In January, the members of the Homestead Quilt Guild posed with their latest creation, a quilt for Mark Senftner who is right now in Rochester undergoing treatment for brain cancer.
The members of the guild combine their love for creating with fabric with their care and concern for their friends and neighbors in making quilts for people from Sully County diagnosed with cancer.
Sewing machines whir and quilters use roller cutters and steam irons to quilt comfort for cancer patients during their weekly gatherings on Wednesdays at the Phoenix Center.
The Homestead Quilt Guild started meeting in the basement of the Onida United Methodist Church on April 11, 1996.
Sharon Nuttall says that “as a group, we brighten somebody’s day that has been diagnosed with cancer. We take into account the person’s personality when we design the quilt, and decide the best person to make the delivery.”
Over the past two decades, the Homestead Quilt Guild has made nearly 50 quilts for their Sully County ‘family’
members battling cancer. Recipients must be a current resident of Sully County
When asked what moves them to make the quilts for cancer patients rather than stay at home working on their own projects, Sharon turned thoughtful, reflecting, “We share a lot together.”
Although they do take time to work on their own projects, the majority of their Wednesday meetings is spent piecing quilts to give to Sully County cancer patients.
Since the day it was completed, Sully County Senior Citizens have had the free use of the Phoenix Center. “The majority of us are senior citizens,” said Sharon, so the guild decided to gather there to sew on Wednesdays.
“I think this has really helped everybody, that we are able to bring our machines here,” said Sharon. “We have space to cut in one area and iron in another, and everybody has a place to sit and sew.”
The guild estimates that it costs about $300 to make one of the lap robe quilts they distribute. One area of quilting where the guild realizes a savings is in hand-tying the quilts with crochet thread, rather than having them machine quilted.
Each 54x68 inch quilt contains twelve blocks, three across and four down, and receives a border.
The group’s only fundraiser is the wall-hanging or quilt they raffle and give away during the ’Twas the Night Before Christmas event. This year’s winner was Dianne Boschee, daughter of guild member Mary Rawstern.
There is no charge to become a Homestead Quilt Guild member. The Guild welcomes anyone interested in quilting to join them at the Phoenix Center on Wednesdays at 10:00 a.m.