Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Cozy as an Old Quilt

The quilt my grandma made for me in 1978.

My six year old daughter loves to wrap up in the quilt my grandma made for me, when I was born. It’s a twin bed sized coverlet in the perfect colors of 1978; orange, green, blue and mustard. It’s trimmed in Suzy Sunbonnet style fabric, and has blocks of embroidery that were hand done by my grandma who is turning 89 later this month. After 34 years the quilt is soft, warm, a bit puppy chewed, and the only thing my littlest wants when she is feeling snuggly.

When my best friends and I were all having babies I wanted to give their families something that would last, like the quilt from my grandma. We all managed to have kids at about the same time, so for a brief period of my life I crafted two baby quilts a year, or more.

The crazy quilt from scraps of the baby quilts I have made.
Then one day, about two years ago, I scrapped together all of the bits of leftover fabric into crazy quilt blocks. The blocks sat in a closet through the years it took to create the Mitzy Neuhaus Mystery Series, waiting for me to pull them all together into a blanket. But the time has finally come. The quilt top has been pieced. The batting, back, and top have been basted, and now I get to sit with my needle and thread and quilt it together, one stitch at a time.

Each scrap in the quilt I am making has a story for me, the story of a friend I love, a child who is growing up, and a period of my life dedicated to babies and blanket making.

Quilts are like books that way, layers of story, built together to create something lasting for the pleasure of generations. Quilts bring to mind images of women in a circle, hinting at secrets best left unsaid, warm fires on snowy days, or packages shipped to faraway lands. Quilts, in short are cozy mysteries at your fingertips.

It only makes sense that quilt themed cozy mysteries abound! Here’s a list of some that look fun. (Confession, I haven’t read them all!)

Traci Tyne Hilton is a mom, Sunday School teacher, novelist, and award winning playwright from Portland, Oregon. She is madly working on her next mystery series which has finaled in the Books of Hope Contest at Write Integrity Press and has an impending deadline.

Traci earned a degree in History from
Portland State University and lives in the rainiest part of the Pacific Northwest with her husband the mandolin playing funeral director from Kansas, their two daughters, and their dog, Dr. Watson.

More of Traci's work can be found at


  1. Sweet story. Old quilts are comfortable because of all they've been through and where they've come from. The history behind them makes a quilt even more valuable. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thank you. : ) I feel very blessed because my daughters and Grandmother know and love each other. When she is gone, we will all still have the quilt to remember her by.

  2. I agree - quilts are special. I only have one from my mom, but I treasure it.

    ~Nancy Jill