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Lobi Book Quilt

The Lobi book quilt is part of the larger Lobi quilt. It hangs on the larger quilt, but can be detached for closer viewing. When we were at seminary together, Lobi always had a small notebook with her; she would use it to sketch, paste images,  and to write down things she wanted to remember. As I was making her larger quilt, it became clear that a book needed to be part of the work. I asked Lobi to send me a selection of images that were meaningful to her, though I did not tell her why I wanted them. Over time, many of them found their way into the book: Lobi as an angel at Burning Man, the hand of Fatima (which was a significant symbol for her), a Christian cross, a beaded heart, her beloved dog, the tree of life (as an echo of the larger one on the bigger quilt).

I also used quilting stitches to create images on some of the “blank” pages. The pages are unfinished at the edges, because Lobi, like the rest of us, is a work in progress.

Most surprising to both of us was the inclusion of Our Lady of Guadalupe. As I was making the quilts, I would frequently look through my trove of found objects, beads, fabric, and other supplies. Often, while searching for one thing, I would find another. Opening a drawer to get a particular button, a cardboard box with a picture of Our Lady of Guadalupe presented itself with an urgency and sense of purpose. She would not go away, and she needed to be on Lobi’s quilt.  Lobi and I had never spoken of Our Lady before, but I trusted that Lobi would know why she was meant to be there. After I had sewn the Lady in place, I called Lobi to ask her what the connection was. Lobi was speechless. Our Lady is the centerpiece to an altar Lobi had created in her home to honor her deceased nephew. I knew nothing about this until I asked. During our interview after the quilts were done, Lobi and I talked about this work of the Spirit. I was as astonished as she was.

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