In the mid 1960s Grandmother Jackman (Turner-Vance) encouraged me to make a quilt in the Turner design which was in the shape of the letter “T”. She explained that all the Turner girls made these quilts and she was willing to show me how it was done. When Grandma was young, the Turner girls all learned how to stitch an exact seam with tiny stitches. By the time a girl had sewn the Turner T quilt, she would be an excellent quilter and an accomplished young lady.
I had never visited much with Turner relatives and thought of myself as a Vance, and would gladly have made a Vance quilt if there had been such a thing, but I was reluctant to make a quilt honoring my connection to Turners. I knew that Grandma’s maiden name was Turner but to me she was old and her connection to her birth family was long in the past. Today, I feel nostalgic and wish that I had at least made one square in the Turner design.
Grandma taught me to quilt, and I made a fan pattern quilt, but like every new generation, artists and craftspeople interpret designs differently. I purchased material for my quilt for a color scheme that I wanted, and I did not cut out the pieces from scrap fabric. Grandma lived during the Depression and she used only leftover sewing scraps so she was annoyed that I had broken with tradition. We are all different and I made my quilt in my own way.
Grandma did not have a Turner quilt to show me but a cousin located a pattern for me on the internet called Twenty Ts Block, which is probably the same as the Turner Ts.
Family quilt patterns are one of the links that tie us to the past and I am glad that this pattern still exists.
Life is a Patchwork Quilt of Treasured Memories.