Michigan Quilt Project
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The African American Collection

Maple Leaf
Rosie L. Wilkins
1987
Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
Silk with polyester filling
70” x 80 1/2”
MSUM 6935.1
Photo by Pearl Yee Wong, all rights reserved Michigan State University Museum

Most of her quilts were given away as gifts to each of her grandchildren and 20 great children. Her house today (1988) is filled with boxes and suitcases full of fabric scraps, partially completed blocks, and finished tops ready to be quilted.
"I love the quilting and piecing," she says. "I do my piecing in the winter and my quilting in the summer." Often after fixing her husband a mid-day meal, Wilkins will begin her sewing and not stop until 10:00 or 11:00pm. "I don't keep house... I keep busy doing things." Spending hours each day with her sewing, Wilkins also remains very active in a number of ways.

By Marsha MacDowell from, The Quilts of Rosie Wilkins, Improvisational Quiltmaking in the African-American Tradition exhibit



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