Quilt No.918AP - Anastasia Penklis

Anastasia Penklis
Owner: 
Anastasia Penklis
Location: 
QLD Brisbane
Maker
Maker: 
Maria Efstathis
Made in
AUSTRALIA QLD
Date: 
1941 - 1970
Description: 
Traditional hand stitched Greek quilt, the top piece (in Greek a 'Stoffa') is of blue brocade with a gold pattern of roses and leaves. The border and backing are made from gold brocade woven with a daisy pattern (the same material as is in sister Ann Kyranis' quilt). The padding is cotton wool.
2100 x 1740mm
History: 

The quilt was made by Maria Efstathis in El Arish, Queensland in the 1950s. It was one of 3 made for her 3 daughters. This one for Anastasia Penklis, who has been the only owner. It is not used now.

Story: 

"Anastasia's Paploma
This traditional 'paploma'/quilt was made for Anastasia (Esta) by her mother, Maria Efstathis, during the 1950's, in their 'Queenslander' house. Anastasia remembers the big sheet coming out, the 'paploma' being spread out and her mother meticulously sewing in the stitches which form the overall pattern, but also hold in place the thin cotton layers she had so carefully placed inside the quilt casing.
Anastasia also remembers Maria's concern to have her three daughters properly prepared for getting married - each 'paploma' was to be part
of a much bigger 'prika', a trousseau or glory box: 'we had to have all these tablecloths, and doilies and duchess sets�..and we didn't have a sewing machine. I recall that the lady we used to buy the milk from had one�.it would be carted over the fence. Then mum would sit there, working at the telaro (embroidery frame).'
Diaspora Greeks have always worked hard to maintain their customs and traditions - those in towns and villages of north Queensland were no exception! Each year, at Greek Easter, by far the biggest of all Greek celebrations, Maria would rent two rooms in a boarding house in Innisfail, twenty five miles away. This made it easier for the family to attend the various services at the 'Dormition of the Virgin Mary' Greek Orthodox Church. Built in 1935, it was the first Greek church to be built in Australia, outside of capital cities. Anastasia and her sisters always had new dresses replete with 'a big, wide band and three cherries on each side',made by their mother - a different dress for each special day, Good Friday, Easter Saturday and Easter Sunday!
As with so many other women at that time, Anastasia, always a high achiever in school mathematics, suffered from the fact that her father's generation believed that education was only for boys; girls had to 'learn to cook, sew and do housework'! Again it was preparation for getting married. Anastasia did manage a few years of outside work, as pay clerk and bookkeeper etc. She married Michael Penklis in 1960; they have one son, Konstantine; he and his wife Vaitsa have a daughter, also called Anastasia. These days Anastasia works with her son who runs an optometry practice."
[Written by Lula Saunders, adapted from interview 6/9/00 for the National Quilt Register]

3 sisters, Anastasia Penklis, Christine Kyprios, Ann Kyranis, 2000
3 sisters, Anastasia Penklis, Christine Kyprios, Ann Kyranis, 2000
Eleftherios & Maria Efstathis 1933
Eleftherios & Maria Efstathis 1933
The Efstathis family outside their Queenslander house 1951
The Efstathis family outside their Queenslander house 1951
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