Hobo Quilts and Inspiration . . .

I received the most wonderful note from, Jean, a Creative Mojo listener and a teacher.  You might remember that she smacked my hand about a crack I made about teachers during a segment I did on Hobo Quilts a few months ago.   Well, would you look at this!   Jean used the Hobo Quilts as a lesson for her class.   I am so touched and PROUD by all of this, that I had to share the letter and photos with you!  xoxom

It’s been a few months since I last emailed you. I continue to listen and enjoy Creative Mojo each week, and I truly look forward to hearing you and your guests chat.

The last time I wrote, you mentioned me on your show, and that is one of the reasons I am writing this evening. I have Hobo quilt pictures from my seventh graders! The quilt is not a traditional quilt sandwich, but rather a fabric and paper creation. Dawn, my art teacher colleague, and I decided that needle and thread would be more than we could bite off, in part because most of the school’s sewing machines had to be sent elsewhere. We lost our “Family and Consumer Science” class last year, and sadly, this year the sewing machines followed. After the seventh graders made hand sewn stuffed animals at Christmas, I think Dawn may have poked herself in the eye with a needle if I had pushed for a traditional quilt. I spent a few days sorting through my stash and ended up with two plastic trash bags of fabric I no longer wanted. Using the Hobo quilt book, paper, scissors, glue, and my stash rejects, the kids made a giant wall quilt. In my English class, we read Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse which is a novel told in free verse poetry through the eyes of a fourteen-year-old girl. It is set in Oklahoma during the Dust-bowl and Depression. At one point, Billie Jo, the main character, decides to run away, and she spends a night in a boxcar with a hobo. We discussed the reasons hobos left home, the make-do spirit of the 1930’s, who made quilts then and where they got fabric, and why someone today wrote the hobo quilt book.

I also had another connection to your radio show today. I was working on a poetry unit that we will start this next week, making a digital file of the poems we will use in a vote-off tournament of poetry. One of the poems in our textbook is “Frankenstein,” and as I was not familiar with the poet, I did a quick click into Wikipedia to read his bio. And what did I discover? I knew more about the poet than I imagined because I heard you talk to him on your radio show just a few weeks ago! Edward Field! I was so excited and surprised. I thought your interview with him was quite touching.

Let me know what you think of our quilt. I told my classes last week (after they finished the quilt) that this guy on the radio would be proud of them.

Thanks for your creative influence!

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7 Comments on “Hobo Quilts and Inspiration . . .”

  1. April 25, 2012 at 8:18 AM #

    What a wonderful letter and pictures! Thanks for sharing!


  2. Arlette T
    April 25, 2012 at 8:37 AM #

    Terrific story!! What was the date of the segment about hobo quilts? I’d love to listen to the podcast.


  3. Kornelia Massner
    April 25, 2012 at 8:47 AM #

    These are awsome…so glad they could come up with an inovative way to make the quilts and show them to us. WTG!


  4. Patty
    April 25, 2012 at 9:35 AM #

    What a wonderful story; I love all the connections. And the finished quilt is beautiful. The students must be so proud of it!


  5. April 25, 2012 at 9:41 AM #

    One of the best ideas I have heard about bringing children and quilts together. Congrats to both of you. Will look forward to hearing from one of those children about a quilt they make in the future and how they were inspired.


  6. Kathie Lavell
    April 26, 2012 at 3:59 PM #

    Such a beautiful creation! Congratulations to a very talented group of students and their teachers.


  7. April 27, 2012 at 8:29 AM #

    Thanks for sharing such a lovely post. I hope to try my hand at a hobo quilt sometime this year.


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