Posts Tagged ‘Visiting Upstate SC’

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, Expands Again

August 30, 2018

233 FLOWERS AMONG FRIENDS

Flowers Among Friends – a series of four small floral-themed quilt blocks – grace the front pillars of Westminster’s historic Moon’s Drug Store. Beckie Harper DeFoor, Kathy Collins Smith and Jerry Smith sponsored these lovely blocks to commemorate their lifelong friendship of fifty years. The blocks are reproductions of four quilt squares included in Beckie DeFoor’s original quilt of the same name, a quilt she made to celebrate their special friendship. Inspiration for Beckie’s quilt came from several small embroidery pieces included in Laura’s Fantasy Flowers. Local quilter and instructor Cheryl Keith edited and digitized the designs for computer assisted embroidery. The warm, sunny color scheme of oranges and yellow against a black background add of a touch of folk art to the facade of Moon’s Drug Store founded in 1901. The four blocks were painted by Beckie DeFoor, Kathy Smith, and Kathy and Jerry’s daughter Whitney Jones with the help of Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail’s Production Team.

Rebecca DeFoor with quilts


Kathy Smith and Rebecca DeFoor painting quilt blocks


Whitney Jones, Beckie DeFoor and Kathy Smith

223 DOUBLE WEDDING RING

The Nix family has lived in the Six Mile area for generations. The house and barn on the property now owned by Dean & Jennie Nix dates back to 1911. Dean’s grandfather was a blacksmith, and he and his wife, Clara had three sets of twins. James, their son, and his wife, Pauline bought the farm from his parents in 1950 and cared for Clara until her death.

The quilt dates back to the 1920s to 1930s, and was pieced and machine quilted, most likely by Bette Alexander, Pauline’s mother. The fabric used in the quilt is unusual for a Double Wedding Ring in that it consists of only two colors, red and grey. It appears to be of fabric referred to as Sea Island cotton, a fine cotton hand-spun and woven, the bright, red color most likely was hand-dyed as well. It is hand stitched on the finished quilt with threads taken from old flour sacks, proving not only the thriftiness of this family, but also how the art was handed down from generation to generation. It is believed that Pauline and her sisters were likely involved in learning how to quilt as children by hand stitching the flour sack threads!

Jennie and Dean Nix are now the owners and keepers of the family farm. The quilt is installed on the old barn, that can be seen across the farm’s field from the road. Jennie continues to carry on the rich tradition of quilting in the family and hopes to have one of her beautiful quilts transformed into a quilt block on the property soon.

The barn and painted quilt block are located at 1281 Mile Creek Road Six Mile, SC.

For further information visit (www.uhqt.org).

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Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, Adds #222 Quilt Block to Trail

August 10, 2018


222 Birchwood Bear’s Paw

The Birchwood Center, off Highway 11 in the far northern part of the Pickens County, SC, was the recipient of a quilt block sponsored through the Pickens County ATAX Grant awarded to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail.

The Birchwood Center for Art and Folk Life was founded in 2000 by Dot Jackson, Gayle Edwards, Tom Johnson, and Starkey Flythe to promote and enhance the study and awareness of the Arts and Humanities in this region. Their mission is to provide a free place to be used as a comfortable sanctuary or retreat to inspire creativity and enhance learning across the curriculum of Arts and Folk Life.  To this end, they have provided a variety of mostly free programs and activities to the public throughout the years. The Bear’s Paw block was placed on the Masters-Southerland House located on the Birchwood Center’s property in the mountains of northern Pickens County, SC, with Table Rock State Park as a backdrop.

The Bear’s Paw Quilt Block was chosen to represent the spirit and mission of the Birchwood Center. In the stories about the Underground Railroad, the Bear Paw was the symbol for a refuge for the slaves to find shelter, food, and safety. One of the founders, Dot Jackson, wrote a prize winning novel, Refuge. While the novel has nothing to do with the Birchwood Center, the title is a reminder of our mission and for the Bear’s Paw symbol on the Underground Railroad.

