Pine Belt Quilters Blog

September Meeting with Betty Magee

We have been so busy this fall getting ready for the quilt show and holding the quilt show that regular activities have been pushed aside. This blog post will be brief and probably overlook items we usually cover. Our speaker at the September meeting was Betty Magee from Mendenhall, whose specialty is crazy quilts. Betty is a retired teacher who also trains and shows retrievers. She made her first crazy quilt about 10 years ago after admiring one her great-grandmother made in 1890. She collects all types of fabrics and enjoys mixing these for more interest, creating a new piece from old. Betty makes her quilts on squares of muslin foundation which is left in place. She begins with a center square or an irregular shape and machine sews bits of fabric in a circular fashion to create blocks; these blocks are joined into a larger piece and hand embroidery is added along the seam lines. 

Betty Magee

Betty Magee

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Some good news about one of our prolific quilters: Joe Bingham had two pieces accepted into the 2017 Hoffman Challenge. There were 22 friendship blocks (Hard Rock pattern) turned in, and Joe’s name was drawn. We received 56 pillows, nine preemie blankets, 30 walker totes and eight catheter bag covers. In spite of heavy quilt show preparations, our members are finding time to share their skills with others.

Snippets: Ellen Cox showed how to pull DMC floss from the numbered end of the skein to avoid tangling. She also told us that looking down the side of a spool of variegated thread rather than looking straight on the side will help see how the color will look when sewn.

August and ABCs of Good Design

Connie Hitt welcomed a large roomful of members and guests to our August meeting. Betty Allen’s  thought for the day encouraged those who suffer from depression to seek help that is available and spoke of the value of counting our blessings and finding comfort through  scripture.

Anne Hindmarch

Our member Anne Hindmarch presented an enlightening program on “The ABCs of Good Design,” describing how she adapts any pattern to the size she wants by using a variety of grids. She showed examples of these and how she uses graph paper to draw her designs. Anne relies on the color wheel in making color choices, saying that the easiest combinations are complimentary colors, those opposite on the color wheel (think of red and green, popular Christmas colors), and how these can be lightened to become tints and darkened to become shades while still in the selected color family.

Anne recommends prewashing fabrics to remove loose dye and chemicals and to take care of shrinkage. She advised checking the accuracy of your acrylic rulers, as well as carefully placing them on the fabric. She said, “Know your machine, keep it clean, and change your needle often. Look at nature for design inspiration.” She described the Fibonacci theory and how it can be seen in pine cones, shells, flowers. Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry’s quilts often employ this theory.

Dianne McLendon said she has a few more kits for the Travel Poster Challenge (due back in December), as well as Friendship Blocks (due in September). Mary Nell Magee encouraged us to continue to make Children’s Quilts to be given in December. She corrected the number of donated quilts at July meeting to 180 instead of the 160 reported.

Snippets: The team of Missy Lee, Ellen Cox, and Dianne McLendon showed a tutorial they had prepared on several ways to accurately cut half-square triangles. Thanks to these for using our camera, computer and projector to help us see demonstrations. Thanks also to Tina Dickens for filming and projecting our speakers so everyone in the room can see. Great use of our funds for education!


Ellie Gill and her students show their Over and Under quilts Ellie taught at the July workshop.

Quilt Show: So much to think about and talk about! Joe Bingham has agreed to prepare the Hanging Map. Thanks, Joe!

Ribbons: Dianne McLendon has made beautiful Dresden Plate circles to attach to our 1st, 2nd, 3rd and HM ribbons. We have discussed many times how to fairly recognize the maker and quilter on team entries and are planning to give double ribbons in team categories (not double prize money, only ribbons). As in the past, if the award is one of the special $250 awards specifically for quilting, the award/money goes to the quilter.

Judge: Our judge will be Diane (De) Leclair from San Antonio. She is a member of NACQJ (National Association of Certified Quilt Judges). She said in an email: “I will also be bringing a NACQJ Award of Merit with me. It is an award that I like to give to a quilt that has something very special about it–perhaps a technique, design, something special out of the ordinary. I will enclose a link to our site with a picture and explanation.” We hope to have De give a lecture after the judging that will be open to all our membership (probably Wednesday afternoon). More about that later.

Publicity/Raffle Tickets: We have 100 beautiful posters available today (thanks, Ellen Hall). Take these and post wherever you have a chance. Stacks of bookmarks are on each table. Hand one of these to everyone you see from now until show time. Be sure to sell your raffle quilt tickets. Every member is responsible for selling at least 20 tickets. You may purchase your own tickets; if you need more tickets, call Kaye Christensen.

Boutique: Continue to bring in items for the boutique. Shirley Wiltshire and Betty Bingham will bring any leftover boutique items from the storage building for sale.

Staffing: Barb Peters is in charge of staffing. She passed out slips our members could fill out for the shifts they can work. Everyone who works at least six hours during the Friday-Saturday-Sunday of the show is entitled to free admission. All others should purchase a ticket. Of course, we also need lots of help from Monday through Thursday for receiving quilts, judging and hanging the show.

