Sunday, December 4, 2011

Nestled all snug in their beds

The Night Before Christmas is a poem which was first published anonymously in 1823.  Both Clement Clark Moore and Henry Livingston, Jr. have been given credit for the writing of this Christmas poem.  My father could remember and recite this cherished poem from memory.

                     'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
                     Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
                     The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
                     In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
                     The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
                     While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.

I come from a family of quilters.  Mothers, Grandmothers, Aunts, cousins all quilted.  Growing up in the Smokey Mountains when the first snows come as early as October brings new meaning to the words "nestled all snug in their beds."  Quilts were necessary for warmth.  There were utilitarian quilts or as my family called them "everyday quilts."  There were also special quilts for weddings and the birth of a baby.  Then there were the Sunday quilts.  The Sunday quilts were the quilts proudly displayed on beds when special guests came to visit.  Great thought, planning and skills went into the making of the "Sunday quilts."  Quilt patterns and designs were studied, scraps of fabric carefully laid out and stitched together and finally the backbreaking hours bent over a quilting frame stitching the layers together.

For Christmas, I use one of my "Sunday quilts" for the guest bed.  This is a very traditional quilt pattern called tumbling blocks.  Tumbling block quilt patterns are interesting because they have a three dimensional look due to the blocks looking like they are tumbling down the quilt.  The basic principle of light, medium, and dark fabrics is essential for the success of the design.

The traditional blocks were hand pieced and quilted using a diamond shape in a repeating pattern.

When I am nestled under this quilt, dreams of sugar plums while waiting for St. Nick come easy.


  1. Your quilt is gorgeous. As are your decorations. I particularly Iove your little figures lined up with the trees. I am looking forward to following your blog. x

  2. What a beautiful quilt! What a lovely thing to inherit--a true treasure.