Audio Recording "Group quilting is real good if you could get enough interested."

About this Item

"Group quilting is real good if you could get enough interested."
Contributor Names
Johnson, Geraldine Niva, 1940- (Interviewer)
Todd, Zenna, 1916-2012 (Interviewee)
Todd, Zenna, 1916-2012 (Creator)
Created / Published
Ennice, North Carolina
Subject Headings
-  Quilting
-  quilting bees
-  quilting groups
-  Ethnography
-  Interviews
-  United States -- North Carolina -- Ennice
-  Mrs. Todd started making quilts for her family to use when she was 25. She teaches quiltmaking and makes quilts to sell through a local shop to supplement her income. Geraldine Johnson described her as "a bubbly, enthusiastic person who would be a natural à interpreter of Blue Ridge quilts." This interview includes good information on the economics and practice of making quilts to sell, criteria for selection of materials to use in quilts, and how quiltmaking has changed over time.
-  Transcription: GJ: Did you ever quilt with a group of people? / ZT: The only group that we quilted with is when we had our quilting up here. Well, we was supposed to have 15 in the class but a lot of times, maybe that, they wouldn't that many quilt. They'd just watch. Then they wanted us to go to Union Grove to a fiddlers' convention, and we quilted down there, and we quilted with several different women. They was from Wilkes, and Ashe, Allegheny. I think one of them pictures over there showed maybe when we was at Union Grove. They hanged the quilt from the ceiling, and they had a Double Wedding Ring, and we all, different ones of us, maybe there'd be three or four quilt at one time, and then maybe some would quit and then others would sit down. And a lot of people would come in and want to make pictures, you know, and want to see us do it, that hadn't ever seen nothing like that a-going on. And, it was, it was very interesting. I went a couple of days. Well, I would think that group quilting is real good if you could get enough interested. They's, they's a lot of people that would like to do that if they had a building to quilt in. But they's so many people that doesn't have a place to quilt, and they'll just put it up in their home, you know, and it doesn't take too much room for one person. But if you was going to have, say, four or five to come in and help you quilt, you'd have to have a pretty good space to do it in. Oh, I'd love to have a group of women that could quilt real good, but, you know what? Believe it or not, no two people don't quilt alike. No, no two people don't quilt alike. And you can tell when the new one comes in and when, you can look at your quilt when you get it through and tell. No, they don't no two quilt alike. And the, just the way they, their stitches, and everything. You wouldn't think they'd be that much difference in it, but they are. / GJ: Is it fun to quilt with a group? / ZT: Oh, yeah, I just love to do that. We had the most fun! [laughter] Well, we'd, we'd talk and laugh and sometimes we'd make mistakes, one of us would, you know, and the others would catch it. And we'd bring our food, you know, we'd have, maybe we'd, say, well, we'll all get together tomorrow, I'll bring so-and-so to eat. And this one'll bring something else. And we'd all eat together. We enjoyed it! We had a good time. Yeah But most of the time it's elderly people. I think the younger generation needs to get in on it, and learn how, let somebody teach 'em. And learn how to do things like that.
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Sound tape reel : 7 in.
Call Number/Physical Location
AFC 1982/009: BR8-GJ-R102
Source Collection
Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection (AFC 1982/009)
American Folklife Center
Online Format

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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.

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Credit line

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

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Zenna Todd, and Zenna Todd. "Group quilting is real good if you could get enough interested.". Ennice, North Carolina, 1978. Audio.

APA citation style:

Johnson, G. N., Todd, Z. & Todd, Z. (1978) "Group quilting is real good if you could get enough interested.". Ennice, North Carolina. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Johnson, Geraldine Niva, Zenna Todd, and Zenna Todd. "Group quilting is real good if you could get enough interested.". Ennice, North Carolina, 1978. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.