Lectures: Here is the schedule of free lectures Margie Hancock has organized. Attend as many of these as you can (working around your duty schedule).






Jodi Barrows

Square in a Square (Never sew a triangle again)


Betty Reid

Quilts with Meaning


Ellie Gill

Batiks Trunk Show


Jodi Barrows

Trunk Show and History of Women and Their Quilts


Missy Lee

Fun and Done

4 :00

Alma Moates

Quilt Appraising





Jodi Barrows

Square in a Square (Never sew a triangle again)


Judy Spiers

Mini Quilts


Anne Hindmarch

Using the Color Wheel to Design Quilts


Jodi Barrows

Trunk Show and History of Women and Their Quilts


Cheryl Owens and Teresa Pino

Traditional to Contemporary Quilting


Judy Momenzadeh and Mary Felder

Personal Stories; Gelatin Plate/Screen Printing





Betty Moore

Machine Embroidery


Betty Allen

Hand and Machine Applique


In the news:

After 47 years of publication, Quilters Newsletter magazine will go out of business after its October/November issue.

Machine Quilters Showcase and the International Machine Quilters Association voted to dissolve both these organizations.

AQS will cease publishing quilting books.

Michael’s is purchasing Hancock’s inventory.

Jo-Ann’s is moving into the Hattiesburg Hancock location.

Donating Quilts in July

160 quilts ready to give

Connie Hitt welcomed several visitors and a new member to our July meeting and we all joined in singing “God Bless America.” Betty Allen gave the thought for the day, reminding us of many things that are wonderful about our lives and our country.

Quilt Show: Martha Ginn reminded the group about the August 1 deadline for discounted entry fee and encouraged members to get their entries in. Last show’s sponsors and businesses with ads in the catalog have been contacted. Suzannah Patterson has sent press releases to 98 newspapers around the state, and we will take pictures today of groups in front of the raffle quilt for hometown newspapers. Watch for these photos and bring in a copy for our Publicity Committee.

Beth McDaniel

Beth McDaniel

We finance our show through ticket sales on the raffle quilt, sales in the boutique, and contributions from the community. If you know of someone who would like to be a sponsor or advertise in our show catalog, be sure to pass this information on to Martha. Ellen Hall prepares the entry descriptions, and Linda Flanders does an outstanding job of preparing the catalog, and we want to give them as much time as we can for this huge undertaking. 

bookmark-finalThe Lucky Rabbit, a craft fair on Mobile Street in downtown Hattiesburg, draws about 4,000 people on the weekends it is open, we have been told. The LR is open four days each month beginning the first Thursday of the month–which means in October it is open the same weekend as our quilt show. We hope to get some posters and other publicity there to help direct people to our show. Our bookmarks are a big hit and are being distributed by our members and sent to shops all over the state. Be sure to take a handful of these and pass them out freely!

Charitable activities: Today we received 24 preemie blankets, 10 mother’s scent pads, 14 pillows, 16 walker totes, and 8 catheter bag covers. We appreciate all the ongoing volunteer work done by our caring members.

Parade of Children’s Quilts: The main event of today’s meeting was the parade of quilts and distribution of completed quilts to various agencies in our area. Many members work all year on children’s quilts, and these in the “parade” give us a chance to highlight and vote on a favorite. Only five were in the parade, but judging by the tables laden with approximately 160 quilts, it is obvious that our members have been generous. 2016-July-Parade

1st Betty Allen, 2nd Missy Lee, 3rd Anne Esteve

1st Betty Allen, 2nd Missy Lee, 3rd Anne Esteve

Annie Jackson from South Mississippi Children’s Center described the work they do in taking care of children who have to be removed from their home. This can be from a few days to a couple of months, and all children are given a PBQ quilt to take when they leave the shelter. Annie said some come with their belongings in a plastic bag. The shelter is trying to collect small suitcases, back packs and gym bags so that each child can leave with their clothes in something more permanent. We can help with this effort! Look through your closets.

Riley Herrin from Shafer Center for Crisis Intervention told about counseling a young Spanish-speaking victim and her family and the difficulty and confusion of working through an interpreter. But when the girl was allowed to chose a quilt to be her very own, the language barrier seemed to be lifted and smiles were finally seen. 2016-July  RileyHerrin-AJackson

Leigh Ann Leonard (from Forrest General) and Joan Harper (volunteer at Merit Health-Wesley) accepted quilts for these two hospitals. Leigh Ann described how touching it had been recently for her own son to be the recipient of a quilt. Representatives from the fire department were unable to attend, but some quilts were saved for them. We gave about 160 quilts and also sent some to the Ronald McDonald House in Jackson.2016-July LALeonard-AJackson]

Each of our guests stressed how meaningful these quilts had been to the recipients, who often found it amazing that PBQ would make these for people they don’t even know. There were quite a few tears and sniffles evident, and I think we all felt good about the joy that PBQ can bring. Thanks to Mary Nell for heading up the CQ group, as well as those who come to the workdays and work on these projects at home.