The Brown Bear is a native to this region and is a popular part of the local culture. In the Native American Spirit world and other mythology, the bear’s extreme power, size, courage, tenacity, confidence, and intelligence along with a touch of curiosity, mother-cub family connections, its gentle nature topped with a splash of cuteness has earned it the following title: The Great Protector and Defender of the peoples’ safety, and their freedom and resourcefulness to create a better life. The bear allows the people to be free to safely create a better life for themselves and their families. The Native Americans also believed that the bear was a messenger for dreams and visions. The Birchwood Board feels that all people who contribute positively to our history and the Arts share most of the bear’s characteristics.

Dot Jackson was a wonderful storyteller and told some wonderful tales about her bear encounters. Several tales were about a bear who loved snooping around at the Birchwood Center. We believe he just loved being around Dot. During the restoration of the Masters-Southerland House, Dot lived in a trailer on the property. After several sightings, that bear (or one bearing a striking resemblance) decided to snoop around under the trailer (called “Paradise” by Dot). It tore off some underpinning on the backside of Paradise and crawled in during the dead of the night. Dot woke to loud bumping noises and much shaking under her bedroom floor. This continued until he got settled in to rest. The bear must have decided that living close to Dot was a good thing. It bumped around under the floor anytime of the day or night. When was it going to come on in for a visit? Dot was concerned that the floor would collapse bringing down a wall. She never knew if that bear was lurking around outside. Dot was not sleeping well. The bear was happy. Dot was NOT. Somebody had to go! You know it was not going to be our feisty, fearless Dot. After a while, someone (maybe Dennis Chastain) volunteered to lure Dot’s bear out from his den under Paradise. He was taken to a more suitable home somewhere in the mountains. Dot was happy. The bear probably missed Dot.

One foggy morning at the Birchwood Center, Dot woke from a deep sleep in the comfort of Paradise to the sounds of loud grunting and other strange noises. She made her way to a front window to peer out in the direction of the noises but could see nothing unusual through the fog. When it got light enough, Dot came out to check out the area of the earlier noise. Well, she found a bear in her car and most of the contents thrown out onto the wet grass! Now, Dot was a lot like that Bear in that she was courageous, fearless, tenacious, and a protector (of her car) so she proceeded to try to get rid of her unwanted passenger. The intruder shared these traits so he was not moving out of her car. Dot was upset. The bear seemed pleased with himself. Since she was not supremely strong like the bear, Dot just went back into Paradise to call for help. In a few minutes she saw the bear slowly getting out of her car carrying the precious red bag that had gone with her everywhere for years. She was sorry to lose it but the bear looked so funny carrying that red bag slowly through the woods like he knew he had something important to take home. Dot could not help laughing at that memory even as she was looking at the mess he had made inside the car. Those paws could do some major damage!

The memories of Dot’s bear tales, along with the symbolism of the Bear, the popularity of this block in the local history, and with the original idea for the Birchwood Center, made choosing the Bear Paw a perfect choice. The Bear Paw Quilt Block represents the traditional quilt block and the colors chosen represent the new modern colors used today. Much of the material used in the block has light, softened dots in the background to represent our late Dot Jackson who was one of our cherished founders of the Birchwood Center.

The traditional Bear Paw with the modern, brightly colored materials comprised of contrasting muted backgrounds came together to make a beautiful quilt block for the Birchwood Center for the Arts and Folk Life. The square was created by Linda Blakeney, who met with the Birchwood’s Board of Directors to choose both the pattern and colors.

For further info call 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, Adds New Quilt Blocks to Its Ever Expanding Trail

July 28, 2018


#220 Autumn Compass

For more than 40 years, Lynn Brill of Anderson, SC, has been crafting quilts and perfecting her unique creations. After a stroke in January 2012, Lynn lost the use of her right arm. However, with an extension for her machine and the will to learn a new way to continue her quilting, she still makes beautiful quilts and wins ribbons in quilting shows. She and her husband, Glenn, have decided to honor her love of quilting with an UHQT block on their home.

