Quilt Show to Feature Award – Winning Designs

MOUNDSVILLE — Vintage quilts and award-winning quilts will be among the entries in the Seams Sew Snugly Quilt Guild’s fourth annual show this week.

The quilt show will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Moundsville Economic Development Center, 818 Jefferson Ave. Admission will be charged, but children under 12 will be admitted free of charge.

Susie Noble, guild co-founder and quilt coordinator, and Mary Margaret Rine, show coordinator, expect that 175 to 200 quilts will be displayed at this year’s event. Vendors, raffles and food also will be part of the show.

A quilt made in 1898 and a couple of quilts dating from the 1930s will be featured, along with a variety of traditional and modern quilts created by area residents and members of guilds.

“I want this quilt show to showcase that not only are we talented artists, we hold onto traditions, and if you are a first-generation quilter, you have friends who will help you figure out those designs and get help along the way,” Noble said.

Three of Noble’s own award-winning quilts and one of her newest creations will be shown. The Moundsville resident’s entries will include a Brazilian embroidery quilt, a garden quilt, a memories crazy quilt and a thread painting quilt.

Noble’s Brazilian embroidery quilt has been selected as a “people’s choice” winner in three competitions: a Marshall County Community Educational Outreach Service event, Seams Sew Snugly’s first show and most recently at the Mid-Ohio Valley Heritage Quilt Show, which was held at the Blennerhassett Museum near Parkersburg in March. The large work is hand-quilted and has approximately 400 handmade Brazilian roses.

“It’s all hand-done, hand-drawn,” Noble said about this exquisite quilt. “All of the roses are drawn free-hand. Each little petal is individually done.”

In addition, her colorful, cheerful garden quilt captured a second-place award at the Blennerhassett show.

Her crazy quilt received honorable mention in the Blennerhassett event and was named the “people’s choice” winner in the Marshall County CEOS show. Such works are called “crazy” because the individual pieces are cut in odd, non-uniform patterns.

Pointing to depictions of memories on the crazy quilt, she said, “This one is just my life story … (with) most of my favorite things.”

The memories quilt includes photographs of Noble’s husband, sons and parents, as well as pictures from her prom, charms that belonged to her grandmother and pieces of jewelry, including “my necklace when I was a little girl,” she said.

Other personal touches can be found on the piece’s hand-quilted backing. Noble stitched in her wedding date and her sons’ names, as well as symbols of holidays.

Visitors to this week’s show will have their first opportunity to see Noble’s new thread painting quilt. “I’ve never shown it before,” she said.

Alternating pieces of this quilt are decorated with images that she created by painting and drawing with thread.

Noble commented, “Some people quilt just for the love of being creative. For some it is a generational tradition, but for me it means I have the ability and opportunity to express my own creativity.

“I can pick any fabric, any combination, and I get to play and make it anything I want. No rules. I can create my own designs, my own color schemes and visualize what I would like to create,” she remarked.

Noble and her niece, Tonia Gonchoff of Moundsville, started the Seams Sew Snugly Quilt Guild four years ago to showcase this form of crafting. “We want to embrace the art of quilting,” she said.

A year after the group’s founding, the guild presented its first show at The Barn in Moundsville in 2016. Its next two shows were held at this year’s venue, the Moundsville Economic Development Center, which is located on the grounds of the former West Virginia Penitentiary.

Currently, the guild has 38 members, but the number is soon to be 42, with the addition of new participants anticipated, Noble said.

Noble made her first quilt in 1978. “It was a baby quilt with embroidered little animals,” she recalled.

Since that time, she has made thousands of quilts, donating many of them to charities for auctions and drawings. She has given quilts for fundraisers to benefit the Suzuki strings program in Marshall County and for her congregation, the Community of Christ Church in Bellaire.

“We quilters seem to make them and give them away,” she said, adding, “We make quilts to celebrate.”

The time it takes to create a coverlet varies according to many factors such as the complexity of the design and style of quilting. “It depends on the dynamics that goes into it,” she explained.

For example, Noble said it took “a good year” to complete the Brazilian embroidery quilt and a few months to finish the garden quilt. By contrast, she made the thread painting quilt in only one weekend.

The Seams Sew Snugly Quilt Guild’s events provide the public with opportunities to see that there are “so many dynamics and so many varieties of quilting,” she said.

The art of quilting, Noble said, “is something I don’t want to see die out.”

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