We enjoyed a delicious barbeque lunch catered by Stonewall’s Barbeque. Thanks to our members who brought desserts.

Hard Rock

Hard Rock

Dianne McLendon introduced the Friendship Block called Hard Rock (pictured here); it will be due back in September.

She also reminded us to be working on our Travel Poster Challenge, which is due in December.

Snippets: Ellen Cox showed a video she had prepared which helps to eliminate bulk at the corners of our bindings.

PBQ will host the Hattiesburg section of the 2016 MQA Educational Seminar taught by Mickey Depre on Friday and Saturday, July 22 and 23. The classes are Summer Carnival and Pieced Hexies Buffet.

Paper Piecing with Gloria Green

June-GloriaGreen (7)-rsz

Gloria’s quilt “John’s Floral Fantasy”

After president Connie Hitt welcomed the group, which included several visitors and two new members, Elvia Edwards gave the thought for the day.

Gloria Green presented our program on Paper Piecing, also called Foundation Piecing. She related that this is a very old technique and that our mothers and grandmothers used newspapers, telephone books, Sears catalogs, and fabric as foundations. The paper foundations were meant to be removed, but many antique quilts have been dated by the bits of paper found sewn beneath the quilt top. Dixie Haywood and Jane Hall, the authors of eight books, are considered masters of foundation piecing, and they present several different methods, some with foundation on the back and some with foundation on the front (for greater accuracy). Gloria recommended their books for beginners and experienced quilters. Instead of using paper (which has to be picked out), Gloria recommends a thin fabric-like product used for covering aisles in a church for a wedding. It comes on a large roll about 30” wide (called “bridal aisle”) and can be found in the wedding accessories section at Hobby Lobby . June-GloriaGreen (4)-rsz

Foundation piecing allows one to piece very accurately whether the pattern is a simple one or very difficult. Gloria said Judy Niemeyer’s quilt designs (found online at are good examples of difficult patterns. Gloria had her first class with Judy Niemeyer several years ago at a GSQA seminar and had a dream of one day attending a week-long retreat to create another of Niemeyer’s designs. Last October Gloria did just that in Kalispell, Montana, staying at the retreat center overlooking Flathead Valley. She spent three weeks cutting her fabric in preparation for the week of sewing. She showed slides of the facility and the progress she made on her quilt.


Carol Doak pattern for workshop

Gloria will lead the paper piecing workshop on June 22, making four blocks of a Carol Doak pattern for a wall hanging.  She encouraged us to attend shows and classes and to take advantage of any seminar or retreat we can to inspire us and improve our skills.

We hate to lose Gloria when she moves to Madison the end of this month. She has been a valued member of our guild, serving as president, quilt show chair, board member, as well as being willing to help in many capacities, such as today’s program and the workshop following. We honored her with a cake and small gift to show our appreciation.

June-GloriaGreen (2)-rszAfter Gloria’s program we shopped at our annual Treasure Hunt. This was a great way for some to clean out overflowing closets and pass on fabric and notions to others who were happy to take these things home for their own closets! In addition to pocket money for members and taking in money for the guild, we added quite a few items to our storage unit that will be brought back out for the Boutique at the quilt show. We were reminded of the MQA June Gathering coming up June 17-18 in Jackson and that it is not too late to sign up by going to the June 2016 newsletter on MQA’s website:

Quilt Show: Martha Ginn showed the new bookmarks we have ordered and invited members to take as many as they were willing to and to pass them out everywhere they went. People love using the bookmarks and appreciate being told “this is your personal invitation to our show. Save this and mark your calendar.” The bookmarks show our entire raffle quilt with all the show information on one side and a detail shot of a section of the quilt on the reverse. They should encourage people to want to buy tickets. Speaking of selling tickets, several of our members took the quilt to the Blueberry Jubilee in Poplarville June 11 and sold tickets before a little rainstorm interrupted them for a while. It will also be on display in Jackson July 17-18 at the MQA June Workshop Gathering. Tickets are selling well. Contact Kaye Christensen for more when you run out.


bookmark-finalWe will be taking pictures of groups of quilters in front of the raffle quilt at the July meeting to be sent to hometown newspapers. Suzannah Patterson will be organizing this; be sure to gather with your local group when asked.

Remember our early entry deadline for a $3.00 discount is August 1. The firm deadline for all quilts is August 15. See the website for all other information. We need ads for our show catalog. Rates are $50 for a quarter-page; $100 for a half-page; $150 for a full page. Send the information to Martha or request that she contact.

Charitable activities: Today we took in 30 children’s quilts, 34 pillows, 13 preemie blankets, 20 scent pads, 15 walker totes, and 9 catheter covers.  We will have the Parade of Children’s Quilts at the July meeting and donate our supply of quilts to several agencies. Be sure to bring any Children’s Quilts you have finished.

