Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of

I have a consuming habit. A magnetized pull. An irresistible urge. And it got me again today. It's the thrift store. If I know there's one around, I have to see inside. I have to pet the linens (well, only the pretty ones. The vintage stuff, you know. I still avoid the shower curtains and bath mats, ewwww). Have to rummage through a bin or two, because there is most certainly a treasure to be had. Not one I need, but nonetheless...I dream about what I will find next. And it's never what I expect.

I visited a new-to-me shop today. With 6 kiddos in tow. And a stroller. Bad idea to take the stroller. There must have been a convention going on there or something. So many people! And such tiny aisles! I had just about given it up, but then my daughter spotted something (the kids always spot things and call to me, just at the time I am focused on something else. They are thrifters-in-training.) This time it was no false alarm. Lo and behold, there, just brought out by the worker, not even hung up on the rack yet, was the most beautiful antique Dresden quilt, like a dream you don't want to wake up from. Pinch me please. You don't just walk into a store and ask where the Dresden quilts are or if they happen to have any in stock. No sir. This was no Pottery Barn reproduction. Those are nice, but not like this. This one is completely hand-stitched in my favorite 30's feedsack prints. It is that special. It is huge. And it is mine. Oh, and I still have some money left in my pocket. Should I feel guilty about that? Not a bit.

What is it about the Dresden Plate that gets me? I really can't explain it. I have an entire Pinterest board devoted to it. It is charming, classic, just dreamy. Huge or tiny, whole or in pieces, they always catch my eye. I love them. These days we have cute little rulers to help us make them very easily. I have an idea that the person who made this quilt did not use anything but a pair of scissors and needle and thread. And lots of time and love.

 Of course I wonder where in the world this quilt came from. Who made it? For what occasion? Was it made from scraps of homemade clothes? Whom did it keep warm on cold nights? How many babies were rocked to sleep in its warm folds? And the perennial question lingers, "Why did they relegate it to the thrift bin?" I know all these things will be gone someday. Moth and rust corrupt. But in the meantime, these material things sure do bring us a lot of pleasure. And some really good stories.

Thus ends another chapter in the Thrifting Chronicles. But stay tuned. The story will continue with an undoubted twist of excitement, next time...