suzanna's mystery quilt

This quilt belongs to my friend Suzanna Bryan who asked me to put a sleeve on its back so she can hang it on the wall in her beautiful Virginia farm house. Well it is not a quilt per se. It has no batting, and no backing. It is machine pieced together, but the rest of the work is done entirely by hand. Every person, creature, shape, and line is hand appliqued and embroidered.

It may not even be that old, but I adore it. I love the color, the texture, and the story it is trying to tell. Something important is being created at the center of the piece, involving lots of man power, stately animals, and guardians. Neither Suzanna nor I know the quilts origin. She bought it from an antique dealer in Charlottesville, several years ago.

It is intriguing and while we were looking at it together our imagination was running wild. Afghani possibly? Is the larger than life figure near the building site a friend or a foe? Is that women hiding under the cloaks while traveling by donkey?

Do you know what this could be?