July Barbeque Lunch catered by Stonewall Barbeque. Make your reservation with Connie Hitt; cost is $8.00. Menu is choice of pulled pork or barbeque chicken, with baked beans, potato salad, and coleslaw. Several members volunteered to bring dessert.

Snippets: Ellen Cox said Super Glue is the perfect remedy for cut fingers!  You know how easily you can get a little slice with your rotary cutter that hurts for days? If you seal it with Super Glue, it will heal quickly and you can remove the SG with fingernail polish remover.

Congratulations to Betty Reid for designing the Row by Row pattern, “Mississippi Magnolia,” for Let’s Make Something, in Laurel. The pattern is free (kit $12) and features raw-edge appliqué, fusible appliqué, and needleturn appliqué. A second Row by Row pattern, “Home Sweet Home,” is available with purchase of a $9 kit at the shop (located at 1317 Hwy 15 North, Suite E, Laurel).

Betty Reid's Row by Row Pattern

Betty Reid (left) and her Row by Row Pattern, “Mississippi Magnolia,” with Melissa Holman (right) of Laurel

Home Sweet Home Row By Row

“Home Sweet Home” Row By Row

May–Cindy Pannier with Scrap Quilts

President Connie Hitt welcomed a full room of quilters, with a couple of visitors and a new member. Margie Hancock and Martha Ginn read “Sometimes Quilts Need to Talk, Too,” which pointed out that a quilt’s bringing comfort rather than being in a show or winning a ribbon was a good outcome for a quilt.

Cindy Pannier's Japanese Lanterns

Cindy Pannier’s Japanese Lanterns

Our speaker was Cindy Pannier, from Brandon, who shared her love of scraps and scrap quilts. She told us how she looks on scraps as resources, just as much as yardage. She recommended when there was very little of a piece of fabric left cutting it into specific sizes of scraps to save for future projects, adding that these cut bits take up less room than large pieces. Her favorite book with valuable instruction on how best to cut and use scraps is Cut the Scraps! by Joan Ford. Joan utilizes Layer Cakes and fat quarters and cuts fabric into 5”, 3-1/2” and 2” strips. Cindy said if we analyze our fabrics, we will find that they are 10% darks, 10% lights, and 80% mediums, so when shopping try to add more darks and lights.

Scrap quilts can benefit from a unifying fabric for background or border. After making this Japanese Lanterns quilt, Cindy bordered it with orphan blocks left from many classes and projects.

CindyPannier5 The quilt on the right is made from 5-1/2” squares with diagonal strips. Swapping strips with friends can add much more interest and variety to our scrap quilts.

Cindy will teach a scrap quilt workshop May 25 in Choral Hall; participants need to preregister and bring 100 5” squares divided into 10 plastic bags to exchange with others. Each bag needs to contain 10 different fabrics.


Connie read thank-you notes from a recipient of one of our Children’s Quilts at Merit Health-Wesley and from DAFS, as well as two members. We were happy to hear cancer-free reports from Anne Esteve and Kaye Christensen.

Travel Poster Challenge: Dianne McLendon passed out the fabrics we are to incorporate in our Challenge piece. These are due at the December meeting. See Guild Activities/Travel Poster Challenge for all instructions.

Snippets: Ellen Cox gave us a suggestion to cut down on mismatched orphan blocks. She recommended that we prepare a “workshop toolbox” containing some basic sewing supplies as well as these fabrics: a focus fabric, print, stripe, plaid, light and dark. If you use these same fabrics for each class, you are more likely to have a set of blocks that will coordinate and can be used for a project later. Sounds like a great idea!

Charitable Activities: Today we received 83 pillows (thanks, Josette, for making 60); 20 preemie blankets, 10 mother scent pads; 22 walker totes, and 20 catheter bag covers.

Raffle Quilt/Blueberry Jubilee: Kay Christensen reported she has distributed 4,000 tickets and received back 912 sold. We usually sell lots of tickets at the Blueberry Jubilee in Poplarville and need people to sign up to help, particularly in the afternoon. The date is Saturday, June 11, and there will be a shade tent and access to Shirley’s air conditioning and restroom. This is a popular festival with arts and crafts, entertainment, and fresh blueberries. Sign up at the June meeting or call Mary Nell Magee.

Notice our raffle quilt in the background of the two pictures above. Do your friends a favor by inviting them to buy tickets!

The June program and workshop will be on paper piecing by Gloria Green. It is also the time for our Treasure Hunt. This is when you may bring anything you want to sell. Price your items and have your name on an envelope or stand nearby. Place your items on the tables around the walls; the sale will take place after the program.

July is our Parade of Children’s Quilts and give away. We hope to have lots of new quilts to show and add to the ones ready to give.

