By Rob Potter
LIBERTY March 27, 2001 Even the most casual observer probably could not help but notice that the interior of the Liberty Public Library seemed a bit brighter and more colorful than usual on Saturday.
Colorful quilts hung over bookshelves, from the balcony and from the ceiling at the Liberty Public Library Quilt Show.
We like to have them on display, said Liberty Public Library Director Marjorie Linko, who is a quilter herself and displayed a quilted pillow she made. The quilts brighten up the doldrums. And the patrons love it when they come in.
While the quilt show gave people the chance to admire the colorful creations, it was also an educational event. Quilters, some of whom are members of the Calico Geese Quilters of Sullivan County, demonstrated their talents for those who visited the show.
Robin Sherwood of Ferndale dropped by with a shoe box filled with quilt pieces left by her late grandmother, Mary Lynn. Sherwood was hoping to get some advice about the pieces and maybe learn how to quilt.
Ive never quilted before, but I love to sew, she said. My grandmother had this box of quilt pieces, and I would like to find out how to make it. We all miss her she was the true matriarch of the family.
Linko and fellow quilter Diane Atkins informed Sherwood that, ironically, the pieces form a pattern called Grandmothers Flower Garden. Happily surprised, Sherwood looked at the pieces again and noted that there was at least one flower for each family member thats left.
As they quilted, Atkins, Linko and Sally Abrams discussed the many aspects of quilting from its history to the scores of patterns to the various kinds of quilts people make.
Quilting shows have really blossomed in the last 10 years, Abrams said. People like the distinct patterns and the many colors.
Anyone who missed Saturdays show still has a chance to see the colorful quilts hanging at the Liberty Public Library. The quilts will be on display until the end of the month. (While mostly quilts are on display, there are a few other items also being shown. Among them are a quilted coat made by Susan Koenig and a dress, shirt and cape quilted by Atkins.)
But the quilt show was not the only quilting activity taking place in Liberty this past Saturday. Abrams and her fellow members of the Calico Geese Quilters were holding a quilting marathon at the Cornell Cooperative Extension building on Ferndale-Loomis Road.
Each March, which is National Quilting Month, the Calico Geese Quilters hold a baby quilt marathon. In 2000, the group, which has approximately 90 members from Sullivan County, Delaware County and Wayne County, Pa., made 25 quilts at the marathon. As of early afternoon Saturday, Calico Geese President Kathy Klein said the group would finish about 50 quilts for the 2001 marathon.
Quilts made by the dedicated Calico Geese members are distributed by Sullivan County Public Health and Teen Parenting. While many baby quilts are made at the marathons, the quilters also work on them throughout the year. Since the group began its baby quilt project in 1992, more than 700 warm, colorful baby quilts have been made.
We always put a label on the back, member Connie Stangel explained. It says that this quilt was made for you, and we put the you in big letters and then include the first name of the person who made that particular quilt. That way, they know its for them from one of us. And Public Health is always so happy to get them.
About a dozen Calico Geese members worked in an assembly-line fashion to complete a number of quilts Saturday. Many stitched patterns together either by hand or with a sewing machine, while others cut out new patterns and another group of ladies put backs on the quilts.
This serves a great purpose to make somebody happy, Abrams said.
The group meets on the second Monday of each month for business and socializing and holds a quilting workshop once a month. The workshops are usually held on the last Saturday of the month.
For more information about the Calico Geese Quilters, call Cornell Cooperative Extension at 292-5250.