Treasure Mountain Festival Quilt Show


     The Quilt Show, a favorite TMF tradition, features beautiful quilts and needlework, both heirloom and new from many area residents. Traditional as well as contemporary patterns are showcased in the exhibit.  A variety of needlework techniques are demonstrated at the Quilt Show.

     The show is held in the Pendleton Community Building in Franklin, Friday and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., closing only for the parade.  Sunday the show is open from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  The quilts are hung fully open on large frames for a spectacular display.

     Quilters and needle crafters from Pendleton and the surrounding counties are encouraged to enter the show that is organized and presented by the Sew and Sews Quilt Guild. Membership in the guild is not a requirement to enter. Ribbons are awarded in many categories including both antique and modern quilts, wearables (i.e. vests and purses), and needlework. A youth division is provided for exhibitors 18 years or younger.

     Guild members will be displaying their wall hangings designed and stitched for a challenge project.  The 2015 challenge theme is “Out of the Box or Over the Border”.  Participants each received four fabrics that are to be used in the wall hanging and may add one more fabric to the small quilt.  The challenge is to be creative and allow the design to spill into the border.  

     The Quilt Show will include a new feature this year.  A silent auction will be held and bids will be accepted on Friday and Saturday until parade time. Auction items will include quilted and hand-made items. Highest bidders will be notified to pick up their goods either Saturday evening or Sunday.  

     Crazy quilts, both antique and contemporary, are often favorites at the festival. These unique quilts became popular in the late 1800’s during the Victorian era. Crazy quilting is a bit misleading as they are most often not quilted.  They are constructed of randomly pieced fancy fabrics embellished with extravagant embroidery on nearly every seam. Most historians pinpoint the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition as the spark that ignited the crazy quilt rage.  An exhibit in the Japanese pavilion of asymmetrical art and crazed ceramics inspired the designs. Women’s magazines, such as Peterson’s Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar, featured these new designs stating that traditional patchwork designs were being replaced with elaborate, kaleidoscope-like effects in the quilts. Most crazy quilts were show pieces rather than functional. Often they were lap robes used to decorate the parlor.   They show cased the women’s needlework skills and allowed the ladies artistic license that traditional quilts did not cultivate.

     Crazy quilts were usually begun with a foundation block of muslin.  The muslin was covered with asymmetrical pieces randomly stitched to the foundation. Silks, satins and velvets were prized fabrics to include. The quilter decorated the seams with embroidery silk with feather stitches, herringbone stitch, cross stitch or any other fancy stitch that could be invented.  Often the center fabric of each block contained an embroidered animal or flower done in a satin stitch. It was quite popular to embroider the initials of family members into the design. Each crazy quilt became its own unique piece of art work.

     The T.J. Bowman family has a beautiful example of a Victorian era crazy quilt made by Hannah Catherine Masters Bowman in the 1890’s. Hannah was the first Mrs. T.J. Bowman to reside on Main Street in Franklin. Her lap sized quilt incorporates all the characteristics of the finest crazy quilts of the era. She lovingly stitched her children’s and husband’s initials in the design along with lovely flowers or birds in each block. As with many crazy quilts hers is one that reveals much family history.

   The items that are displayed in the TMF Quilt Show represent thousands of hours of craftsmanship.  Great care will be taken keep them in fine condition.  No food or drink is allowed in the display area. Items cannot be touched, but one of the guild members (wearing white gloves) can show you the back of an item if you are interested.

     Items to be displayed may be brought to the Pendleton Community Building on Wednesday from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and on Thursday, from 9:00 a.m. till noon.  Receipts are provided for each item, which must be presented when the item is picked up.  Items must be picked up between 1:30 and 3:00 p.m. on Sunday,  unless prior arrangements are made.  If there is a history or story of interest about your quilt please bring that along.  Don’t miss this display of hand crafted treasures from the past and present at this year’s festival.