April–Quilt Appraisals and New Challenge

Alma Moates, AQS certified appraiser

Alma Moates, AQS certified appraiser

President Connie Hitt welcomed us to our April meeting. After a delightful poem read by Anne Hindmarch about the woes of a quilter’s husband, Susie Jackson introduced our speaker, certified appraiser Alma Moates from Pensacola. Alma has collected antique and new quilts for 40 years. This love of quilts led her to attending appraisal classes by the American Quilters Society in Paducah, Kentucky; she then applied for testing and successfully passed stringent written and oral exams to become an AQS Certified Appraiser of Quilted Textiles in 2008. She continues to take classes to keep abreast of new techniques and advances in the quilt world.

Alma stressed the importance of having our quilts appraised in order to receive adequate compensation on a possible insurance claim. Generally, without this documentation our quilts would only be included as household items and not recognized for their true value. Many factors go into determining the value of a quilt, uppermost being (1) condition, followed by (2) workmanship, quality of fabric and colorfastness, (3) visual appeal, (4) rarity, and (5) technique/regular or unusual.  She showed many quilts and tops and pointed out these characteristics.

She will be at our show in October to appraise quilts. See the Appraisal tab under Quilt Show on our website for more information.2016 Travel Poster Challenge

New Challenge: Dianne McLendon introduced our new challenge: “You’ve Got the Whole World In Your Hands,” which could also be called the “Travel Poster Quilt Challenge.” With our quilt show coming up, making a wall quilt rather than a bed-sized quilt seems best! Here are the rules:

Theme: Where would you like to go? Or where have you been that you loved? Depict this place (whether specific or generalized) in the center body of the quilt. Add a 4” border made of blocks which relate to this place. No words, numbers, phrases or text allowed. Here are some examples to get you thinking about blocks to carry out your place or theme:

Place/Theme (center) Block (4” border)
National Park or Forest Tree
Rivers Crossing Canoes
Seas/Oceans Ocean Waves or Sail Boat
London King’s X
Holland Pinwheel
Orient Fans
Houses Log Cabin

Size:  Inside body:  minimum 18” on any side, maximum 36” on any side PLUS a 4” pieced border. This pieced border should be blocks which help identify the place you are depicting.

Fabrics: You will be given three pieces of fabric which must be incorporated; add any others you wish. Fee is $5.00. Money prizes will be awarded for viewers’ choice voting.

Deadline: The reveal will be at the December meeting.

Charitable Activities: Mary Nell Magee reminded us of our first Tuesday CQ workdays and that there are kits for anyone to take home to complete. Our next quilt give-away is at our July meeting.

Joe Bingham announced we received 34 pillows, 17 blankets, 20 mother pads; Betty Herring reported receiving 12 walker totes and six catheter bag covers.

Delectable Star, due back June 8, 2016

Delectable Star, due back June 8, 2016

Friendship Block: The new friendship block is Delectable Star. It is due back at the June meeting.

Quilt Show: Martha Ginn reminded the group that it is not too early to begin turning in your entries for the quilt show. Information pages and entry forms will be available at each meeting if you don’t print from the website. Paula Jones has a good photo of the raffle quilt. Also, you can take a good picture with your cell phone so you will always have it available to show as you sell your tickets. Be thinking of where you do business frequently. Some of these individuals or companies might be happy to place an ad in our show catalog. Rates are: 1/4 page (business card) = $50.00; half page = $100.00; full page = $150.00. Martha can send information, but it helps if you make a first contact.

Yahoo Group: We have 59 members in the Yahoo email group. This is an easy way to communicate with each other. If you have not accepted the invitation that was sent to your email address, please do this; all you need is a Yahoo ID (not a Yahoo email address, but a Yahoo ID). Once you are a member, to send a message to everyone, just email to Moderators are Elvia Edwards, Ellen Hall, and Martha Ginn. Email any of these three if you want to join.

Snippets: Last month Ellen Cox recommended Goo Gone; today she told us about another product she says works even better:  Grandma’s Secret Goo Remover.  Another tip came from Ellen Hall. For help arranging blocks when pinning to the design wall and moving them about is your usual way, try pinning all and photographing the group, printing full page size. Then cut the photo blocks apart and work with these little squares.

Joe and Betty Bingham will teach pieced placemats or table runner at the 4th Wednesday workshop, April 27. Contact one of them if you did not sign up at the meeting.

Member News: Congratulations to our farthest-out-of-town member, Leslie Kiger, for her Best of Show win at the Gulf States Quilting Association show April 8-9 in Slidell, LA. Her quilt won first place in its category (Med/Large Pieced–Judy Niemeyer Pattern) and Best of Show.

"Mad Dash" by Leslie Kiger, quilted by Lori Millsap

“Mad Dash” by Leslie Kiger, quilted by Lori Millsap

March–Shapely Challenge Reveal

Gloria Green gave us some pearls of wisdom to begin our March meeting:

Gloria Green

Gloria Green

If a dog was your teacher, you would learn stuff like:

When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.