The block chosen by Lynn is Autumn Compass and is a blaze of the glorious colors of autumn, Lynn’s favorite season. Adapted from several quilt designs, Lynn’s Autumn Compass was created in a class by Lynn Kirsch of Racine, Wisconsin. The circle for the Mariner’s Compass was created by drawing a circle around a pizza pan, then divided into quarters, eighths, and sixteenths to make paper foundations. After the compass was completed, it was hand appliqued onto the quilt. The border, comprised of a quilting technique called flying geese, is in greens, rust and gold. Because the Horicon Marsh in Wisconsin is a stopping place for thousands of Canadian geese each fall, Lynn decided to incorporate the flying geese into the border.

The block was installed above the garage door of their Anderson home in celebration of Lynn’s 70th birthday.


#221 Bursting in Air

Bursting in Air is a variation of the classic Greek Square quilt block. It is located on the Six Mile Farmers Market, once the site of the town’s volunteer fire department. This patriotic-themed block was sponsored through a Pickens County Accommodations Tax grant awarded to the Greater Pickens County Chamber of Commerce. Kim Smagala, Director and the Chamber selected Six Mile to receive this block to enhance the cluster of quilts already in the area.

When the town of Six Mile was contacted with the news that they had been chosen to receive a quilt block, Mayor Roy Stoddard chose this red, white and blue block to honor the four Congressional Medal of Honor recipients who grew up in the Six Mile and Liberty communities. It will serve as a reminder of the bravery and sacrifice of these men, who gave their all for their country. They are: Furman D. Smith, US Army, medal awarded January 17, 1945; William McWhorter, US Army, medal awarded September 27, 1945; Charles H. Barker, US Army, medal awarded June 13, 1955; James D. Howe, US Marines, medal awarded September 15, 1971. The stories of these men and their heroism can be found on the town of Six Mile’s website at (www.sixmilesc.org).

This patriotic themed square is modeled after one that quilter Doris Land included in a sampler quilt made for her son Karl Tubbs. Doris acquired the fabric and pattern for this square from Viking Sew ‘n’ Quilt, now in Maulden, SC, when she completed one of the Carolina Shop Hops. That year twelve quilt shops in the region participated, each offering its own pattern and fabric packet to use in a patriotic themed quilt. Doris was relatively new to quilting and assumed that all she had to do with each packet was sew the pre-cut pieces together. To her surprise, there were no little squares, triangles, and rectangles cut and ready to sew in the packet—just large strips of fabric and the directions for cutting. She laughs at her beginner’s mistake.

After joining a quilt guild she learned about their efforts to make Quilts of Valor for veterans. She was inspired to use her Shop Hop squares in a Quilt of Valor for her son Karl who served with the Army National Guard in the Iraq war. Doris’s sampler quilt uses the squares, including Bursting in Air, to frame a center Lone Star medallion. The quilt is machine pieced and machine quilted.

Doris resides in Pickens County and belongs to the Upcountry Quilters Guild and the Swamp Rabbit Guild in Traveler’s Rest.

For further info visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, Adds Two New Quilt Blocks to the Trail

May 31, 2018

The 213th quilt block “Mai’aIho Lena – Our Beautiful Land” is inspired by the traditional quilts of Hawaii and is based on a quilt made by well-known local fiber artist Bonnie Ouellette. This block is found at Gateway Arts Center, 213 E. Windsor Street, Westminster, SC, and was commissioned by the Gateway Arts Council.

Ouellette’s first trip to Hawaii inspired her fascination with the special art of Hawaiian quilting. She has since traveled to Hawaii more than thirty times and has great respect for the artistry and skill of native quilters. Traditional Hawaiian quilts are generally characterized by their symmetrical designs which reflect the unique natural elements of the islands. Her quilt incorporates the ulu—breadfruit—into its design. The breadfruit is one of the foods that sustained Polynesian travelers on their remarkable ocean journeys. Generally, these quilts are constructed of a colored solid fabric (often green or red) on a white background. Modern quilters, however, such as Ouellette, sometimes deviate from this tradition. An elaborate design is cut from the colored fabric, much the way paper snowflakes are cut from a single sheet of paper. Then the fabric design is sewn to the background fabric using the needle-turn appliqué method. Finally, the piece is completed by echo quilting around the appliqué. In the true Hawaiian tradition, “Mai’aIho Lena – Our Beautiful Land”, is completely hand-sewn and hand-quilted and incorporates Bonnie’s own hand-dyed fabrics.

