HUMBOLDT — Quilting is a way to socialize, uphold the traditions of the past, create some art and contribute to charities.
The Humboldt-based Prairie Patchworkers Quilt Guild aims to help its members achieve all of those items.
“We get together for fellowship, we get together to learn from each other, keeping the art of quilting going,” said Maria Leonard, the co-president of the guild.
For Leonard, one of the reasons why promoting interest in quilting is important is the heritage aspect.
“I think it's important to recognize some of what our foremothers have done and trying to carry on some of the traditions,” she said.
At the same time, the art of quilting can develop in new ways.
“The pieces that some people make, it's like you're looking at a painting,” Leonard said. “It’s a piece of art.”
Much of the guild’s efforts goes towards charity. They’ve produced charity quilts for The Elizabeth, St. Mary’s Villa, the Community Gathering Place and the Newcomer Centre.
Leonard said in some cases, they hope the organizations they’ve donated quilts to can earn a bit of money by doing things like raffling the quilt off.
“We're trying to support the organizations in the community that can perhaps get ahead a little bit that way.”
The bulk of the quilts the guild has worked on recently, around 36, has been donated to the Ronald McDonald House in Saskatoon, which houses sick children and their families as they obtain medical treatment.
“That affects everybody in the province,” Leonard said. “Our area, too, people go in and they get these quilts, and then the kids can take them home.”
Some of the material for the charity quilts was brought using funds from SaskLotteries, while some of the batting was bought using funds from the Good Neighbour Store.
“Why do we do it? Because, I think, members just feel good about being able to help others, and to give to others,” Leonard said.
Many of the guild’s members were also involved in an effort to produce quilts for those affected by the Humboldt Broncos collision.
Leonard said the members of the quilt like to share ideas.
“We've got lots of ladies in the group that are really good mentors, and it's really a learning environment,” she said. “Even when we're making our charity quilts, somebody comes up with an idea and we get together and you learn things as you're doing it too, so that makes it a lot of fun.”
The guild is also a good way for some members to stay active and socializing with people.
Every two years, the guild hosts a quilt show. The next show is planned for late April in 2020.
The guild is always looking for new members. Those that are interested can contact Leonard at 306-682-9986. They meet officially on the first Thursday of the month at 7 pm at the Westminster United Church.