Quilts of Valor

Once again, it’s time for the National Quilts of Valor Sew Day on Saturday, 7 February. I’ll be sewing here all by my lonesome, but that’s OK. I do my best work that way. Most productive work, anyway!

For those of you want to participate in Quilts of Valor, but aren’t up to piecing a whole top, there is a great alternative. My friends at Machine Quilters Exposition (MQX) are collecting QOV blocks (to be made into tops later). Last year, they collected over 4,500 blocks. Think of it: four thousand, five hundred blocks! That is one big pile of quilts.

If you want to make blocks, please take a look at the patterns MQX chose from the designs of Candace West for the MQX donations.

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Wonderful, aren’t they? You can find her instructions for the blocks here. (While you’re at it, please take a few minutes to look around the MQX site. If you’re in New England, you must go to MQX in April. Yes, must. I had the pleasure of appraising at MQX-Midwest in Springfield, Illinois, this past September, and could go on for hours about what a wonderful show it was, and such a terrific group of people!)

I already have one entire top cut out to make and send to QOVF after it’s quilted and bound, but you can bet I will spend the rest of the day making blocks to send to New Hampshire. How about you? Think you can make a couple of blocks too? Just think how many they could get if we all made just two. Two!

(And by the way, I will be counting these blocks toward my goal of 350 blocks this year!)

Go. Sew. Make a block. And send it in. Please?

If it’s Tuesday…

…it must be Springfield. Or Brussels. Or something like that. You haven’t heard much from me (here, at least) in quite a while. Here’s why…

Many of you know by now that September and October have been idiotically crazy for me. Good crazy, but crazy nonetheless. It’s show season so I have been all over the place, and loving every minute of it.

Out of Time
Out of Time hung at two shows in September, and got a ribbon!

I started in mid-September at the Ozark Piecemakers Quilt Guild show, “Celebrate Quilting,” in Springfield, Missouri. I gave two lectures and a day full of appraisals. I also had three quilts hanging, “Out of Time” (which won a ribbon earlier in September at the Little Balkans Days show in Pittsburg, Kansas; “Round Holes, Square Peg” (more on that one another day); and “Trading My Sorrows.” It was, in a word, wonderful! The show was lovely, they kept me busy with appraisals, and treated me so well.

Springfield
Hello, Springfield!

The following week I was in Springfield, Illinois (yep, Springfield again. See what I did there?), for three days of appraisals at MQX Midwest. Janet-Lee Greer Santeusanio and Mary Schilke and their amazing crew run a top-notch show. (They are a seriously hard-working bunch of genuinely nice folks.) This was the first year they had the show in Springfield, and it was a terrific choice. The hotel (the Crowne Plaza) provided a wonderful, all-in-one venue to see quilts and vendors. I met some new friends there and got to give some quick hugs to others. I am keeping my fingers crossed that MQX will come back to our neck of the woods again.

Detour
A little detour

I had only one little glitch, a detour in St.Louis on my way home, but hey, that’s not bad at all. I was grateful that it was Saturday evening, though, and not rush hour. There are Starbucks everywhere (as in most cities), so after I wove my way through the detours, I fueled up before driving the last leg home.

Wonky Houses
Wonky Houses, ca. 1930. Hanging at the Powers Museum all month!

This past week I have been getting ready for a small exhibit of my Schoolhouse-pattern quilts, as part of the Maple Leaf Quilt Show at the Powers Museum in Carthage. After sewing eleventy-million miles of sleeves, we finally got my quilts hung. This is the first time most of these quilts have hung and I am so excited to be able to share them! The show will run all month so if you’re in the area, stop in. The hours are 10:30-4:30 Tuesday- Saturday; 12:30-4:30 on 19 October, and 6:00-8:00 p.m. on 20 October.

Crystal Bridges
At the entry to Crystal Bridges

Today I head to Arkansas for a weekend with the Missouri-Oklahoma-Kansas-Arkansas Quilt Study Group. Tonight we’ll enjoy a presentation on “Cousins: Coverlets and Quilts.” Saturday will be all about The Master Quilter of Mississippi–Martha Skelton. I’ll get to hang out with some of my buddies too. (IF I can squeeze it in, I’ll be stopping by Crystal Bridges for a few hours. The last time I was there was January for the O’Keeffe/Stieglitz exhibit, I’m sure things have changed!

Dare to Dance -- Tuesday
Dare to Dance by Mary Kerr

Next week I’ll be zooming to Kansas City for the Original Sewing & Quilt Expo in Overland Park and as many appraisals as I can fit in all over the city. I am really looking forward to seeing Mary Kerr’s exhibit, “Dare to Dance.” You might remember that I was so fortunate as to have one of my quilts included in the book. Now I’ll get to see at least a part of the rest of the them. Hugging my pals will be high on my do list for the weekend too.

Also in October…four days appraising at the museum, a day at an art gallery in Kansas, and maybe a Tuesday or two sleeping in my own bed. Maybe.

Have I mentioned that I love my job? I really, truly do. Yes, it gets a little hectic at times but what could be better than what I do? I meet terrific people and see fabulous quilts. Does it get any better than that?