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           Quilters United in Learning Together – Schenectady 

                                               March 2009                      

             Meetings on First Thursdays at 7 PM (Doors open at 6:30)

             First Unitarian Society, Schenectady – 1221 Wendell Avenue


















Dear Ones  -- 

         This is the time of year that I make at least a brief effort to clean up the sewing room.  Sigh.  I uncover even more unfinished projects than I remembered, which confirms the quilt tip: always finish a project before starting the next one.  I found beads and embellishments in several places but so far haven’t had the energy to get them all in the same place.  I got a book shelf nicely organized…and realized I’ve been saving too many books.  I put al the different computer papers and fabrics in a basket, but the basket no longer fits in its cubby.  I try to do some cleaning between projects, but I currently have 5 quilts in different states of done-ness, make that 6, so there is no “between” projects.  Everything that I pull out to fold, straighten, or organize sends my mind spinning with more ideas, color combinations, images….

         So, I came across my small but growing collection of bras and stories for a cloth book I’m hoping to do, and you can help me accomplish, about bras.  I’m calling it Boobs, Bras, and Bosom Buddies.  We all must have bra stories about our first, our last, nursing bras, mastectomy bras, broken straps, embarrassing moments, going braless, whatever.  I want to collect stories from women and their relationship with breasts and bras.  (Do I hear someone out there gasping!?!)  You don’t have to put your name on the story.  If you do, your name will be in the book, but not with your particular story.  If you also have a bra..or, THE bra…to go in the book, so much the better.  I’m hoping I can get one of those ‘50’s bras that pointed straight out, remember those?  Just stuff the story and the bra in a plastic bag and hand it to me at a guild meeting.

         So, while I wait to hear from you, I think I just might dust the sewing machine table.


Anita Paul, President


We’d like to extend a warm welcome to new members:  Elizabeth Villalobos, Sallie McGill, Gloria Dougrey, Barbara Sacawa, Shelah LaDuc, Carol Ashley, Mary Moran-Raymond,  and Jennie Kerwood.


For new members who may be confused by some of our activities, here is one activity description:


Goodie Basket – This table displays some quilting tools or fabric that you can win by purchasing tickets with numbers (Three for $1.00).  When the numbers on the matching ticket is called, you are a winner, and can choose something from the table.  The money from the sale of the tickets is used to purchase more items for the table.






SATURDAY, MARCH 21, 9:30 AM – 3:00 PM



Come play with us as we crate a crazy quilt square suitable for a pillow top or the start of a larger quilt.  This is an extension of the mini-workshop class with more materials and hands-on practice.  $15.00 Materials Fee (payable at workshop) for blocks, threads and embellishments.  Cost of workshop: $10  Contact Elaine to sign up.


            Our next quilt show will be upon us far too quickly.  To better prepare ourselves as we work on quilts for the 2010 show, Kathie Greenwold, award-winning quilter, teacher, quilt historian and accredited quilt judge, will share tips and information about how to make a prize-winning quilt.  Members’ quilts and questions will be addressed, providing a wealth of useful information.

Also remember to bring…

·    Your hand-sewn                                              name tag

·    “Show and Tell” projects

·    Donation to Boutique Bounty Bag

·    Quilts for Northeast kids

·    A friend or new member

·     Fat Quarter – TipToe Through the Tulips



MAY 7:  IN HONOR OF MOTHERS:  BETTY BETZ TRUNK SHOW (Along with a very special “Show and Tell”)


Betty Betz has an incredible collection of quilts and quilt-tops, all made by her mother.  She has graciously agreed to share the love and stories that each one holds, in a special program devoted to mothers.  We also want to invite our members to bring quilts made by their own mothers, grandmothers, or aunts, to share with us.  Just imagine the thousands of hours of loving handwork we will be witness to!  In honor of Mothers, we will also be collecting tote bags and items to put in them for women at the

City Mission Shelter.


Remember to Bring:

·    Your hand-sewn name tag

·    “Show and Tell” projects

·    Quilts for Northeast kids

·    Donation to Boutique Bounty

·    A friend or new member

·     Your Mother’s favorite color fat quarter



We will celebrate our last meeting of the season together with our wonderful potluck supper.  Please arrive by 6 pm with your food offerings and place settings.  The “Show and Tell” for the Mystery Quilts, Dots and Dashes Quilt Challenge, and raffle drawings will be enjoyed after  dinner.                      