It is fitting that the Gateway Arts Council has chosen Bonnie Ouellette’s work for this quilt block. Her skill as a fiber artist is well recognized throughout the Upstate art and quilting community. She is best known for her often whimsical and heavily beaded art quilts. Ouellette is a member of a number of fiber art groups, including Thread Heads and Hi Fiber and her creative spirit continues to nurture the art community. Her work has traveled throughout the United States as well as internationally and has been featured in fiber art magazines such as Quilting Arts.

Melody and Alan Davis, owners of Gateway Arts Center where this block is located, are, like Ouellette, active promoters of the arts in Oconee County and the Upstate. They are pleased to have her work displayed on their building.

The hand painted quilt block was installed on the front of the Gateway Arts Center in Westminster, SC.

Announcing #215 “Around the World”

The view of Ernest and Flo Riley’s porch at 21 Westwind Court, Seneca, SC, has been enhanced by the addition of an historic, painted quilt block. A small, framed piece of the original quilt, created in the 1930s by Flo Riley’s grandmother, Mary Beardon, hangs in the dining room of the home. Mary was born and raised in Horse Cove, NC. She met and married a builder and farmer, William Walker from Oakway, (Seneca).

This quilt was pieced in a star pattern, stuffed with cotton grown on the family farm and carded by hand. Quilting was done at a Quilting Bee, where Mary was assisted by her Aunt Ella Beardon and others. Mary was noted for her hot gingerbread with lemon sauce and locust brew. She also played violin, banjo, guitar and piano.

This quilt was certified and archived by the South Carolina State Museum during the time period from 1983-85, when the McKissick Museum at the University of South Carolina sent out a call for historic quilts from throughout the state. All the accepted quilts received were cataloged; stating maker, material, date and pattern at that time. Pattern names included Trip Around the World, Bow Tie and Sands of Time. After the certification, this quilt was cut up, framed and given to each of Mary’s eleven grandchildren by the aunts of the family and keepers of the quilt, Helen and Flora Beardon in the 1990’s.

The framed artifact now graces the home of E, (Ernest) and Flo, (Flora Helen) Riley. “E” has retired from a teaching, (History), and administration career in the Oconee County Schools, as well as serving on Seneca City Council for a number of years. Flo, grand-daughter of the original quilter, Mary Hill Beardon, was the Executive Director of the Michelin Career Center at Clemson University.

For further information about the Quilt Trail call 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail Installs #210 Bee Well Honey Quilts in Pickens, SC

May 6, 2018

Donna and Kerry Owen, owners and operators of the Bee Well Honey business in Pickens, SC, are now also the proud owners of an array of quilt blocks on their Natural Market & Gift Store. The original quilts were fashioned by a variety of quilters and reproduced in graphic form, to display on the exterior of the business that will be enjoyed by visitors to downtown Pickens, the Doodle Trail and Park. These quilts were supported through the Pickens County ATAX Commission grant to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail.

“Buzz In” a quilt square created by Joy duBois and Sue Hackett, was made at the request of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail to honor the Owens’ honey business. Joy found a pattern that everyone loved, pieced and quilted a lovely wall hanging that is now hanging inside the market. Sue Hackett, a quilter and member of the Oconee County Quilt Trail Production Team, did the embroidery on the quilted wall hanging. Joy loved the square so much that she has also produced the entire quilt for fun!

