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Sunbonnet Sue and and Overall Sam quilt restored by Quilter’s World Editor Carolyn Vagts.It all started with a person unknown. It could be a family member, friend, neighbor, work associate or maybe a loyal Waynedale News reader. I could think of 20 people it could be, but I’d rather not think about the specific person, I’d rather think of the many wonderful people I know that anyone of them could have “done it”.

“Done what?” you ask. Someone “out there” recommended Born Again Quilts to the Journal Gazette as worthy to be their Small Biz Highlight of the week. Not just any week mind you. The Monday following the Super Bowl the Born Again Quilts graced the front page of the Journal Gazette business section. There in glorious color readers learned about the restoration work performed on almost a daily basis.

Emails hit the in-box from people eager to bring their quilts in for consultation. Some arrive with photos attached and the accompanying stories: “It was my grandfather’s …”

But one of the emails that stands out from all the others. The one with the subject line, “An interview for Annie’s Publishing.” This email from Quilter’s World magazine editor Carolyn Vagts requests an opportunity to interview me at the studio.

Now Carolyn doesn’t grab a flight from New York to interview me, rather she drives up from Amish Country: Berne, Indiana, the home of Annie’s Publishing formerly known for decades as House of White Birches. Annie’s celebrates home, family and the creative spirit in such publications as Crochet World, Creative Knitting, Card Maker, Good Old Days and Country Sampler to name a few.

For the interview I wear my BAQ scrubs, ready to perform a quilt autopsy at a moment’s notice. We quickly discover we have a lot in common: we are southpaws, writers, quilters, shop/studio owners and have restored a quilt.

Now where I have restored many quilts, Carolyn recently finished her first restoration. Down in the basement of Annie’s she discovers a hand-appliquéd hand-quilted Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Sam quilt. With it’s different prints and bubble gum pink border it is indicative of a bygone era. Carolyn decides to wash it to get that fresh-from-the-basement odor and grime out of it using Retro a product designed to remove stains from vintage textiles. The instructions are to pre-soak the item first before adding the Retro. To her dismay during the pre-soak stage she discovers the thread is rotted and will need to be replaced.

Replacing the thread around each appliqué piece takes hand stitching skills and a big time commitment. Busy with family and work, Carolyn resolves, this quilt deserves to be restored and takes the time to give it back its life. The Retro product works wonders and the quilt is now securely sewn and stain free. After completing the restoration Carolyn writes about her thoughts on the experience for Annie’s Newsletter. Not long after she reads about the Born Again Quilts studio and knows it would make a great follow-up to her own experience. So come March 8, you may go online to www.QuiltersWorld.com, scroll to the bottom of the left-hand column, sign up for the free online newsletter and read the interview. Coming soon! Carolyn has asked me to write an article for a future issue of Quilter’s World!

Note: The product “Retro” is available at Fabric and Friends Quilt Shoppe in Roanoke.

Lois Eubank is the owner of Born Again Quilts a restoration studio and vintage quilt gallery. You can contact her through The Waynedale News at news@waynedalenews.com.

Lois Levihn

She is the author of the "Around the Frame" quilting column. She is a graduate of Wayne HS. Quilts have always been important to her, she loves the stories surrounding them, the techniques used in making them, & restoring them. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer