Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Each stitch tells a story

The Queensland Art Gallery is currently curating an exhibition of quilts dating between 1700 and 1945. Visiting this exhibition is bound to leave you with lasting memories. Each quilt brings with it a story, each stitch lovingly crafted, each memory woven within. 

The quilt that spoke to me long after leaving the gallery's halls was the Changi Quilt. Hand crafted by 20 young Girl Guides, between the ages of eight and 16 years, it was secretly assembled with courage and determination as a birthday gift for their leader, Elizabeth Ennis. Huddled away in a corner of the prison's exercise yard, with another girl on watch, the girls brought together any scraps of precious fabric and thread that they could find, often recycling the very clothes they stood in.

Stitching their names into the quilt brings with it a real sense of story. A story that will remain with you long after these precious quilts return to the V&A Museum in London.

Evelyn Harris, Changi Quilt, 1943

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