When it’s in your best interest, practice obedience.

Let others know when they’ve invaded your territory.

Take naps.

Stretch before rising.

Run, romp, and play daily.

Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.

On hot days, drink lots of water, and lie under a shady tree.

When you’re happy, dance around, and wag your entire body.

Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.

Eat with gusto and enthusiasm. Stop when you’ve had enough.

Be loyal. Never pretend to be something you’re not.

When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and nuzzle them gently.

Our program, “Finishing the Edges,” was provided by Ellen Cox, Dianne McLendon, Elvia Edwards, Anne Hindmarch, and Susie Jackson. Ellen showed how to create a scalloped flange. Dianne discussed how to apply binding to edges that are not 90-degree angles, such as on hexagons. Her pictures helped to see the necessity of stopping at the marked point and accurately folding back the binding to create neat bindings. She also showed how to make continuous line and regular prairie points to finish a quilt.


Ellen Cox


Non-90-degree angle


Elvia Edwards


Anne Hindmarch

Elvia’s examples were of double-sided binding, where the front and back could be matched with binding. Anne demonstrated how a faux flange could be created by cutting the flange piece 1/4″ wider than the binding piece–which can mimic piping.

Scalloped edge

Scalloped edge

Susie showed how to create a scalloped edge by folding a narrow strip of paper (such as adding machine tape) and marking partial circles using plastic lids.

The Reveal:

At last–the reveal of the Shapely Challenge quilts. What an impressive display of quilts we saw! Twenty members had completed their challenges, and several others will show theirs later when they are finished. Go to the Shapely Challenge tab under Guild Activities to see all 20 of the quilts. Here are the three winners:

1st place--Ellen Cox

1st place–Ellen Cox


2nd place--Martha Ginn

2nd place–Martha Ginn


3rd place--Sharon Barnes

3rd place–Sharon Barnes

Charitable Activities:

Mary Nell Magee announced that 30 children’s quilts had been turned in today, with special thanks to Joe Bingham, who made 18 of these. She reminded us that there are kits we can take home to finish if we cannot attend the first Tuesday workdays. We received 14 pillows, 11 preemie blankets, 10 mother pads, 12 walker totes, and six catheter bag covers. Members are encouraged to continue making these much-needed gifts.

Missy Lee won the Flower Pops friendship blocks.

Quilt Show:

Quilt show plans were discussed, and members received their Handbooks, raffle tickets, and membership cards. The raffle quilt, Autumn Splendor, was hanging for us to enjoy. Special thanks go to Susie Jackson and Linda Flanders for the designing, organizing, quilting and overseeing the construction of this masterpiece. All members are responsible for selling AT LEAST 20 tickets on this quilt. Martha Ginn will have printed forms available at each meeting for anyone who cannot access these on the website. Remember, August 1 is the date for early registration discount.

Next Meeting: Alma Moates, AQS Certified Appraiser from Pensacola, will be our guest speaker. She will present a trunk show and discuss the importance of having our quilts appraised.

Thanks to Paula Jones for the photo of our raffle quilt “Autumn Splendor.”

Autumn Splendor

February Meeting: Drafting a Pattern

PatternDraftingBetty Allen gave an inspiring Thought for the Day. Our February program was presented by Linda Flanders on the topic “Drafting a Pattern.” We may be skilled in sewing our blocks and making beautiful quilts, but knowing how to draft your own pattern can open up all kinds of interesting possibilities. When you find a pattern for a 12″ block but you really want to make yours 8″ or 15″ (or any other size), you don’t have to give up and settle for 12″ blocks. Making a 12″ block on a 7-patch or 5-patch grid requires drafting, and some of us did this on our Shapely Challenge blocks.

Linda2 Linda1

Linda highly recommended Jinny Beyer’s book, The Quilter’s Album of Blocks & Borders, published in 1984 and a real treasure for a quilter’s library. Additionally, drafting your own blocks can increase accuracy. Although drafting sounds complicated and puzzling, Linda showed us some simple graph paper and ruler methods for taking the mystery out of it.This is much easier to do than to describe, and Linda’s workshop on February 24 will make her demonstrations very clear.

Linda-grids Linda-JBeyerbk

Shirley Wiltshire reminded us all of the Big Pink Scrap Box that will be at every meeting until the show. We are to bring our 100% cotton scraps that are at least 2″ x 4″ for the box. They can be larger, but must be 2″ x 4″ minimum. Shoppers will be able to buy these for $1.00 a quart-size bag in the Boutique. Mary Nell Magee led the boutique group in making Iron Tote/Pressing Pads last week. Unbuttoned, the tote is a pressing pad. Buttoned, it is for transporting an iron while it is still hot from a workshop.

iron tote

Charitable activities: Today we had 13 children’s quilts turned in, 44 pillows, 10 mother’s pads, 10 blankets, 12 walker totes, and six catheter bag covers. Mary Nell always has some “quilt kits” (top, batting, backing, binding) ready for quilters to take home and complete for Children’s Quilts. If you can’t attend regular CQ workdays on the first Tuesdays, here is a way to help.

