then you'd turn the hems down and whip them around, and if you wouldn't let that thread show that made it a heap prettier too, the nicer you fixed your stitch. / GJ: You hemming it around the / IP: Yeah, hemming the quilt around the bottom, yeah. The ends and the sides. / GJ: When you were stripping them, did you used to sew your pieces of cloth to like a piece of paper or anything? / IP: Sometimes I would, I'd take strips of paper and piece the pieces on 'em and then tear these, this paper off. And then, you know, just sew it all up in a top, all together, and then put it together, you know, put the wadding, we called it, and the lining. And then tacked it. You'd get that paper all off. You could use paper instead of cloth, to piece on, you know, for the little strips. Cut your long strips to piece on? And, uh, we used to use old catalogs. It was paper, you know the sheets out of it was thin? And it wasn't as rotten as the thicker paper would be. Take the leaves out of, well, we called it Roebuck catalog. Ward's, we'd just tear them pages out and just piece 'em and then sew them together. / GJ: So you'd piece the quilt on say a page from the Roebuck catalog / IP: Yeah, / GJ: And then when you got a nice square about the size of a page, you'd tear that page away. And then sew all those blocks together. / IP: Yeah, sew 'em all together. Yeah. That's the way you done it.
- - For rights information please contact the Folklife Reading Room at http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.afc/folklife.contact
- Sound tape reel : 7 in.
- Call Number/Physical Location
- AFC 1982/009: BR8-GJ-R90
- Source Collection
- Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection (AFC 1982/009)
- American Folklife Center
- Online Format
ContributorsJohnson, Geraldine Niva
Poplar Leaf Quilts
Rights assessment is your responsibility.
The Library of Congress is not aware of any U.S. copyright protection (see Title 17, U.S.C.) or any other restrictions in the material in this collection, except as noted below. Users should keep in mind that the Library of Congress is providing access to these materials strictly for educational and research purposes. The written permission of the copyright owners and/or other holders of rights (such as publicity and/or privacy rights) is required for distribution, reproduction, or other use of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use or other statutory exemptions. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item and securing any necessary permissions ultimately rests with persons desiring to use the item. See our Legal Notices and Privacy and Publicity Rights for additional information and restrictions.
The American Folklife Center and the professional fieldworkers who carry out these projects feel a strong ethical responsibility to the people they have visited and who have consented to have their lives documented for the historical record. The Center asks that researchers approach the materials in this collection with respect for the culture and sensibilities of the people whose lives, ideas, and creativity are documented here. Researchers are also reminded that privacy and publicity rights may pertain to certain uses of this material.
This collection includes materials from the "All-American Quilt Contest" sponsored by Coming Home, a division of Lands' End and Good Housekeeping. The quilt contest winning entries from 1992 to 1996 are displayed with the permission of Coming Home which retains its rights.
Researchers or others who would like to make further use of these collection materials should contact the Folklife Reading Room for assistance.
Please cite the source collection title, collection number, and repository, for example:
Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project collection, 1977-1981 (AFC 1982/009), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Lands' End all-American quilt collection, 1992-1997 (AFC 1997/011), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
More about Copyright and other Restrictions
For guidance about compiling full citations consult Citing Primary Sources.
Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.
Chicago citation style:
Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Ila Patton, and Ila Patton. "I've done a lot of the crazy quilts.". Galax, Virginia, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/qlt000011/. (Accessed October 23, 2016.)
APA citation style:
Johnson, G. N., Patton, I. & Patton, I. (1978) "I've done a lot of the crazy quilts.". Galax, Virginia. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/qlt000011/.
MLA citation style:
Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Ila Patton, and Ila Patton. "I've done a lot of the crazy quilts.". Galax, Virginia, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <https://www.loc.gov/item/qlt000011/>.