Last names beginning with         A-H…… please bring main dish

                                                                                                 I-P……. please bring dessert

                                               Q-Z ….. please bring salad

Remember to bring…

·    A food for the dinner, plate, etc

·    Your hand-sewn name tag

·    The “Buddy Strip Quilt” project

·    “Dots & Dashes Challenge

·    Donation to Boutique Bounty

·    Charm Pack Basket quilt

·    Embellishment workshop quilt

·    Can’t Bear to Cut it Up quilt

·    Your “Mystery” Quilt

·    Quilts for soldiers

·    Quilts for Northeast kids

·    “Donor’s Choice” fat 1/4

Don’t Forget Your Roots

Part Two

          Part One of “Don’t Forget Your Roots” described the way that our guild was formed, and the first places that meetings were held.  Q.U.I.L.T.S. was bound to succeed, with so many creative and energetic women who had already given themselves over to the job of managing home and family, and still had more to give.  The first months of meeting were more casual than we now enjoy, with large amounts of “Show and Tell” and general sharing of ideas and techniques.


          When it seemed time to do a little more planning of meetings, our first major players would get together at the candy shop on Union Street to discuss ideas for “program” and of course, have a cup of tea and something chocolate to go with it.  At the time, there were no officers or official persons in charge.  Guild members enjoyed quilting and each other so much that the group existed for seven years before the idea took hold, to have people volunteer for certain positions of responsibility.


          From a 1989 newsletter in the historian files, I found an article announcing officers elected for the first time.  At least, this was the first time there was a printed record of officers.  In addition to the expected offices of president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer, and membership, historian, program, hospitality and library, there were a few others of interest:  news, raffle tickets, telephone, and trip co-coordinator.  I smiled at the idea of a telephone co-ordinator, or a telephone committee.  No one wants to answer the phone anymore, especially when they can see who’s calling.  What a tough job that was (and still is) to share information by Bell’s invention.  I like the idea of having a trip co-ordinator.  Wouldn’t it be fun to take a couple trips a year?  But I’ll bet that’s a tough job too.


          There was a very proud moment in our guild’s history that I didn’t know about until Shirley Hedman told me about it.  Q.U.I.L.T.S. was nominated for something called the “Golden Rule Award” offered by the J.C. Penney Company.  Q.U.I.L.T.S. was nominated for the following:


“Club members have made and donated over 200 hand-made quilts which have been distributed to three groups of children in local emergency shelters.”


          Q.U.I.L.T.S. did not win the award, but was honored at a ceremony,


One of the main reasons I was driven to write about the roots of Q.U.I.L.T.S. is because of the strength of the organization, and I can see from the old newsletters that the strength is still with us.  Former presidents and program chairs are still active members today:  Shirley Hedman, Chris Kaczynski, Kathie Greenwold, Nancy Finelli, Cathy Riccio Gruyters, and Marie Miller are in those pages.  Please be sure to let me know of others I may have missed.


          (Part Three will document our Q.U.I.L.T.S. association with Northeast Parent and Child.)





            Do you have your STRIP QUILT BUDDY YET?  Don’t forget to pair up with another quilter to produce a Northeast Strip Quilt!  I found a large piece of wild stripe fabric in my stash that Susan and I are going to use for blocks, binding, and backing, and we’re going to pass the fabric back and forth to make strips, using our own colors that match the stripes.





Don’t forget about the DOTS AND DASHES CHALLENGE!  Your quilt can be any size, shape, color or type, but it must have both polka dots and stripes somewhere.  I have so many ideas, I won’t be able to make all the dots and dashes quilts I have in my head!