“Star Puzzle”, a vintage quilt from Donna’s side of the family, was discovered on a shelf at her mother, Pat Fisher’s, home in Rosman, NC. It was quilted by Donna’s grandmother, Alma Galloway Bruner, whom she called “Nanny.” Alma was born in Transylvania County, NC, on December 24, 1912. She married Addison William Bruner and lived on Highway 64 in that same county. The Bruners had 3 children, Pat Fisher, who was Donna’s mother, Jimmy who died in a drowning accident in his early 20s, and Bill Bruner who is a preacher at Rocky Bottom Baptist Church in Pickens County. “Star Puzzle” was made during the 1940-50s, squares sewn by Alma and quilted with the help of Geniva Holcombe and Madari Powell.

Donna’s fondest memories of Alma’s quilts were their comfort and heaviness while sleeping at her Nanny’s home, where there was no central heating. “The weight of those quilts would make me feel toasty on the coldest of nights and made me feel safe during summer thunderstorms!”

“Ode to a Sunflower”, was created by Vivian Perry, a member of the Upcountry Quilters’ Guild in Pickens County. Vivian and her husband, Tommy, moved to the upstate 5 years ago and live in Easley. She bought a long-arm quilting machine in 2004 and began quilting for customers, which she continued for 12 years. She now makes T-shirt quilts, has an Etsy shop called EggMoneyQuilts and an internet business: (https://tshirtquiltcompany.com).

Vivian’s inspiration for the “Sunflower Quilt” came from her love of the outdoors. She grew up in the country and she’d rather be outside than inside! She has always loved how sunflowers seem to stretch to soak in all the sunshine. There’s no pattern for this quilt; Vivian doesn’t use patterns. She prefers to make it up as she goes!

“Landscape” created by the well-known art quilter, Dottie Moore, whose work can be found in fine galleries throughout the world, was found at Boxwood Manor, the home of Annette Buchanan, during a UHQT Board meeting. Kim Smagala, Director of the Greater Pickens Chamber of Commerce, took one look at this tiny wonder, and said, “We have to paint this!”

Dottie has been creating what she calls visual conversations with fabric and thread since the 1980s. She is inspired by nature and every piece she fashions includes some part or all of a tree. Dottie lives in Rock Hill, SC. She teaches, lectures throughout the country and is the founder of Piecing a Quilt of Life, an international project dedicated to empowering senior women by recognizing their creative abilities. Her web site is (http://www.dottiemoore.com).

Bee Well Honey is known across the Southeast as a producer of delicious raw honey. They also offer a full line of beekeeping supplies. Kerry Owen was introduced to honeybees as a child growing up in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. His father, grandfather and neighbors had beehives or “bee gums” as a source of honey for the family. “You know sometimes, you just trip and stumble into the path you’re supposed to take,” Kerry explains, “but that is exactly what happened to me and my family. Bee Well Honey started in our kitchen, expanded into the garage, then into a rough sawn lumber barn and now we have buildings and honeybees scattered all across South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia. We are still paying our dues and if it where not for my beekeeper friends there would be no Bee Well Honey and I will always remember that.”

Bee Well Honey and the Owens family offer a full line of beekeeping supplies, honeybee packages, queens and 100% pure raw honey, as well as a natural market featuring organic and natural foods. For further info visit (http://www.beewellhoneynaturalmarket.com).

For further info about the Quilt Trail call 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritiage Quilt Trail in SC Adds 209th Quilt Block

April 28, 2018

Upstate Heritiage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, adds 209th quilt block to the quilt trail entitled “A Piece from Chris” / Tommye’s Quilt.

The artist, Christine Tedesco tells her story. “I am a woman who was brought up in the south learning the domestic arts of cooking and sewing. I grew to love the creativity in doing these things: the making of soups and casseroles, pants and shirts, jumpers and handbags. Later, the study of architecture furthered my visual awareness for things in the built environment. The act of making or creating anything, whether it is a simple tile pattern, drafting a complex technical drawing, or making a quilt or garment has always been an artistic endeavor for me.

