Quilters stitch up largest exhibition
Matariki theme for event showing members’ skills
It was almost 30 years ago that a group of like-minded quilters got together and formed Whangamata Patch & Quilt Guild. As they head towards that milestone celebration in February next year, the guild has put together its biggest ever Quilt & Textile Art Exhibition — a two day event with a Matariki theme, starting tomorrow. The event features something for everyone, including family friendly activities, demonstrations, raffles, pop-up shops and trade stalls, and the exhibition of more than 100 entries of traditional to modern quilting and fabric art quilts. Officially the exhibition is held every two years at Labour weekend, but Covid got in the way of the 2021 show so organisers decided to try a new weekend and a new theme. It will utilise the full space at the Whangamata Memorial Hall, and as well as pop-up shops there will be a licensed cafe´. There will be demonstrations of sewing machines and a long arm quilting machine, as well as the exhibition of wide-ranging works, including several quilts from a guest exhibitor. Free children’s activities include Matariki themed crafting and storytelling sessions. A wide range of raffles is available. There will be quilts, art, and thanks to the generosity of many of our local businesses, there are also several hampers. Proceeds from the raffles will support local charities. Helping the fundraising is Whanga Knives. Visitors can bring knives and scissors which need sharpening, and proceeds will be donated to the guild to be used for materials for their charity quilts that they make and donate to families as needed. One of the founding members, quilt and textile art exhibitor Wendy Dowling, says quilting has evolved over the 30 years, and it is now more of an art form. She says it attracts younger members and many of the works in the exhibition are mixedmedia — part of the new and evolving scene. Club president Debbie Adding says the guild has a strong membership, but more quilters and fabric artists are always welcome. She says many members come for the camaraderie as much as the crafting. The guild meets every second and fourth Wednesday at the Memorial Hall between 9am and 2pm. Anyone keen to find out more is welcome to turn up, or they can contact Wendy, 027 472 4052.