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The Quilting Circle

Historically, quilting circles have been a group of people, mainly women, who gather to complete a quilt. These circles provided a social moment for the participants as well as helping a neighbor or family member complete a flimsy by hand quilting it. There are circles of this nature today, and if you are interested in joining one or hiring a circle to hand quilt a flimsy for you, I suggest you ask around, talk to local quilt shops, and/or call local churches. Someone will know someone who knows where to find one.


However, today I want to talk about my quilt circle. I no longer hand quilt and have no affiliation with a circle. My circle is more of a connections type of thing. I have some very dear friends in my area who are quilters, and a precious friend who lives states away who showed me the way to quilting and has encouraged all of my stitching endeavors. I love these people beyond measure. But! Lately, I have been running into people I have met through quilting and reconnecting with old friends as a result of quilting. While I was at the AQS show in Branson recently, I ran into several people I know due to my passions--Cheryl, a shop owner, Stitch & Clip Quilting, whom I love to visit; Sharman, a longarmer from my longarm club at All N Stitches; and Adam and Micki, instructors I have had more than once over time.


While I was there an old friend from years ago reached out about me teaching a class for her circle. Laura and I were neighbors and always had the best conversations in one yard or the other. I cannot wait to facilitate a class for her and her friends and catch up. These encounters have me thinking about all the people I have met and made friends with as a result of quilting.


Last week, while shopping for a piece of fabric I ran into Kathy. It was so exciting to see her. We met quite a few years ago at an EPP class.


We stayed in touch and took another class on curved piecing at the same shop--Appletree Quilting Center. At the same EPP class, I met Melissa. Melissa came back to my quilting life at a retreat I attended a few years later. As a result of that retreat, I met Rhonda of Prime Time Quilt Co. I have stayed connected to Melissa on social media, and Rhonda and I have become long-distance friends who collaborate, provide each other with a strong shoulder, and plan to meet up at shows, retreats, etc. as we can.



Honestly, I know many more people who have a place in my circle, and I look forward to meeting up with each of them again.


I tell you all of this because I truly believe that our connections as quilters can be such a beautiful and rewarding part of our lives. Just like the beautiful fabrics, threads, and designs we work with, the friendships we develop and acquaintances we make enrich our lives so much. We are lucky to be included in such a large circle of creatives as a result of our very own creative passions.


Until we meet again, happy stitches!

Mary

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