White coral bells

Saturday I dug up some lilies of the valley for my sister, happy as anything to be working among their fragrant flowers.  Today was too cold to work outside. It was basement vacuuming and garage sorting for me. And some sewing.

Somewhere along the line, the decision was made to name all the congregants who were in the Emanual AME church the night of the mass killing. Liz Ackert (“I’m Going to Texas“) stitched these names and created the lovely hands. I struggled with placement when they were white rectangles. But once I decided to reverse appliqué them with some reproduction Civil War fabric, they found their spots. The hearts were too big. Circles seemed just right. The only label left is the one naming the ten makers. The one saying these blocks were stitched with love, in grief and outrage and with hopes for peace.

15 thoughts on “White coral bells

  1. Nancy

    Oh, Dee…this is all so amazing. What lovely work you and Liz and all the others have done. Thank you for forging forward to complete this labor of love. xo Nancy

    Reply
    1. deemallon Post author

      Have you seen, by any chance, the large mural in Charleston dedicated to Cynthia Hurd (your block’s honoree)? You would love it, I think. Also, I unpicked her name from the front of your block because all the other names were stitched on the backs. I thought the front needed all the names or none. Without the off-white script embroidered in the red heart that you appliqued, something looks a little missing, but it was a trade-off I was willing to make in the interests of considering the whole. I hope you don’t mind too much.

      Reply
      1. Nancy

        No, I hadn’t seen it…it is beautiful and full of color, of life! Thank you for letting me know. No, I don’t mind too much 🙂 or at all…when you collaborate with others, there must be room for everyone’s ideas and compromise and…etc. These are all good things, for the greater good, if that makes sense. I’m off to work, so not having time to choose words carefully. It is all fine, I can’t wait to see it all done!!

        Reply
  2. Liz A

    I love what you did with the label for Ethel Lance. The details and symbolism throughout this quilt are moving beyond words to tell (though I do very much look forward to reading the words that will accompany it when it journeys to Charleston).

    Reply
    1. deemallon Post author

      The back of the quilt will list our names and places of origin with a simple dedication. The cover letter will explain some of the thoughts and feelings of the makers, but I don’t want to over do. If people are interested, I figure they can go to my blog and follow the trail of links. Hope to send cover letter to you and others in the next couple of days for comments. My plan still is to post the quilt by Friday.

      Reply
    2. deemallon Post author

      I hope you approve of how I attached the last two of your labels – these beautiful hands. It was tricky finding a place for them, in part because I so love the exposed stitches on the backs of the blocks. Don’t know if you noticed, but I moved your indigo Pinckney label to Dana’s block, centering it under the white linen “remember”. I will put the overall dedication on the back of the church block.

      Reply
  3. Michelle in NYC

    Hey….when I was a girl, we used to sing this round “White coral bells upon a slender stalk-Lilies of the valley deck my garden walk-Oh, don’t you wish that you could hear them ring?-That will happen only when the fairies sing.”

    Reply
  4. ravenandsparrow

    The quilt back is really coming together well. I can hardly wait to see it finished. Thank you again Dee.

    Reply
    1. deemallon Post author

      I should’ve mentioned on that post that that view is the back… it occurred to me that some people won’t know.

      Reply
    1. deemallon Post author

      They may have received it by now. This coming Monday is Memorial Day in the states. A lot of people don’t know that the holiday was created by African Americans in Charleston.

      Reply

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