Betty Bingham announced she had purchased for the library the book, Leaving Gee’s Bend, a historical fiction book by Irene Latham she told us about last meeting.

Quilt Show: Martha Ginn gave a quilt show report and called for committee members to stay for a brief meeting. We have mailed out “Save the Date” cards and will take them to the MQA meeting in Oxford this weekend. The raffle quilt Autumn Spice should be finished by the March meeting and tickets will be printed for us to sell. Reminder–each member is responsible for at least 20 tickets. This quilt will be so beautiful that the tickets should be easy to sell! The Information Page, Categories, Entry Form, and Off-Site Check-In page are all on the website under the Quilt Show tab. We can go ahead and be preparing our entries for anything that is already completed, rather than rushing at the last minute. Remember, there is a $3 per quilt discount for early entry. Entry Deadline is August 15; early entry discount deadline is August 1. We will have forms available at the next meeting.

Snippets: Ellen Cox showed several children’s quilts made with some easy instructions using 5″ and 10″ squares and a sew and fold method. Instructions and video can be found here:

Ellen-easyqlt3 Ellen-easyqlt1
Ellen-easyqlt2 Ellen-easy

Betty Reid showed her pressing board made from two joined cardboard fabric tubes covered with batting and insulated fabric. These can be folded and stored in a pillowcase for taking to workshops. BettyReid

Next meeting: Our March 9 meeting will be the big Reveal of the Shapely Challenge quilts. Your quilt must be completed with a label to be part of the Viewers’ Choice voting. We would enjoy seeing your beginning fat quarters you drew. Be sure to bring pieces of these if you have any left. The program will be “Finishing the Edge” by Ellen Cox, Elvia Edwards, Susie Jackson, and Dianne McLendon. The Flower Pop friendship blocks are also due. Workshop for March will be by Joan Alliston teaching the “Homestead” block, a Laundry Basket Quilts pattern.

Gee’s Bend Quilters at January Meeting

We started 2016 off with a good crowd of members and about a dozen visitors. Our new president, Connie Hitt, welcomed all, and Barb Peters gave the thought for the day. Martha Ginn introduced our speakers, Mary Ann Pettway and China Pettway, quilters from the Gee’s Bend Collective from Boykin, Alabama.

Mary Ann Pettway

Mary Ann Pettway

China Pettway

China Pettway

Gee’s Bend is a small black community made up primarily of descendants of slaves who remained in this isolated region, virtually cut off from the outside world through geography and poverty. There was little contact with the outside world because of their location in the bend of the Alabama River, sometimes without a ferry operating to the mainland. Throughout the years the residents made quilts for warmth from pieces of worn-out clothing, employing a free-form style of hand stitching and quilting into bold and colorful designs of their own choosing. Their quilts were primitive and colorful, usually in strips without the benefit of patterns and books, and the craft was passed down in families. In the late 1990s, the quilts were discovered by collectors who saw artistic beauty in them, resulting in an exhibit at the Houston Museum of Art, followed by an exhibit at the Whitney Museum of Art in New York. A book was produced, a PBS documentary, and much publicity followed.

Mary Ann Pettway, seventh of 12 children, told of her love of singing and of quilting, saying “It’s not all about the quilts–it’s about Jesus.” She made her first quilt in 2005 after learning about the trips other quilters were making with a singing group. She began to be the manager of the collective in 2006 and helps other quilters have an outlet for selling their work. Some meet and work together; others work at home and bring in their pieces. All the quilting is done by hand.

China Pettway told of a hard life growing up in a family of 13 children who often went to bed hungry and woke up hungry. They picked cotton, raised vegetables, carried water from a spring up a hill to their house. She said they didn’t have adequate clothes and shoes and were often kept at home because of this. But she had such a hunger for education that she would sneak out the back door of the house and catch the school bus when she heard it coming. In spite of the poverty and isolation of a small community, both Mary Ann and China expressed deep gratitude to God for their blessings, saying they were happy and joyful.

Both women shared their deep religious faith as they sang: “I don’t want nobody to praise me when I’m gone; Give me my flowers while I yet live” and “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot.”

China and Mary Ann Pettway singing

China and Mary Ann Pettway singing

We helped them hold up and display some of their pieces, and at the break people got a closer look by handling the pieces on the table.

Jan-Gee-1 Jan-Gee-2 Jan-ViewGeesBend

Dianne McLendon called on everyone who had written a resolution in January of 2015 to report on their progress or lack thereof as she read the list. Many of the goals set had been reached. She introduced the Friendship Block, called Flower Pops, due in March, and gave kits to those wanting them.


