My maternal grandparents and their four daughters lived overseas from 1954 to 1972 because my grandfather worked for USAID, teaching people how to be better farmers. When they returned to the US permanently, my granny wanted to document their travels by creating a quilt. Her original intent was to make 36 blocks, but she only ended up with 14. Growing up, I knew about the blocks, but never heard much after a few years. As an adult with quilting skills, I offered to complete the quilt a few times. A couple years ago, Granny gave me a box with drawings, graph paper, coloring books, maps, and all of her ideas penciled out. It seemed a bit overwhelming and I finally decided to just go with the blocks that were complete.
Each block is either a country where they lived with its flag or a scene or words showing other interests or places visited. For instance, there is a block with Big Ben and another of the Eiffel Tower, yet these were visits.
Granny is turning 90 this year, and this quilt will be given to her at her party in August. I don't have a large design wall, so it's draped over my sofa. My LQS helped me select the background, which picks up many of the blocks' colors.
This is my favorite block, showing a pink stucco house in Afghanistan with a croquet set in the front yard and a bike leaning near the steps. My granny is sure this house has been destroyed by now.
Passports and certificate of immunization with many cities' names embroidered.
The Taj Mahal, created in satin and lace.
The label showing each country where they lived. Granny has many fond memories of her life in these countries and I know she'll love the quilt.