            Pat Terry is happy to receive any donations for the Soldier Quilt Project.  She has already sent out one large shipment, and is collecting quilts to prepare for another shipment.                                              



OUR CURRENT OFFICERS:                                                                                        

President – Anita Paul                     374-2166

V.P. – Kathy Hermance                    355-2185

Secretary – Janet Baron                  355-2604

Treasurer – Janet Huston                 399-0919

Web Master – Mary McNamara      377-4580

Program - Elaine McCain                383-3337

            Carol Foucault                       346-7359

            Lynn Morhous                        370-1658

Membership – Kathy Wagner          356-2452       kwagner1@nycap.rr.comß

            Suzanne Bernadt                  346-2585

            Denise Duncan                     370-1870

Newsletter – Lois Bena                    399-0486

Library – Jeannie Cleveland            381-6519

                Natalie McDonough          382-0169

Goodie Basket – Linda Storz          383-7813      

                  Margaret Palange           371-5036

Fat Quarters – Orpha Schoener      383-2723

                         Betty Betz                  371-3244

Block of Month – Mary Wade          393-5469

                        Pam Wrzesinski        356-4298

                         --Susan Mezera        792-6319

Historian – Lynn Makrin                    596-6559

Hospitality – Bobbi Paulus              785-9786      

            Lynn Lauzon-Russom           372-0677

The following is a document prepared by Shirley Hedman, who has been collecting the quilts for Northeast for many years, providing a service to us and a blessing to the agency.  Her description of WHAT WE DO and HOW WE DO IT is something so helpful that I am printing it in our newsletter:




1.   Members use their own good-quality fabric to make a quilt top, adding enough fabric for the binding and the back as described below.  Keep in mind that the need is mostly for boys, and they’re mostly “big kids” – teenagers.  Design is up to the maker.


2.   Guidelines for the sizes of quilts are as follows:

      “Big Kid” Quilts – approximate size 50” x 70”

      “Little Kid” Quilts – approximate size 42” x 60” (can be larger but NO smaller)

      A finished back for each top – seam to make sure it’s big enough to cover the top with

      at least an inch or two extra on EACH side.

      A binding for each top – cut enough strips 2” or 2.5” wide for all four sides, or include an                  extra half-yard to ¾ yard fabric, depending on size of quilt.


3.   Hand in the top/back/binding at one of our meetings, preferably by December.  We need the tops in-hand in order to figure out what batting requirements are – we need to pre-measure.


4.   In an on-going process, the quilt tops are measured, marked, and checked.  Early in January, we figure out what the batting needs are, according to the sizes of quilts we have in hand.  When we have the batts, they are cut to the proper size and labeled for the Feb. tie-in.


5.   At the February meeting, the tops/backs/bindings are paired with the appropriate battings.  Thread and some needles are provided.  Members are asked to bring scissors, thimbles and preferred needles.  The quilts are laid out on the tables to be tied.


6.   At the end of the evening someone from the table that tied the quilt will take it home to bind it.  If no one at the table wants to bind the quilt, we ask that they grab the microphone and ask for volunteers.


7.   Bound quilts should be brought back as soon as possible, by the next meeting or at least by the end of the current year.


8.   When the bound quilts are brought back to a meeting, they will be immediately delivered to Northeast.


9.   Many members bring quilts during the year that are completely finished, tied, and bound.  This is very much appreciated, because it gives Northeast a steady supply; these quilts are delivered to Northeast each month as they come in, throughout the year.


10. When a quilt is chosen, a heart is embroidered with the child’s name and sewn to the back of the quilt.  At times, quilts will be given to kids without the heart being sewn on, if the agency sees a need.


I also have a list of the names of the persons who make all of the above happen.  I’ll print it in the newsletter before the next tie-in.





Do you know that there is a National Quilting Day?  This year, it is March 21, 2009, sponsored by the National Quilting Association.  The NQA has decided to devote National Quilting Day to the HOME.  In honor of the home, there is a special house block design  with directions and templates.  The free block link is available on the NQA website:


The National Quilting Association website is wonderful, housing great information and suggestions.  It also offers a block-of-the-month program with links to download the free patterns.



Our QUILT SHOW BOUTIQUE COMMITTEE for 2010 has created a way for us to donate to the Boutique.  They are graciously taking our donations to their cars after every meeting, and organizing them way ahead of time.  Now there is a reminder about bringing donations in the “What to bring” area of program information.




The Earliest known “quilt” is carved on an ivory figure of a pharaoh of the Egyptian First Dynasty circa 3400 B.C.



How do you store your membership card?  Is it in your wallet?  How can you be sure you have it with you when you arrive at a quilt meeting?  Here are two ideas:


Susan and Lois have “pinned” their cards to the back of their handmade name tags, and Virginia McGarry has made a little pocket on the back of her name tag. Let Lois know if you have another idea, and it will appear in the next newsletter.





