Well, it’s not exactly a blanket. A comforter, actually. I made it for my son Will’s first “big boy” bed about forty years ago. He loved ladybugs and, in our small town, available fabric was limited to what was stacked in the basement of Sprouse Reitz.
(I bought a lot of flannel fabric there.)
So…back to ladybugs…
There was no ladybug fabric for the new comforter, so I settled on something similar: red apples on a denim-looking background (hey, it was as close to the damn bugs as I could get!!!). This comforter was only 45″ wide because I couldn’t afford to buy double the fabric to make it wider. I backed it with an old green sheet.
Fast forward to six weeks ago, in Texas, as Will and I attempted to clean out the condo’s walk-in closet in preparation for the new flooring.
He dragged out this comforter and I immediately said, “Throw it out.”
That was not what he wanted to hear. “Couldn’t you fix it?”
I spread it out on the floor and saw way too many rips and holes. The beloved “Apple Blanket” had lived a full life and it was time for it to end. I said as much, but Will balked. Obviously he couldn’t shove it into the waiting garbage bag that easily.
“Couldn’t you save some of it?”
“A pillow or something, I don’t know, just anything.”
He is so much like his father.
So I found a small chunk of fabric without holes in it and cut it out. I took off the backing and the batting and the yarn ties that held it together and folded it into my suitcase.
I suppose I can make a small pillow out of it, meaning Will would own the ugliest pillow in Austin. Or I could add fabric around it to make it look like I planned it that way. I don’t know.
But I can’t really complain too much, because the comforter I made in 1972, from flannel from Sprouse Reitz, is still on my bed. It has worn thin in many places, but has yet to rip. Until it does, it stays.
Quilts and comforters are meant to be used. If someone has gifted you a quilt (and it is not a priceless antique or family heirloom) and its creator says to you, “Use it!!”, then do so. The more you wash it and dry it, the better it will get. And if it disintegrates in forty years, that’s okay. Because you had–hopefully–forty years of warmth from it.
Which is a lot of snuggling.
The Apple Blanket did its job, and I guess a piece of it will hang around a while longer.