Since 2000, when twenty women organized the Piecemakers Quilt Group, they have gathered for a purpose. Formed initially as a means of learning and promoting the art of quilting, Piecemakers have evolved into a dynamic, working organization whose primary goal is to help others through their quilting endeavors.
Based at Grace Methodist Church in Hicksville, Ohio the group is ‘ecumenical’ and new quilters are always welcome. The members meet regularly on the first Thursday of each month at the church for a potluck supper followed by show and tell, pass the hat, and planning future projects and workdays, which are scheduled throughout the month to complete those projects. There is no membership fee or requirements for joining: just a willing spirit and a quilter’s heart. Projects are self-funded by the members.
Since its inception, Piecemakers have made and donated dozens of quilts for a wide variety of causes: mission trips, Habitat for Humanity, veterans groups, Project Linus, Purple Heart/Quilts of Valor, Community Memorial Hospital, Hickory Creek nursing home residents, Tiana’s Wish, The Woodburn Christian Children’s Home, Church World Service, the Police Department, Relay for Life, guide dogs, Christmas Cruise, youth groups, benefits for people in need, The Huber Opera House, Orphan Grain Train, and others. Through these activities, the members have learned and grown as quilters, sharing what they know with others and completing their own works of fabric art.
In 2023 the guild decided to host a quilt show to showcase their talents with fellow quilters. A lot of work goes into hosting a quilt show: getting the word out for entries, publicizing it to other area quilt guilds, determining how to display the quilts, vendors, security, glove ladies to handle the quilts and a crew to provide lunch. One of the most anxious moments is waiting to see how many quilts are brought in to exhibit; that wasn’t an issue for this show. Over 60 quilts were registered for display. The quilts were draped over the church pews and the balcony and communion rails; every pew was utilized. Other church rooms were used for a flea market, a silent auction, and quilt sales by two other church-based quilting groups.
One of the fun things about this kind of quilt show is everyone gets to choose their favorite quilt and award ribbons are presented to the top three favorites: voters chose Diane Collins’s pieced batik sampler in luscious dark colors for third place; second place went to a quilt named At Ringo Lake – a mystery quilt in aqua and coral shades – created by Margaret McMillen, the ‘at the lake’ neighbor of a local woman; and best of show was Forest Friends, an adorable mix of animals and graded shading, well pieced by Angie Slattery. Angie is an independent quilter of ten years and made the quilt for the bed her granddaughters sleep in when they stay at her house.
for a first-time endeavor by a small but mighty group of quilters, they were very pleased that the show garnered over $1,100 for their charitable projects. The Piecemakers will not have a quilt show in 2024, rather the Harlan Methodist Church quilt group will host one and the two churches will continue to alternate their shows across the Indiana/Ohio border.
So many hands creating so many quilts, viewed by so many to give a helping hand to those in need. It doesn’t get any better than that!
Lois Levihn is the owner of Born Again Quilts. If you have a textile story to share, contact her at 260-515-9446 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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