By: Nora Pickens
A survey of New Mexico quiltmakers, conducted in 1985 by the museum of International Folk Art, included only those quilters who learned the craft in childhood or youth from family or community. Women who learned in this way tend to have come of age between the two world wars; younger women seldom learned in this way. The quilts made by these women are made from scraps; in New Mexico there was not a parallel tradition of “nice” quilts. These quilts, emphasizing colors and shapes rather than meticulous quilting stitches speak clearly of the rugged, isolated life here in the recent past.