Quilt No.542KG - Kristine Gray

Kristine Gray
Owner: 
Kristine Gray
Location: 
NSW Sydney
Maker
Maker: 
Bessie Gray
Made in
AUSTRALIA NSW
Date: 
1941 - 1970
Description: 
Double sided frame quilt. All reused materials including corduroys, wools and light weight suitings. Machine made and not quilted There is no padding as already heavy and warm.
1780 x 1530mm
History: 

The quilt was made of necessity by Bessie Gray in Sydney in the mid 1940s. Bessie has given it to her daughter Kristine. It is not used.

Story: 

Robert (1857-1935) and Margaret (1865-1950) Mays were married at Hartley NSW in 1884. Robert came to Australia from Norfolk (England) in 1879. Margaret was the daughter of Samuel Perry a convict transported to Australia in 1835. They were pioneers of the Rydal district near Lithgow NSW. Robert and Margaret had 12 children.
Margaret (Maggie) (1897-1981) was a daughter of Robert and Margaret Mays. She and Arthur Flint were married in 1919 and moved to Bassett Downs a sheep station at Cowra NSW where Arthur worked on the property and Maggie cooked for farm labourers and shearers. They had 4 children. Maggie made her own soap, preserves, jams, pickles, sauces bread etc. just as her mother and sisters did. She also made all her children's clothes on a treadle sewing machine. Like her mother she had neither electricity nor running water in her home.
Bessie (born 1925)is a daughter of Margaret and Arthur Flint and grew up at Bassett Downs and lived there until she was 20 years old. She cooked for the shearers and did a man's job during the war, mustering, killing sheep, milking cows etc. She also learnt unarmed combat. Bessie married Ian Hamilton Gray in 1946 and they moved to the St. Mary's district NSW where they had 4 girls. This was the first time she had electricity and running water. Bessie ran the school canteen for 10 years, made her own pickles, jams, preserves etc. She also knitted , crocheted, embroidered and made all the children's clothes. Kristine, her daughter, remembers having her first bought dress when she was 13. Bessie is still an active needlewoman, knitting and crocheting for her grand children and Mission Austeralia. She has passed on her considerable skills to her daughters just as she learnt from her mother, Margaret Flint, who in turn had learnt from her mother, Margaret Mays.
Most of the quilts registered with the NQR were made by Bessie Gray at her home at St. Marys on a treadle sewing machine. All the quilts were made of necessity. Scraps left over from making the children's clothes were often joined when the garment was finished with and put away until there were enough joined pieces to make a quilt. The very heavy ones were called 'Waggas' and the others 'rugs' or 'blankets'. Many of the quilts were made in one large piece and then folded over. Bessie and Kristine Gray can still recall which garments many of the scraps came from.
The quilts are valued and will be handed on in the family with pride.

[Notes taken from family history accounts by Kristine Gray and also conversations Bessie Gray, Kristine Gray and Wendy Hucker (NQR) in Wagga Wagga on 2/3 October 1999]

Robert and Margaret May, c.1888
Robert and Margaret May, c.1888
Margaret and Arthur Flint, 1919
Margaret and Arthur Flint, 1919
Bessie and Ian Hamilton Gray, 1946
Bessie and Ian Hamilton Gray, 1946
Share

Related Quilts:

Busselton Historical Society
The strip quilt is handsewn and quilted. Quilt top has 13 panels or strips of 3 different cotton lawn floral prints. Some fabrics are now wearing. Backing is of plain white cotton. The padding is wool. Quilting features a triple row cable design with flower motifs.
2100 x 1800mm
Wangaratta Historical Society
9 large blocks of crazy patchwork in silks and velvets. The blocks are divided by strips of deep ruby coloured silk. There is a wide ruby border with peaks to which is attached cream lace. The backing is beige silk. The main blocks are outlined with feather stitch in gold thread and many individual patches are outlined in fancy stitches and have embroidered motifs some of which are Australian eg centre patch has Sturt's Desert Pea flowers, parrots, wattle. There are also English flowers, Japanese motifs, flags, domestic objects and Marianne's initials. Embroidery is in a variety of threads including chenille.
2250 x 2180mm
The Pioneer Women's Hut
Patchwork quilt made up of 100mm multi coloured squares in a variety of materials including cottons, synthetics, lurex, plain and printed. Each square has dacron padding and is then joined in strips and the strips joined. All hand sewn. The backing is blue synthetic whole cloth 60mm of which is returned to the front to form a border.
1500 x 1200mm
Ida Blenkiron
Wholecloth cot quilt of floral cotton in a pattern of pink roses, green leaves, and blue ribbons. Paddiong is old blanketing, and backing is a soft fawn twill. The cotton was the same fabric as the bedroom curtains. No quilting.
1010 x 840mm
National Trust of Australia (NSW)
Utility quilt hand and machine sewn. The top has a centre frame of hand sewn hexagonal patches in a mix of dress materials and shirtings with four corner flowers and a roughly circular ring in red and blue stripe. The inner border has rectangular pieces in red/yellow/green/white hexagon printed material alternating with a blue/white spot. The outer border consists of large pieces of material, predominantly pink and blue stripes and checks. The backing is mainly red/white printed cotton. It is quilted all over in a diamond pattern. The padding is mainly flannel and has been made from another quilt.
1975 x 1675mm
Susan Shannon
This hand pieced and hand quilted hexagon quilt is in a pattern often called 'Grandmother's Flower Garden'. The background is white and there are concentric rows of double rosettes each with a yellow centre. The colours start in the centre of the quilt with pink and then follow the rainbow. Paper templates were used. The padding is cotton (American) and the backing is cotton floral poplin.
2360 x 1730mm