Big Red Quilt Guild Meeting August 17, 2020
Betsy Muir, president, opened the meeting via Zoom at 7:00 p.m. Seven board members were present at Tiara Yachts to assist with the quilts displayed for the program and 28 members were present on Zoom.
Betsy announced we will be using Facebook for our next three monthly meetings—September 21, October 19, and November 16. This will allow members who are not able to view these meetings on the third Monday to see them later. Our next meeting program will be Scrappy September.
Kathy Ryzenga is taking charity quilts. If you have quilts to donate, please contact Kathy to make arrangements to get them to her.
Next year’s dues will be $10.00 for the October 2020 to October 2021 year. All members who pay their dues by October 1, 2020, will be eligible for the drawing for the Big Red Quilt Basket loaded with fabrics, thread, patterns, chocolates, teas, and other goodies. Note: The odds for winning this basket are much better than winning the lottery!
Kris Kennedy announced our members have now made enough house blocks to complete the Village quilt. Bridget Morel, Kris, and Betsy will sew the quilt top together and get it off to a long arm quilter.
The Tiled-Background workshop with Barb Bredemeier and Janet Haines is once again being rescheduled.
October 12 the completed Every-Other-Block-of-the-Month quilts will be displayed at Tiara Yachts west parking lot. Bring your lawn chair, a bottle of water, and your EOBM project plus one other project; if you do not have an EOBM project, bring two (2) projects you have made during this pandemic. There will be a drawing for those who bring their finished EOBM, and instead of door prizes, we will have outdoor prizes! Please park in the eastside parking lot as we are using the west lot for our display area.
Nora Slikkers introduced our program presenter, Nancy Roelfsema, from the greater Grand Rapids area.
Nancy has been quilting for more than 30 years, learning how to sew when she was 10 years old. She is the eighth of ten children and learned if she wanted to have new clothing rather than hand-me-downs, she needed to create her own outfits.
Why I Quilt was the title of her presentation, during which she showed 46 quilts, beginning with her Aunt Rachel’s hand-pieced quilt. Her first reason for quilting is for family. She showed a quilt representing the farm house her family moved into when Nancy was eight years old; a quilt made of
fabric made in the Netherlands which she purchased when she and her husband visited members of his family there; quilts made for family babies, for a seven-year-old new family member, and for weddings. She made a T-shirt quilt demonstrating how to use a two-inch grid and Dyna-flow paint. She had a Round-Robin quilt made by her bee members and one made together with her sister Renee.
Her second reason for quilting is for charity. Nancy has traveled to Ukraine and Tanzania on mission trips, taking quilts with her and leaving them there for others.
Her third reason is historical. She displayed a quilt she purchased at an auction, an antique Crazy Quilt dated 1883, a modern-day Crazy Quilt Nancy made featuring various antique pieces such as a jeweled cuff and a sequined bow tie, a glorified nine-patch from the 1930s, a hand-pieced Seven Sisters antique quilt top she would like to have hand quilted, and a quilt featuring 12 Bible stories, identified as made by Grand Rapids church ladies.
Her fourth reason is for teaching. Nancy has taught various classes on You-Tube (On point—TV) for which she makes demonstration blocks which eventually end up in a quilt such as New York Beauty, Rails, and applique design in E-Quilt.
Her fifth reason for quilting is for entering competitive shows. She showed a Lone Star quilt on which she had sown 10,000 beads, a Tranquil Star with beads, the quilt she made for her Learning to Quilt book, and another quilt featured in Learning to Quilt II with fabrics designed by Sue Penn for Free Spirit fabrics.
The sixth reason Nancy quilts is to show off her collection of buttons. One of her quilts had lots of buttons!
Her seventh reason is she finds fabric that speaks to her and then she finds a way to use it in a quilt. She showed her quilt featuring various shoes, some that used African fabrics, a New York beauty with African-inspired fabric, and hand-dyed fabrics.
Her eighth reason is to try new techniques. These quilts used various dying, painting, and gel techniques.
Her ninth reason is for shows. Her Beaded Paradise (a New York Beauty style) and her miniature quilt using paper piecing were good examples here.
Finally, Nancy quilts because she is an artist. She gave tribute to her mother’s artistic talent and showed a small quilt her mother had made for a neighbor, using many different stitching techniques.
Nancy teaches classes at Smith Owens Sewing Center. Her email address is
Betsy thanked Nancy for her presentation. The BRQG meeting ended at 8:15 p.m.