Audio Recording "I’d use different colors of thread."

About this Item

"I’d use different colors of thread."
Contributor Names
Johnson, Geraldine Niva, 1940- (Interviewer)
Patton, Ila, 1905-2001 (Interviewee)
Patton, Ila, 1905-2001 (Creator)
Created / Published
Galax, Virginia
Subject Headings
-  thread
-  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 kind of thread did you use, then, to do the quilting? / IP: Well, I had to get the quilting thread. You had to buy it. / GJ: And what color would you use? / IP: Well, I'd use, I'd get different colors. In, now that was in tacking. In quilting, I'd usually most of the time. Well I'd get different colors. Part of the time I'd use white. And sometimes it would be different colors. / GJ: How would you determine what you were going to use, what colors you would use? / IP: Well, I'd just get the colors that kind of matched the tops or the linings. / GJ: How do you mean, matched? / IP: Well, it was just, you know, like you was a-making a dress, and you'd have to get the color of thread to match your material, the color. That's the way I'd do the quilts, a lot of the time. / GJ: So you'd try to match the color of the top or the color of the lining? / IP: Well, sometimes I'd just match the color of the lining, and then sometimes I'd match the top. You couldn't hardly match the top, you had too many different colors. You'd about have to match the lining. / GJ: One of those is quilted with red thread. / IP: Yeah. / GJ: So how did you determine that you'd use red there. / IP: Well, I just happened, I guess, to have it and just used it. [laughter] Used what I had.
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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

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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

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Chicago citation style:

Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Ila Patton, and Ila Patton. "I'd use different colors of thread.". Galax, Virginia, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, (Accessed July 20, 2017.)

APA citation style:

Johnson, G. N., Patton, I. & Patton, I. (1978) "I'd use different colors of thread.". Galax, Virginia. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Ila Patton, and Ila Patton. "I'd use different colors of thread.". Galax, Virginia, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.