Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Off to the Festival of Quilts

Hello all,
It's nearly time for Festival of Quilts. I am launching the Modern Group there for the Quilters' Guild of Great Britain

I have made a hand-out leaflet, run around madly finishing quilts, am writing patterns, and I'm trying to get everything together while simultaneously trying not to melt and to run my business.

I am fond of The Quilters' Guild, in spite of its funny little ways.. because I respect the work of so many of its supporters; because I was made welcome at my first AGM; because I am a teacher and a quilter and I want there to be a national organisation that will support quilting and patchwork and all the related stuff..

On the other hand, it can be bureaucratic, stolid, and a bit inclined to form-not-function..

And I worry about the demographic - the members are on the whole older than the people I teach, and the younger students do not join "because it's a bit stuffy" or because they don't want to be asked to volunteer too much - they have lives after all.. Many of the older ones are beginning to drop out because they see that travelling and attending events is almost beyond them.

At every AGM I have attended, I have asked "What is the Guild doing to attract younger people, to reach out to the young mums who are just beginning to sew, to appeal to a newer audience?"  And every time I have had no answer.

So, I see the Modern Quilting movement coming into being, and my heart sings - here is something to bring in the next generation, to ensure that there will be people sewing in a year or ten years or twenty or thirty years time, and possibly wanting to be part of an organisation that seems to care, that has skills, and that holds things together.. Teach their children, perhaps, too

Now, the Modern group technically does not exist until this coming weekend, and no-one has a membership (not even me!), but I'm expected to make a Rota of helpers for my little table on the Guild stand, and provide names, times, pack drill.. Oh, I don't mind sitting on the stand myself, and Heather will be with me, and lots of you have already offered to "drop by" and allow a tea-break or whatever is needed.  And I'm grateful.. But I have to provide a few more names..

So,  if you're going to be at FOQ, let me know.. I wantto meet you, say hello, explain, show what we're on about.
If you've already offered you're in, much obliged..
There will be a joiners' prize, and free stuff online, and nice things  to look at
Helen Howes

Co-ordinator, Modern Quilt Group

Quilt is Broken Heart - a class sample for my new class on Disconnected Log Cabin blocks..