A few years ago I had the opportunity to live in Italy for an extended period of time. I began to notice the beautiful tile work that was everywhere throughout the country. I began to photograph, draw and make watercolors of these tiles whenever I encountered them, attempting to create a visual library for myself. This study of tile design, in combination with my education in architectural design has given me a rich vocabulary for my work in textiles. Using vibrant, iridescent silks, I create dynamic compositions inspired by the patterns I saw in Italy. I also began to incorporate the gold and jewel tones of mosaics in Italian and Byzantine churches. I can see this influence emerging after looking at the many churches the artisans lovingly created. This study in combination with my architectural design education has resulted in my interest in non-traditional textile work.”

Tommye Hurst worked in the same office with Chris Tedesco for some years and was delighted each day by her work hanging in their office. Looking at the play on light that her silk creations revealed, gave the art a new look from different directions. The piece of Chris’s that Tommye choose came from the collection at The Arts Center of Clemson, and that play on light made it a challenge to paint.

“A piece from Chris”, the name came from two artists that Tommye greatly admires and appreciates. The fiber artist is Chris Tedesco, and the Quilt Square was painted by Chris Troy. Although Chris is primarily a ceramic artist, with the help of Elly Castle, took on the challenge. In the UHQT workshop these artists made magic in capturing the essence of the art on the metal square.”

The “Quilt Square” is exhibited on the outside of the Hurst’s home at 272 Stonehaven Way in Seneca, SC.

For further info about the Quilt Trail call 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, Added Number 203 Quilt Block

November 13, 2017

“The name of this quilt pattern is a Star Flower however, we call the quilt Granny Morris’s Dresses since my Maternal Grandmother, Julia Kemp Morris, sewed this quilt back in the early 1940s from fabrics of her old dresses and my grandfather’s shirts,” says Jeanie Morehead Christopher. Julia probably learned the art of quilting from her mother. Most likely, she and her 5 sisters passed the time away while quilting together. “My grandfather, Joseph Walker Morris, bought his first truck when he was 38 years old in 1927. He built a lucrative business known in the Anderson area as J. W. Morris Transfer. Later, the name was changed to Morris Van Lines as that is the name on all the advertising memorabilia (key chains, pencils, pens & business cards) we have in the family. Morris Van Lines moved to Belton Highway in July 1948 where it remained until liquidation by his children in 1993. Both of his children, O. V. Morris and Jeanette Morris Moorhead were involved in this business venture until their retirement. Mr. Morris’ son-in-law James Robert Moorhead was also employed by the company until his retirement in 1982,” adds Christopher.

This quilt is placed on the site of the Morris’ home at 2023 E. River Street (Belton Highway) in Anderson, SC. Hill Electric and Morris Van Lines were business neighbors for many years and Hill Electric bought the property in the 1990’s. They renovated the warehouses and office spaces to suit their electric business. “My grandparents’ home became their temporary offices while they did the remodeling. After a recent tour of the home and the warehouses, I found that much of it remains as it was when I was a child. Roller skating around the transfer trucks and having talent shows in my grandparent’s attic and basement are fond memories at Granny’s house,” say Christopher. “I also recall being able to see the double ferris wheel at the Anderson Fair Grounds from an attic window. We grandchildren would slide down the hill beside the house on broken down packing boxes from the moving business. Granny made fig preserves from her fig tree that is still standing at the bottom of this hill.”

“This quilt has already been a great example of how the Upstate Quilt Trail brings families back together. My first cousin and I have been in contact many times over the last few months while this quilt was being painted. I learned during those conversations that her daughter (the next generation!) has many fond memories of Granny’s house, her meals, her sewing, her garden in the back of the lot and playing as well around the transfer trucks. This would be Granny’s great-grand daughter and she hopes to come up to Anderson and see the quilt installed as well as get a current tour of the house where we all had such a good time!,” adds Christopher.

For further info about the Quilt Trail call 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate, SC, Offers Studio Update

October 6, 2017

It’s been a busy summer for the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail (UHQT). We have opened a new studio in Pickens County at the Holly Springs Center and moved the Walhalla studio to the former Oakway Intermediate School in Westminster. The Anderson studio is still located at the Anderson Arts Center. All the studios are integral components of the UHQT and production of quilt panels. All our production teams are hard at work and looking forward to a busy fall and winter. Direct communication links are highlighted.

Anderson County
110 Federal Street, Anderson
Painting studio located in the Old Carnegie Library Basement
Hours: Fridays 9:30 – Noon
Contact: Diane Schonauer by calling 864/231-9317

Oconee County
150 Schoolhouse Road, Westminster, former Oakway Intermediate School
Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, from 9:30 – Noon
Contact: Chris Troy by calling 864/985-1096

Pickens County
Holly Springs Center
120 Holly Springs School Road, Pickens, Room #110
Hours: Thursday and First and Third Saturdays, from 10:00 -2:00. Check Face Book for updates Holly Springs Center Quilt Painting Group
Contact: Cindy Blair by calling 864/973-3921

Visit our Face Book page for production updates and news. Please contact us at 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in SC, Adds New Quilt Block

August 30, 2017

The Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in SC, continues to grow as a destination for travelers interested in quilts, barns, outdoor art and the history of the Upstate.

Heidi Wolko, a renowned quilter whose creations have been exhibited at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky told us that this work was “one of 31 pieces from three different art quilt groups. They were all part of the Everchanging River that Bonnie Ouellette, our “Thread Heads Mother”, had dreamt up. Needless to say, all of us felt extremely honored about the invitation from the museum to exhibit after the “River” had traveled around the U.S. for about three years. Following the exhibit at the museum, the “River” made one more long trip – to Taiwan – until the individual pieces were returned to their creators.”

Her quilt, “Illusion”, is the two hundredth two addition to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail. The Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail sponsored this quilt for the Anderson Arts Center and it will join the other painted art quilt already on display at the Art Center Building located at 110 W. Federal Street, Anderson, South Carolina. The inspiration fabric quilt was shown along with another of Ms. Wolko’s quilts at the Double Illusions show sponsored by the Anderson Arts Center in 2015. Attendees at the show cast their votes for the quilt they thought should be added to the Arts Center building. The Illusion quilt had been displayed in Wolko’s Fair Play, SC home but after its selection for the UHQT, Ms. Wolko donated the quilt for an auction to benefit the Arts Center.

Wolko is a self-taught quilter who designed and made this quilt in 2008. The quilt was inspired by the book Blockbender Quilts written by Margaret J. Miller. This book encouraged Wolko to experiment with color. Wolko is a fiber artist whose use of texture, color and design has made a name for herself in the quilting community. She is the recipient of several quilting awards and continues to share her ideas and encouragement with other quilters. “One thing is for sure – I certainly LOVE color.” Images of some of her creations can be found by Googling Heidi Wolko.

For further info call 864/723-6603 or visit (www.uhqt.org).

Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate SC Installs Quilt Block #200 and #201

June 12, 2017

The Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail in Upstate SC celebrated its 200th quilt square, To the Mountains, at the Greater Pickens Chamber of Commerce at 222 W. Main St. in Pickens, SC. For eight years, the Quilt Trail has grown, block by block, into a meaningful part of Upstate South Carolina’s landscape for locals who want to preserve the history and traditions of the area. While the Quilt Trail is built, perpetuated, and maintained by locals with a passion for their history, it is also a unique experience for visitors to the area. The Trail appeals to those who enjoy art, nature, history, crafting, story-telling, and even just taking a car ride through the countryside.

As the UHQT has grown over the years, it has forged a path through the lives of so many in its surrounding communities. The members of the Trail are comprised of people who have had the tradition of quilting passed down to them, those whose created the tradition for themselves, and those who are not quilters but still help make the trail possible in various ways. There are now two teams of over 20 volunteers in Anderson and Oconee Counties and soon Pickens County who contribute over 7,000 hours per year giving presentations, painting quilt squares with members of the community, and finding ways to improve and promote this priceless resource. This art form has woven its way into the hearts of this community and beyond.

