It's 'The Passionate Quilter' by Michele Walker, with wonderful photos by Sandra Lousada.
The book features various patchworkers and quilters, both traditional and modern in their techniques. It's a book I love to leaf through, and inspires me to rummage through the fabric stash and break out the needle and thread. It was also the first time I came across Deirdre Amsden's subtle and stunning 'watercolour' quilts. Love 'em and only wish I could produce something even a 1/10th as good.
Why I'm posting about the book now is that I googled one of the quilters featured, an actress named Lucinda Gane. I loved the description of her hand sewing patchwork during down time on acting jobs, or constructing quilts in her tiny front room, barely big enough to spread out a double bed sized quilt. Sadly she's no longer with us, neither is her husband who's mentioned as helping to produce his wife's quilt patterns.
A few of the older people featured in the book may also have gone to meet their maker (it was published in 1990). But there they are, still in the photographs and interviews. So in a way they live on, frozen in that moment in time. Selecting their fabric, threading the needle, pushing it through the layers of fabric. I'm sure their quilts live on too, perhaps on a family member's bed or given to friends.
Patchwork often contains memories for us as makers. The dress wore that summer, faded, cut up to make backing material. The tweedy material from a man's jacket, 'upcycled' into a warm winter quilt. I like to think those memories remain in the quilt somehow, even after it's changed hands or the maker's no longer around. Some buildings have a sense of place, a feeling of sorrow or joy about them. Perhaps quilts have something of that too. A spirit of their maker and of the cloth. Is that possible? What do you think?