Piecing a Community

| By JeanAnn Taylor |

This past January 17th, over 100 members of the Asheville Quilt Guild came together at the Lutheran Church of the Nativity in Arden, NC for their 2017 Community Quilt Day. Their mission for the day was to make as many quilts as possible for the WNC community. These dedicated quilters lugged their sewing machines up a flight of stairs. They carried their scissors, rulers, rotary cutters, and thread all packed into large tote bags. They came with irons, ironing boards, and lots and lots of love – love for quilting and love for our community.

The quilters began their quest-of-the-day by picking up a ‘quilt-kit’ at the check-in desk. The kits are put together by member volunteers and quilt bees. They supply the quilters with the quilt pattern, a photo of what the finished quilt-top should look like, and cheerful fabric pre-cut into strips and squares ready to be stitched into a quilt-top. Seventy-three quilt-kits were available for this year’s Community Quilt Day. After the day of stitching, the quilters took their quilt-tops home to finish with quilting and binding. Within six weeks, the finished quilts will be returned to the guild ready to be given away to several groups in WNC.

Among the many organizations who will receive these quilts are the Veteran’s Retirement Home in Black Mountain, Mission Cancer Care, and Project Linus. Many quilts are distributed to children in need through hospitals, Sheriff’s departments, domestic violence centers, shelters, the Guardian ad Litem Program of the NC 30th Judicial District, fire and rescue squads. The guild also makes placemats for the clients of Meals on Wheels, ‘butterfly’ pillows for the Solace Hospice Center, and beanies for premature infants born at Mission Health System. Pillow cases and tote bags are frequently made and given to the Eliada Home and the Steadfast House.

The camaraderie among the guild members is contagious. The buzz of their sewing machines, the chatter as they stitch, and the hustle of accomplishing their task makes for a hectic yet satisfying day. According to Guild president Lynda Bock, “This is a service outreach that touches everyone.”

The Asheville Quilt Guild meets monthly with alternating day and night meetings. If you would like more information, please visit ashevillequiltguild.org.

Sandi Tomlin-Sutker
Written by Sandi Tomlin-Sutker