PebbleCreek Quilters’ Small Groups

Cynthia Schwartz and Julie Baird sew with friends in the fiber arts room (picture by Jonnie Chandler)

Jonnie Chandler

“You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy fabric and that’s pretty close.”—Unknown

Quilters are happy when they are shopping for fabrics, sewing, spending time with other sewers/quilters, and exchanging ideas and patterns.

To support and encourage friendship among quilters, several small groups were organized within the PebbleCreek Quilters club (PCQ). The PCQ has more than 200 members with various talents and interests. The smaller groups address those interests.

Many of the groups are reminiscent of historic “sewing bees” or quilting parties. Parties may have begun in the 1800s to help those who lived in isolated areas overcome their loneliness. Neighbors would gather to help a bride-to-be finish quilts before her wedding. Men as well as women gathered to quilt. It is documented that there are “man-made” quilts as early as the 13th century. The PCQs continue the theme of helping others by sharing their talents and encouragement in small groups within the club.

Small PCQ groups that address quilters’ special talents and interests are:

Featherweight Club, organized by Sue Whaples, meets the last Monday of the month. Participants sew with their Singer featherweight sewing machines. Some machines date from the 1940s and 1950s. Sue’s husband, Emory, often attends the featherweight meetings and oils these vintage machines and provides maintenance tips. Some of the quilters have named their sewing machines as many are handed down from mothers and grandmothers. The Monday night sessions are open to all sewers not only to those with featherweights.

Block of the Month, led by Julie Baird and Maureen Strachan, meets the third Tuesday each month. Prior to the monthly meeting, Julie and Maureen provide a pattern to construct a block. The process allows quilters to pace themselves by making one or two blocks each month. The goal is to have enough completed blocks at the end of the year to make a large size quilt.

The No Shame Train, led by Tori Benz-Hillstrom and Linda Shaver, meets monthly on the first Monday evening and all day the first Tuesday to share ideas on completing those pesky unfinished objects (UFOs) that seem to multiply under beds and in the back of closets. The group supports each other without guilt, offering encouragement, support, and motivation to complete unfinished projects.

Donna Aybar originally organized Monday Night Madness, an informal fun group, for those who wanted to get away from Monday Night Football. The group has expanded to include opportunities for those who are unable to sew during the day and to The No Shame Train members who are completing their UFOs. Monday Night Madness also has taken on a goal to create items for the Gallery sales.

All PCQ members are invited to join these groups. The small groups meet in the fiber arts room at the Creative Arts Center.

Additional information on each of the small groups is published on the PCQ website: