Parksville quilt show highlights history

A lot of love, time and artistry went into the creation of these fabric artworks

Eva Hansen of the Parksville Quilt House Quilters Guild and Buddy Williams from the Craig Heritage Park and Museum set up the display of antique quilts that will run through May.

District 69 is being invaded, but the biggest danger is increased warmth.

Through May around 40 antique quilts will be on display at the Craig Heritage Park and Museum in Parksville, Quilt Walk will display 67 quilts in local businesses and there will be over 300 quilts at the Parksville Community and Conference Centre on the May long weekend.

The Parksville Quilt House Quilters Guild organizes the events every three years to celebrate the amazing collections of the local quilters and their ongoing work in the community.

There are around 290 guild members who work together and donate over 100 locally made comfort quilts a year to hospitals, hospice, care homes and others.

The quilts on display at the museum are on loan from guild members and their friends and date from the 1940s back to a few from the 1890s and one from the 1850s.

“This is truly a step back in time with many charming handmade quilts of all sizes and designs,” said guild member Eva Hansen.

“Many popular quilt patterns are represented in the show,” she said “including Log Cabin, Dresden Plate, Irish Chain, Overall Bill, Crazy Quilt, Rob Peter to Pay Paul, Flying Geese and even a Texas Lone Star.”

Most of them were machine pieced or appliqued and then hand-quilted but there are a couple rarely found hand-pieced quilts.

There is information on the individual quilts, though sometimes not a lot is know, as with one that Hansen found being used to move furniture.

Guild VP Elinor Mix said some of them are still in amazing shape, including one award winner from the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto before 1900 with half inch quilting that is in pristine condition.

She said many of them were likely made at quilting bees that, aside from speeding up the work, were crucial social gatherings in rural Canada 100 years ago.

In one of the accompanying quilt histories, the owner mentions playing under the quilt frames as a child — probably at a quilting bee.

The antique exhibit opens along with the seasonal opening of the museum on May 1 and runs through the end of the month. The museum will have a grand opening event on Saturday, May 12.

The Quilt Walk also starts May 1 with 67 quilts at Parksville and Qualicum Beach businesses marked by a “Q” on the door. Each business also has a list of the participating businesses.

The big quilt show, slated for May 18 to 20, will include a guild boutique and three handmade quilts up for raffle.

Door prizes will be drawn throughout the day and members of the guild will be demonstrating various techniques.

For more on the guild check www.parksvillequilthousequilters.com. For more on the big show check www.seasonsbythesea.com or call Eva Hansen at 250-738-0208.

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