dee quilt front

Homecoming: front

I recently completed this quilt for Dee (who is also a Denise) a former high school classmate and dear friend. When she contacted me and asked if I could transform her cheerleading uniforms from the early 1970s I knew I was in for a fun project.

dee quilt back

Homecoming: back

In our early consultations we discussed the idea of a forest-type scene for a wall-hanging. But once I got the actual materials and started deconstruction, I realized we had a lot of green and white and that the forest concept might prove a little too garish without the addition of other fabrics. I also thought a lot about Dee’s current life and what I knew about her from years ago. From this, the idea of a lap quilt that used a modified picket fence block was born. Dee has transitioned from the business world to farmer, happy to be back to her roots. She has always loved the outdoors, caring for animals, and tending her gardens.

The name of the quilt, Homecoming, refers to the traditional meaning of a return to one’s school as well as the idea of coming home to one’s purpose. In this way the quilt bridges these times in Dee’s life.

No fabric other than the uniforms was used in the construction of this quilt, with the exception of a cotton muslin piece which substitutes for traditional batting.  It was quilted with invisible thread on a home machine. The quilt was constructed out of one plaid jumper with a plaid and white pleated skirt, one green and white pleated skirt, one green kick pleated skirt, and one green pleated skirt. The corner buttons are from the original jumper. The emblems on the back are from the sweaters.

dee quilt corner

Corner detail


Vermont Quilt Festival 2013

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The annual Vermont Quilt Festival was this past weekend, and as in previous years it did not disappoint. It was inspirational in both creative and technical presentation of a wide range of quilts of all sizes. My sister-in-law and I both marveled not only at the quilts but at how this event that started in our little town 37 years ago with a small showing of quilts in the local armory has grown to a major exhibit that attracts thousands of visitors. The contest draws submissions from around the world, and several years ago it outgrew the space it came to occupy here on the Norwich University campus, forcing it to move to the Champlain Valley Exposition. Words cannot do this show justice, so here are photos of some of my favorites from this year. If you’ve never been to a quilt show of this quantity and quality I encourage you to find one close enough to visit at least once!

“Roses From Mother” Features rose blocks embroidered by the quilter’s mother back in the 1940s.
By Jacque Z. Thompson; long arm machine quilted by Janet-Lee Santeusanio

“Hive in Summer”
By Hope Johnson

By Julian Pittarelli, Age 14. This is her first quilt.

“Twisted 60s”
By Beverly A. Cook

“My 12 Step Program” Made with real candy wrappers!
By Lucille Makrin

“E. Pluribus Unum: Out of Many, One” There are 289 different background squares in the full range of colors.
By Timna Tarr

“Three Sisters Beauty”
By Michelle Banton

“Ode to Sandy”
By Judy Iaquinto; long arm quilted by Wilma Wood

By Debbie Rouse