The original quilt, To the Mountains, a small landscape piece, was created by Joy duBois of Seneca. Joy met a quilter by the name of Gail Sexton, at the Upcountry Quilters Guild which meets at the Pickens Presbyterian Church in Pickens. Joy subsequently took a class that Gail was teaching in a new landscaping technique at the former local quilt shop, Heirlooms and Comforts. She enjoyed the class and the teacher so much that she went on meeting Gail for weekly sessions where they quilted together. Joy has many quilts in her “stash,” both landscape and appliqued borders that Gail designed and Joy has hand quilted.

When it came time to choose the quilt to adorn the Greater Chamber of Commerce building for the 200th block installment, this landscape quilt of mountains, rivers and a foreground of flowers and a tree was chosen from a group beautiful little landscape quilts by Kimberly Smagala, a life-long friend of Joy’s as well as the newest Chamber Executive Director.

For Kim and Joy, it all began 30 years ago. “My family moved from Texas when I was 5 years old and my baby quilt had shouldered a lot of love and use. My mother started working in a real estate with Jere, Joy’s husband. That is when we first met she mended and refurbished my quilt several times for me as I grew up. Joy has made myself, my mother, and my children many quilts throughout the years, including baby quilts. She and her husband are like family. ”

“The chamber office is the first stop for many visitors who visit our city. It is our hope to highlight more quilts throughout the Main Street corridor and around town as a part of a walking/bike tour. Quilting is part of our rich heritage and we are surrounded by so many talented quilters locally, especially those from the Upcountry Quilters’ Guild. We look forward to not only seeing more renderings of these beautiful quilts throughout downtown Pickens, but also creating a destination spot similar to what Landrum and Westminster, SC have accomplished.”

“A quilt warms the body and the soul, having this remarkable painted quilt panel by these talented artists portraying the beautiful craftsmanship that Joy put into this piece is amazing,” stated Smagala. This quilt panel was funded through the Pickens County ATAX Commission to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail.

201st UHQT Quilt The Cross

The Cross quilt is the 201st quilt added to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail. It is displayed on the Westminster Baptist Church, 212 East Windsor in Westminster, SC. The painted quilt block was sponsored by members of the Westminster Baptist Church. The Cross quilt block was designed by Janet Houts and taught during a quilting retreat at Kanuga Episcopal Camp in Hendersonville, NC attended by Paige Price and Denise McCormick.

Paige and Denise knew it would be perfect for their church and fellow quilters, Deanna DeFoor and Beckie DeFoor. Together they joined efforts and worked to piece and quilt a wall hanging, measuring 30 inches by 42 inches, as a gift to the members of the congregation. It was first displayed in the church on Easter Sunday, 2015. Several member of the church helped to paint the quilt block and it was presented to the congregation on Easter Sunday 2017. Being on the quilt trail allows everyone who passes by to enjoy the beauty of the fabric and painted quilts.

The cross is a Christian symbol that represents Jesus’s victory over sin and death. We are reminded about God and His plan of redemption through the symbolic significance of colors in the Bible. The two main colors of Westminster Baptist Church quilt are blue and gold. Blue is the color of the sky and a reminder of the heavenly realm. It also signifies the Healing Power of God. Gold represents God’s love because His love is more precious and more valuable than all the gold in the world. Love is the gold of God.

Westminster Baptist Church has been in the heart of town for more than 130 years. In the 1870’s, the town of Westminster, named after the original church located in a log building situated on the site of the Westminster First Baptist Church, grew up along the railroad and soon developed into a bustling business area. As the population shifted more toward the commercial area, some members of the church decided to build a church nearer the center of town. In 1884, they established a church ‘in the heart of town’. Now, more than 130 years later, the motto “In the heart of town, with a heart for the people” is still a principle held by its members. Located on E. Windsor Street, the church strives “to reach and develop devoted followers of Jesus Christ who love Him, grow in Him, and serve others in His name.”

For further info about the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail visit (www.uhqt.org).