Quilt No.917AK - Ann Kyranis

Ann Kyranis
Owner: 
Ann Kyranis
Location: 
QLD Brisbane
Maker
Maker: 
Maria Efstathis
Made in
AUSTRALIA QLD
Date: 
1941 - 1970
Description: 
Traditional Greek quilt. The top is a piece of deep red and gold brocade (in Greek a 'stoffa'). The border and the backing are made from gold brocade woven with a daisy pattern. It is hand quilted in parallel lines.
2150 x 1720mm
History: 

The quilt was made by Maria Efstathis in El Arish, Queensland in the 1950s. It was made for her daughter, Ann Kyranis, who has been the only owner. It is not used now.

Story: 

"From Kastellorizo to Queensland
Ann Kyranis' lovely 'paploma' (quilt) was one of several made by Maria (Pitsonis) Efstathis. Maria was the only daughter in her family on the tiny Greek island of Kastellorizo, and married Eleftheri Efstathis on his return there in 1933, to find a bride. He had been in Australia for several years, working with his brothers in the Liberty Cafe in the small north Queensland town of Tully. This had enabled him to provide his new bride with a brand new house, a traditional 'Queenslander'. Other women, at that time, were not so fortunate, arriving from their beautiful Mediterranean island to 'dirt floors in the cane cutting barracks'! Many Greek men from Kastellorizo were employed in the cane fields, as well as in cafes - their women endured the pain and isolation of coming to a new country and very difficult living conditions. Maria was always thankful for her new house and for the company of other Kastellorizian women.
For Maria, it was unthinkable that her three daughters should marry without a traditional 'paploma'(quilt) in their 'prika' (dowry or trousseau). But to make this happen in this remote place was an enormous challenge. For two of the quilt tops, Maria used a patterned brocade piece, a 'stoffa', which she had purchased in Alexandria, Egypt, when travelling to Australia. The gold and dusty-pink brocades were bought somewhere more local; as were a huge number of rolls of cottonwool - probably from the local chemist, as there were no supermarkets then. This was Maria's practical solution to the problem of having no raw cotton to use as padding.
To make each quilt, Maria would carefully unroll the cottonwool and its paper lining (about 9" or 23 cms wide) inside the sewn casing, then, just as carefully, would remove the long strips of paper, leaving behind the thin layer of cottonwool. With these many layers in place, came the laborious task of handstitching the design all over the quilt. An enormous labour of love - all done 'on the wooden floors in the heat of north Queensland!'
Ann, the oldest of Maria's five children, at age eighteen married Agapitos (Jack) in Cairns. Sadly, Jack died at a young age leaving Ann with their two sons, James John and Terry John. Now there are five grandchildren - James and Irene have Anna Jane, Jonathan and Stephen; Terry and Katina have Jake and Ann-Marie.
Over the years, Ann has been very involved with various organisations, particularly in connection with St. George Greek Orthodox Church. She has made a very important contribution to the development of the Greek community in Brisbane by founding the Hellenic Dancers in 1977, and working with them until 1999, her particular interest and responsibility were the authentic Greek costumes worn by the dancers.
Ann regards her 'paploma' with its associated memories and stories, as a tribute to her mother Maria."
[Written by Lula Saunders, adapted from interview 6/9/00 for the National Quilt Register]

Eleftherios & Maria Efstathis 1933
Eleftherios & Maria Efstathis 1933
The Efstathis family outside their Queenslander house 1951
The Efstathis family outside their Queenslander house 1951
Share

Related Quilts:

Yvonne Hamdorf
Wholecloth pram quilt with a top of pink cotton sateen, and the reverse is a more finely woven, ivory, fabric. All over quilting design as main feature, with stylised hearts, leaves and cross hatching. The padding is cotton batting. 870 x 660 mm.
John Tomkin
Hand stitched, cotton, appliquéd, quilt in a flower pattern on a plain background. Colours are shades of green, apricot and browns. This quilt was known as a 'Bride's Quilt'. Padding is thought to be layers of white fabric raised almost like a wadding. The backing is cotton material. 2470 x 2020 mm.
Red Cliffs Historical Society
Garland with berries appliqued on wholecloth quilt of off white cotton. The backing is whole cloth in soft green. The garland (ribbon appearance) is in floral patterned green. The red berries are padded. It is machine quilted. Dacron type padding.
1820 x 1500mm
Melinda Smith
Wholecloth cover in synthetic rayon. Centre plain, drop slightly gathered, edging border is large saw tooth appliqued pieces in flannelette, striped seersucker, crepe de chine. Materials typical of the 30s through to the 50s. The appliqued triangles are chain stitched in yellow thread which also anchors them to the backing.
2450 x 1940mm
Romsey/Lancefield & Districts Historical Society
Wholecloth quilt made of royal blue satin, squares around a central panel. Seam lines are covered with a faggoting stitch. All names are embroidered in satin stitch, the central motif is hand painted. The border is quilted with a repeat scroll ing pattern in hellow thread, and edges are trimmed with a fringe of small pom-poms in burgundy, gold, blue and yellow, the colours mixed in each pom-pom. Quilt is backed with yellow satin cotton. Centre has embroidered: "Lancefield/ Presbyterian/ Sale of Gifts/ February, 1896'.
1880 x 1330mm
National Trust of Australia (WA)
Wholecloth Durham quilt of white cotton sateen front and backing. Handsewn. Padding is wool. Quilting patterns include a centre of 8 petalled flower within a double circle with radiating palmettes on a cross hatched background and borders of leaves and branches.
2330 x 19400mm