Learn about the quilts and quilters of Lopez Island

  • Mon Sep 30th, 2019 5:40pm
  • Life

Submitted by Karen Alexander

While skilled quilters have always enjoyed applique, curiously absent from all but a handful of quilts before the 1880s is the human figure. The few “humans” that do appear on quilts prior to that era were utterly unique to the quilt maker herself with details as lifelike as the needleworker’s skills could render.

So why did human figures suddenly begin to appear on quilts after the 1880s? What caused the change? To find out the answers, come visit the quilt exhibit “Imaginary Friends: Evolution of the Bonneted Children” put together by quilt historian Karen B. Alexander, a former president of The Quilters Hall of Fame and a member of the American Quilt Study Group since 1981.

Alexander, whose mother-in-law Winifred Alexander co-founded Enchanted Quilters of Lopez Island, has selected over 20 quilts from her extensive collection to tell the story of the evolution of the Bonneted Children. With her love of the traditional as well as the unusual, you will see wonky and zany bonneted figures march along with the traditional in this exhibit.

“Imaginary Friends – Evolution of the Bonneted Children” (10 a.m.-4 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 5) is a fundraiser for Woodmen Hall. There will be a donation jar at the door. Alexander will lead exhibit tours at 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. and be happy to entertain your questions.

In addition, Karen will be donating three quilts from her collection that will be raffled off to benefit the on-going restoration and maintenance of Woodmen Hall. The exhibit doors will be open 10am-4pm. The public is also free to bring family quilts for a Show & Tell that will take place after the 2:30 exhibit tour ends.

Taking place on the same day at the Lopez Grange (10 a.m.-2 p.m.) is another exhibit of quilts. Food will be available for purchase from El Taco Bout It at the Grange.

Quilts in this second exhibit were made by the members of the Enchanted Quilters of Lopez and set aside as gifts for members of the Lopez community who may have encountered a health crisis, experienced a catastrophic event in their life or perhaps just been through a particularly rough time. EQ Comfort Quilts have been made for and donated to the Family Resource Center, Lopez Elementary School and the Children’s Center Pre-School for many years now. In addition, EQ makes certain that the Lopez Island Fire Department and the San County Sheriff’s Department that work locally on Lopez Island have comfort quilts in their vehicles at the ready at all times.

The Grange’s EQ Comfort Quilt exhibit is a fundraiser for the Grange and will be raffling off four wooden Barn quilts. This year these amazing wooden quilts will be 1/4 of the size of those raffled in the past thus can be hung on a wall in your home or outside on your barn or house.

Following the Grange exhibit, in the early evening there will be a Farm Tour Dinner and a Pig Roast Potluck followed by a Square Dance at the Jones Family Farm. BYO everything (potluck dish, table setting, and libations); 5:30-7:30 p.m. potluck (please contribute $ for the pig); 7:30-10 p.m. square dance, $10. The Band is The Grey Whales! Please join us for a full day of enchanting quilts and good community fun on Oct. 5!