She believes heritage is passed down through learning and experience.
Mama sees the quilt as well as the churn top and dasher Dee wishes to take, as functional items rather than decorations.
The characters, Maggie and Dee, are foils of each other, each one having different interests and priorities in their lives.
In the short story "Everyday Use", by Alice Walker, the hand-stitched quilts, which are the central symbols, are representative of culture, heritage and a way of life. Walker describes her a big boned woman and we get the sense that she is manly.
Walker gives us the impression she is a father figure as well as a mother to her daughters.