Whenever someone expresses doubt that a quilt is an appropriate cover for a mortuary cot, I remind them that quilts have been an American tradition for as long as the country has existed.  Folks (predominantly women) have made quilts to commemorate weddings, celebrate births and even remember the dead.

From an article by Etsy crafter, BabyAnneQuilts, comes this nugget of history:

Even in death, quilts sometimes played a significant role. During a difficult journey moving westward, death was common. But scarce wood or lack of time, often prevented trail travelers from making coffins. On these occasion, the dead were often buried wrapped in a family quilt. Those leaving the dead behind were comforted knowing that their loved one had something symbolizing the family’s love in their lonely grave.

So not only are our quilts better looking than the alternative (fake fur or corduroy), but they’re also infused with the whole history of quilts and the way quilts make us feel.

If I ask someone to describe what a quilt means to them, they often share feelings of “grandma” or “home” or “comfort.”  Others say that a quilt makes them feel like snuggling up with someone they love or they share a comforting memory of a beloved person who made them a quilt.

Quilting bees, where quilters come together to make a quilt, help create a community that encourages shared work and shared rewards.

Susies Baby Quilt

 (Susie opens a baby shower gift:  a baby quilt made by Karen Good of Iowa)

In short, quilts are more than just batting sandwiched between stitched fabrics.  Quilts are love and comfort and history and memories.

It’s impossible to know how your client families will react to a quilted cot cover, except to say that few people have negative feelings or memories about quilts.