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Quilters exhibit at courthouse art gallery

M. Claire May
Published: Thursday, November 29th, 2012

Quilts of the Custer Piecemakers Quilt Guild are on display at the Custer County Courthouse art gallery through December. From left are Lois Sietsma, Norma Horkey, Joyce Jindra, Sue Parker, Janice Moore and Phyllis Terrall.

 

It is said those who sleep under a quilt, sleep under a blanket of love. Several Custer Piecemakers Quilt Guild members exhibiting through December at the Custer County Courthouse Art Gallery have covered many with their quilted love. The quilters exhibiting are Norma Horkey, Phyllis Terrall, Joyce Jindra, Lois Sietsma, Sue Parker, Janice Moore, Karen Kraus, Carol Roberts Caster, Jackie Kennedy Groves French, Linda Polito, Lyn Kolund, Marcia Busskohl and Mary Zolmosky.
The guild was established September 1990 to share ideas, inspire each other and keep the art of quiltmaking alive. Membership has grown to 45 members.
According to Piecemaker Brenda Anderson, the first Thursday monthly meetings involve “show and tell” and/or a short program and working on individual or group projects. Every year the guild creates a quilt to raise funds for quilt class educators and special projects such as nursing home resident lap robes and quilts for community families that have experienced a disaster.
One project is a round-robin in which each member of a four-member team selects her own theme and colors. The quilt is passed to each team member with the owner being the last recipient. A quilt guild foursome creation displayed is the butterfly panels, friendly butterflies. 
“We had a lot of fun plus it brought the members of our guild closer together,” Horkey said.
Another guild project was Horkey’s Christmas tree. Each member brought a large piece of fabric.  Each would tear the fabric piece in half, depositing half in a bag to be moved to the next person. The remaining piece was torn in half and deposited in the bag again and they continued until each member had a very small piece. The quilters used all these pieces to create a wall hanging.
“I put mine together in a Christmas tree pattern and it reminded me of the Christmas trees when I was a child,” Horkey said.
Horkey’s mother made baby quilts for everyone. 
“She passed her passion on to me,” she said. 
Horkey started quilting in 1987 when she owned a fabric shop.
“Through the shop and my awesome customers, I got the fever,” she said. “Everyone is an ‘artist’ at something.  Mine just happens to be with fabric,” she said.
Sue Parker has always appreciated the beauty of quilts and making them may have been her destiny.  Upon discovering her paternal grandmother had made quilts, inheriting her deceased mother’s Bernina sewing machine and finally purchasing her first quilting book and fabric 15 years ago, it assured Sue that she would continue the legacy.  Although her mother only sewed garments, she “makes quilts, not for the art, but to give away to family members, friends and charities.”
“I am no artist; I like that I can make a quilt, have it look nice and it gets used, too,”â��she said.â��“It is fun to make seasonal quilts to decorate with, which is what I do with the little quilt in the show (Let it Snow).” 
Phyllis Terrall’s inspiration have been her quilting grandmother; husband, Scotty; and friends.
“My husband got me started by purchasing my first pattern and fabric for my first real quilt,” she said. “Quilting has gotten me through two bouts of cancer. When there was little else I could do, I could be at my sewing machine and do piece work or be at the table cutting fabric.”
“Bouquet of Birds, which is a foundation-pieced pattern of Bird of Paradise flowers, was a pattern that was a challenge to make,” Terrall said.
Many different causes, among them church fund-raisers, have benefited from Terrall’s creations. She said the Piecemakers have quilted for benefits, children in foster care, many fundraisers, pillowcases for hospitalized children and recently “Quilts of Valor” for military service families.
Terrall has been making quilts for her sister’s nine high school graduating grandchildren. Using a log cabin style block, each quilt is laid out in a different pattern and the graduate’s favorite colors. Having stitched 75 quilts these past 10 years, Terrall said she likes a variety of different colors, patterns and combinations.  Some of her quilts are patterns of her own, some are patterns she has adjusted to fit the use of the quilts and some are just quilts she likes and wants to make.
In 1997 a good friend introduced Lois Sietsma to quilting. She started with small wall hangings before sewing her first king-sized bed quilt.
“I like the precision of quilting, as the pieces all relate to each other geometrically,” she said.
A love of fabrics, the hand-made and tailoring has morphed into a passion for quilting.
“I just happen to like working with textiles: cottons, wools and yarns,” she said.
Sietsma’s “Leaves and Acorns” wall hanging is hand-appliquéd and hand-quilted.
“I find both techniques very enjoyable to do but extremely time consuming.  I rarely do that much handwork anymore, as I prefer to do as much as possible by machine,”â��she said.
Her “Leaves” is appliquéd entirely by machine, which allowed her to explore a new technique and play with color.
“Each leaf was appliquéd to a black background, then sliced on the diagonal and re-sewn to a different contrasting section, which scattered the colors nicely over the quilt,”â��she said.â��“I like the creative side of quilting, putting colors and textures together to make something new that is decorative and yet utilitarian—a quilt is eye-candy that keeps someone warm.”
“When I was very young, I remember our living room with quilting frames set up and a group of ladies sitting and quilting and visiting,” said Jindra.  “Never did I believe that I would eventually be sitting around with friends doing the same thing!”
As a teenager, Jindra was shown a box of quilted pieces that her mother had sewn as a young mother with Joyce’s grandmother, as well as those her grandmother had hand-pieced.
“I inherited those pieces and in some strange way they seemed to connect me with my grandmother and a part of the past,” she said. “I recently gave those quilted pieces to my 32-year-old granddaughter and she, in turn, expressed the feeling she got just from touching and looking at the pieces from the past.
“Those little pieces of sewn together fabric are connecting generation to generation in a way that’s hard to imagine,” she said.
With the birth of the first grandchild, Jindra struggled teaching herself to quilt, took a class and was hooked. One quilting retreat in 2002 at Outlaw Ranch has extended into eight weekends a year with 40-60 quilters.
“Quilting is one of those beautiful things that draws women of all ages and backgrounds together,” she said.
— Submitted by 
M. Claire May

It is said those who sleep under a quilt, sleep under a blanket of love. Several Custer Piecemakers Quilt Guild members exhibiting through December at the Custer County Courthouse Art Gallery have covered many with their quilted love. The quilters exhibiting are Norma Horkey, Phyllis Terrall, Joyce Jindra, Lois Sietsma, Sue Parker, Janice Moore, Karen Kraus, Carol Roberts Caster, Jackie Kennedy Groves French, Linda Polito, Lyn Kolund, Marcia Busskohl and Mary Zolmosky.

The guild was established September 1990 to share ideas, inspire each other and keep the art of quiltmaking alive. Membership has grown to 45 members.

According to Piecemaker Brenda Anderson, the first Thursday monthly meetings involve “show and tell” and/or a short program and working on individual or group projects. Every year the guild creates a quilt to raise funds for quilt class educators and special projects such as nursing home resident lap robes and quilts for community families that have experienced a disaster.

One project is a round-robin in which each member of a four-member team selects her own theme and colors. The quilt is passed to each team member with the owner being the last recipient. A quilt guild foursome creation displayed is the butterfly panels, friendly butterflies. 

“We had a lot of fun plus it brought the members of our guild closer together,” Horkey said.

Another guild project was Horkey’s Christmas tree. Each member brought a large piece of fabric.  Each would tear the fabric piece in half, depositing half in a bag to be moved to the next person. The remaining piece was torn in half and deposited in the bag again and they continued until each member had a very small piece. The quilters used all these pieces to create a wall hanging.

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