Charitable Projects: We received 15 pillows, 17 small blankets, 18 scent pads, 22 walker totes, and six catheter covers. Mary Nell Magee reported that 10 children’s quilts had been turned in today and reminded us that kits with partially done quilts were available for quilters to take home and complete. After donating 160 quilts last month, we need to replenish our inventory.

Martha Ginn returned the quilts that were a part of the Tasha Tudor exhibit in downtown Hattiesburg and expressed the thanks and compliments of The Oddfellows Gallery for the display of the quilts. We heard that the quilts were a big hit and a marvelous addition to the Tasha Tudor artwork.

Workshop: Martha will teach the 4th Wednesday workshop (January 27th) on Color Bars: Free-Form Quiltmaking. She showed examples and had supply lists prepared.

Quilt Show October 7-8-9: Much early work has been done; the Information Page, Entry Form, and Categories are all available on the website under the Quilt Show tab. We will have printed copies at later meetings. The raffle quilt, Autumn Splendor, is well underway and should be completed by the February meeting for us to see. Kaye Christiansen has agreed to handle ticket sales; you will be hearing more soon. Remember, each member is responsible for at least 20 tickets. Many sell a hundred or more. It is quite easy–anyone who sees a picture is willing to buy tickets. We just have to show them! We have been told we will be able to have the Lakeview Room for judging. This will greatly help us move the schedule along, as well as reduce time quilts are held in bags during staging. Be thinking about what you will enter, and remember, there is a $3.00 discount per quilt for early entry. This will help us get our detailed catalog prepared.

We still need help in several areas, particularly preparing a hanging map. We will need everyone during the week of the show, so be sure to mark your calendars. We have to be out of Lake Terrace by 5:00 each day of preparation, by 7:00 the days of the show.

Membership Directory: Will be available at the February 10 regular meeting. Program for February is Pattern Drafting by Linda Flanders. Linda will also teach the 4th Wednesday workshop on Pattern Drafting two weeks later, on February 24.

Boutique: No boutique meeting in January. The February meeting will be on Thursday, February 4 in Choral Hall (note early date). Mary Nell Magee will lead the project for making an Ironing Tote/Pressing Pad. You can make one for yourself and one to sell in the boutique. A Supply list is on the website under the Guild Activities tab.

Courtesy Chair: Judy Byrd is the new courtesy chair. Please let her know of illness or special needs for a card from the group: 601-784-3049.


December Luncheon & Giving Quilts

Paula Jones and Helen Thornton led us in singing Joy to the World to open our December meeting. Our incoming president, Connie Hitt, entertained us by singing a quilters’ paraphrase of 12 Days of Christmas.

Connie Hitt

Connie Hitt singing

We traditionally make a quilt for our outgoing president; since Susie Jackson she has so little time for piecing, she requested we give her blocks of various sizes in earthtones and let her complete her quilt. Betty Allen collected these blocks and displayed them pinned to a sheet background. We are eager to see what masterpiece Susie will make of this interesting collection.

Blocks for Susie Jackson

Blocks for Susie Jackson


Mug Rugs

We exchanged mug rugs and were amazed at the clever creations! Everyone who made one received one chosen by random drawing.

We enjoyed sharing quilts and other gifts at this December meeting. We gave 160 children’s quilts to six agencies and two long tables covered with gifts for mothers and children at Domestic Abuse Family Shelter. Their new director, Sarah Holifield, accepted these gifts. In addition to the ones pictured below, we sent quilts to the Columbia Fire Department to be given to victims of the recent tornado there.

We meet all year and make children’s quilts, but no one works as hard and joyfully as our member Joe Bingham. He made 121 quilts and completed 40 more from tops turned in by others.

Leigh Ann Leonard, Forrest General

Leigh Ann Leonard, Forrest General

Joan Harper, Merit Health-Wesley

Joan Harper, Merit Health-Wesley

Riley Herrin and Ashton Thompson, Shafer Center

Riley Herrin and Ashton Thompson, Shafer Center

Shekera Smith, South MS Children's Center

Shekera Smith, South MS Children’s Center

Robert Hall, Marcus Smith, and Seth Barham, Hattiesburg Fire Department

Robert Hall, Marcus Smith, and Seth Barham, Hattiesburg Fire Department

Sarah Holifield, DAFS

Sarah Holifield, DAFS

After a delicious meal catered by Seasoned with Love, we had door prizes, Snippets, fat quarter drawing, and Show & Tell. Several quilts had been completed using the Bingo blocks from our last meeting.

Quilts made from Bingo Blocks

Quilts made from Bingo Blocks

Looking forward to another great year led by new officers Connie Hitt, president; Susie Jackson, vice president; Missy Lee, treasurer; Linda Flanders, secretary/newsletter; and Ellen Hall, secretary/membership. At our January 13 meeting we look forward to hearing speakers Mary Ann Pettway and China Pettway from the Gee’s Bend Quilters.

Quilt show coming October 7-8-9, 2016! It will be our 16th Biennial! Save the date.