            Taken from McCalls Quick Quilts, November 2005.


Did you know that One Fat Quarter Equals:


99     2 inch squares


56     2.5 inch squares                                            OR 42       3 inch squares OR

30     3.5 inch squares                                            OR 20       4 inch squares OR

16     4.5 inch squares                                            OR 12       5 inch squares OR

12     5.5 inch squares                                            OR  9        6 inch squares OR

  6     6.5 inch squares                                           


Credit given to Carolyn Reese in Montclair, CA



  Our friendship group's name is The KNV's which comes from members' 1st initials: 3 Kathy's (DelPrincipe, Hermance, & Wagner), plus Karen Scoloaro, Nina Whitney, Virginia McGarry & Vivian Davis. When Chris Powell joined the group, we jokingly asked her to change the spelling of her name to Kris!!.  We meet once a month on Mondays but not always on the same Monday - just a Monday when everyone is available.  We are in our 3rd year together as a group, starting (I think) in the summer of 2006. We pick our meeting dates months in advance & try to come up with dates that are good for everyone. Since some of the members still work full-time, our meetings are held @ 7pm and usually run until 9-9:30.  We can't accept new members because none of us have room at our dining room tables or living rooms to accommodate more than 8.


We tried initially having "working" meetings (cutting, sewing, ironing) to make quilts for Northeast, but realistically, with  7-8 women in small spaces, it's kind of difficult.  So now we usually tie quilts - someone almost always has a quilt to be tied.  Sometimes in lieu of tying, the hostess presents a demo.  We have had demos on paper piecing, pillowcases, & bindings.  We also have a Show N' Tell session, sharing any projects we're working on, any new quilt/sewing related purchases, news on quilt shows or trips, and just general conversation (of course, dessert is always included).  We also share our quilt problems & help each other resolve them.  We typically have one quilt project a year.  Someone will provide everyone with a pattern & ask if the members would be interested in making that quilt & we all agree on a deadline for completion.   We each make our own quilt & present them as a group at a guild meeting together during “Show N Tell.”


Another activity we began last year is our "Block of the Month" & it's quite popular with all of our members.  The meeting hostess provides each member with block directions along with her own specifications for making the block - size, colors, quantity, etc.  For example, the month when Karen hosted the meeting, she gave the ladies directions to make 6 scrappy pastel-colored blocks.  At the next month's meeting, Karen received a total of 42 9.5" blocks which she will assemble into a young girl's quilt for Northeast.


Each month's hostess is given a fat quarter (with a predetermined theme) by every member.  I am the unofficial secretary of the KNV's & I maintain the meeting schedule along with the hostess gift theme for each month.  We do not take minutes, but write down only important information that we don't want to forget.  The hostess for the month usually sends an email to the other members reminding them of the upcoming meeting.


Since we always have refreshments, any birthdays which occur during the month are recognized. It seems we have become as much a social club as we are a working group.  We have a lot of laughs and get some work done too.

Submitted by Kathy Hermance

Reach for the Stars


            Quilters United in Learning Together (Q.U.I.L.T.), Inc. of Delmar, New York announces its 2009 Quilt Show, “Reach for the Stars!”  The Quilt Show will be held April 18 and 19, 2009 at Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk High School, Route 9W, Ravena, N.Y.  The members of  QUILT will be displaying many large quilts, wearable art, and wall hangings, along with the display of the challenge quilts created and judged by the guild this year. 

            Events include nationally known crazy quilt artist Betty Pillsbury, who will be giving a gallery talk at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday.  Betty’s crazy quilt exhibit will showcase the use of embroidery on quilts.  There will also be a quilt raffle, vendors, quilt block challenge, a mini-mart, the guild boutique, and demonstrations. 

            Quilt appraisals will be available by appointment – please contact Kathie Greenwold at if you are interested in having an appointment.  A fashion show will be held on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.  The RCS Athletic Association will sponsor the food concession. 

            Proceeds from a silent auction of small quilted wall hangings, pillows, tote bags and purses will benefit the Alzheimer’s Association of Northeastern New York.  Admission is $6 for one day, and $8 for both days.  Hours are Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.  Contact information:  Show Chair Sharon Levanway (518) 945-2714, or






QUILTS Newsletter

2008 March Issue


Lois Bena

P.O. Box 55

Alplaus NY 12008