Final Stage: ‘All in the Family’ or ‘Quilting the Quilt’ (first session)

This is my dad, Ed, but his family and friends all call him Bud. He’s always been an enthusiastic supporter of my work both directly and indirectly (when I was just beginning art school, I distinctly remember the great joy and pride that he took in helping me built the wooden stretcher for my first painting). Dad and I spend quite a bit of time this weekend talking about my research, and what this particular quilt means to me personally. We also talked a bit about what others might think about when it’s finally finished and I have to opportunity to share it publicly.

When I mentioned that I would be honoured if he would be the first to begin helping me with this, the final stage (button quilting) of my literature review, he jumped at the opportunity. I have to say that I had no idea he had such sewing skills! I’m constantly learning new things about my family though this research, it’s a real gift.. Thank you Dad!


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At some point after I finished my masters in Victoria BC, I began to seek out some traditional craft workshops offered around town. Late one fall I stumbled upon a traditional fabric button making workshop at Craigdarroch Castle ( put on by a local heritage society. It was hands-on & very informative, and I gained a whole new level of respect for those beautiful crochet fabric buttons we can still sometimes find on vintage handmade clothes. I have collected a number of different buttons over the years since, and had even been given a few buttons which belonged to my maternal grandmother. Without any way of knowing it, I know feel that they were alway somehow destined for this project. The first button that I attached was one of Nanny’s and it felt like attaching her stamp of approval. I hope that she’d agree..


Later in the afternoon on Sunday, my niece came for a visit and she seemed to have a great time working on the quilt. She hadn’t sewn before so we worked on the buttons together until she got the hang of it – which, let me tell you, didn’t take long. My sister had a hard time convincing her when it was time to go!

(She can be such a great little ham!)


IMG_0848More to come over the next week, the quilt isn’t nearly totally joined and my two kids can’t wait to get at it..!

Published by Danielle Hogan

Visual artist, writer, curator, educator

2 thoughts on “Final Stage: ‘All in the Family’ or ‘Quilting the Quilt’ (first session)

  1. This quilt is becoming a generational one in many ways! I’m going to start searching for old buttons. We actually found a shirt made by FELLOWS and all the buttons have that name embossed on them. I cut the spares off & plan to incorporate them into a Christmas gift for Erin. . And so it goes…..

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