Monday, February 14, 2011

Our Guest Quilter

One Sunday afternoon a month, I participate in a Small Scale Quilt Study Group.
It is somewhat a misnomer...we primarily share all the wonderful small projects we are working on, as well as the large.  Visit Merumo at her blog to get a recap of all the ladies work.

The story of our guest quilter....
I meet Cheryl 3 years ago when we both became teachers at TOWQS.
Cheryl's talent lies in her needle turn applique and her specialty is pictorial quilts. Cheryl taught her first class, but was suffering from a sinus infection at the time.  It was a two part class and she never made it to that second session. We received the news that she was in the hospital...
in a coma...
viral meningitis.
We were all shocked and horrified that our new friend was battling for her life.
After 3 months in a coma, she was transferred to a rehab hospital and that was the last I had heard of her until the end of November 2010.
Her SIL brought her into the shop on a day Lin and I were holding down the fort.
It was so wonderful to see her and she was still that gracious, elegant woman I had meet 3 years prior.
One thing had changed.....she had lost her sight.
The tragedy seemed to effect us more than it did Cheryl.  A deeply religious woman, she found blessings in her situation. 
 "Don't get me wrong.  I wouldn't have wanted this to happen, but so many good things have come my way because of it."
Not being able to quilt was the one thing that saddened her most.
We are working on a plan to get her back to her beloved handwork.
As she says, "It doesn't have to be perfect.  I can't see it anyways!"

I would love now to share Cheryl's exquisite work prior to her blindness.
Believe it or not, this is her first hand quilted project.
I am going to give you a block by block tour so you can begin to appreciate the detail and embellishment.  Of course, I am sorry you all were not there to see it in person.
There are a few buttons, but most of the embellishment is done with ribbon embroidery.
We will start with one of her favorites, the Outhouse.
Remember that you can click on the picture to get a larger view.
She remembers that she was working on this one the day Princess Di passed.
Being a fan of Cardinals (and that has nothing to do with our AZ football team!), this is a favorite of mine. 

The Foxgloves and Calla Lily plants are my favorites in this cottage garden.
Note the path with the dog paw prints, the little fella headed to the fire hydrant and that pebbled foot bridge.

The Wisteria on this center block is so much more vibrant in person.

I hope you have enjoyed this tour of Cheryl's quilt. 
Mark your calendar on March 13th. 
She'll be back to share her lighthouse pictorial quilt with us and start hand piecing the first hexies for her next quilt.
Cheryl remains hopeful that she will regain some sight. 
She saw a small patch of blue sky the other day that brought her to tears.
For me, I know I will gain more from my relationship with her than I can ever give back, but we are sure going to give it our best to get her quilting again.


Sharon said...

Incredible quilt! Prayers for Cheryl that she will be able to regain her sight. She sounds like a very inspirational lady, you are blessed to have met her. It certainly puts our own lives in perspective. Thanks for sharing!

Maureen said...

Something like this always makes me pause and be thankful for what I have. My best wishes to Cheryl. What a beautiful and creative quilt! It makes me smile - wish I could study it in person!

Elyte said...

Cheryl sounds like a remarkable person. You are lucky that your paths have crossed again.

Lori said...

Wow, what a story. Her quilt is beautiful but it also sounds like she has a beautiful spirit.

Cat said...

Her quilt is beautiful. Thanks for sharing her story. I will keep her in my prayers and thoughts.

Lee Prairie Designs said...

Thank you for sharing your special friend "Cheryl" with us and her beautiful applique quilt.

Carolyn :)

Loris said...

Thank you for sharing your friend, Cheryl with us. Her creativity is heart warming and so inspiring. I'm thankful she has known God's blessing in the midst of such a big challenge. I'm praying she does receive her sight back and continues to know joy and peace deeply.
The applique pictures are so fun and full of such sweet, intimate details. I love the cardinal one too...and of course, the pooch!

merumo said...

It's a very nice post Cheryl! I also just finished my post about our meeting yesterday. Hope Chery's #2 enjoyed her visit...

Darlene said...

What a beautiful quilt. I think I took a handquilting class with Cheryl in June '09 - I'm so sorry to hear about her illness. Sigh!

Prayers and good thoughts for her.

Merilyn said...

What an incredible story. Thankyou so much for sharing her beautiful work, she is a very talented sewer. I do hope she can regain some sight again so she (and we!) can enjoy her work!

Stray Stitches said...

What a truly stunning quilt. It's hard to believe that was her first hand quilted project. Such beauty in fabric is something so hard to find. Thank you for sharing Cheryl's amazing work!

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

It's just a wonderful quilt. You are fortunate to know such a remarkable person.

Aunt 'Reen said...

What a remarkable woman Cheryl is! Her quilt is stunning and her spirit is incredibly inspirational. Thank you for sharing her quilt and story with us!

Anonymous said...

An amazingly beautiful applique for her first piece! Please tell Cheryl how much we have enjoyed seeing it.

How wonderfully providential that you and Lin were in the shop the day she visited. I do hope you and the group can get her back involved in some handwork of some kind.


Marianne said...

It´s so wondefully quilts.
Greetings from Sweden.