Spinning wheels, an old-fashioned quilt, vintage sewing machines, and pincushions make up an interesting display at our local textile museum. What? A local quilt museum? That's right!
Every community has little gems that are sometimes hidden from general view. They don't mean to be. In fact, they want everyone to know about them, but sometimes they get lost in the crowd. Recently I discovered that our community has a quilt museum that is a regional textile center for quilting and textile arts. It serves as both a museum and an organization that supports guilds for those who quilt, weave, spin, and make baskets. Although these craftspeople have been part of our community for many years, it is only recently that a home has been created for them. And what a beautiful home it is!
My friend, Karleen, and I have been working hard at finding interesting things to do during the gray days of wnter. So, we decided to take a trip to the textile museum and see what was there. It did not disappoint!
The museums mission is to promote both the art and the craft of quilting and textile arts by providing educational opportunities to adults and children. They also strive to preserve the history of the textile arts as unique American art forms. But the goal that pleases me most is their desire to enhance the community by providing a welcoming place for people to share their knowledge and heritage through their love of quilting, weaving, spinning, basketry, and other textile arts.
Community members teach classes in spinning, weaving, sewing, quilting, and basket making. A side room is filled with a dozen new sewing machines. They are available for classes and are often used to teach sewing to groups of children.
Looms large and small sit near a window that provides lots of natural light. For a fee, volunteers will give private lessons to community members who wish to learn how to weave by making woven wool rugs.
Across from skeins of wool roving is a small library filled with books about textiles. Patterns, resource books, reference books, and reading books that are related in some way to the textile arts are available for hours of diligent study or casual reading.
Museum membership fees are minimal,yet offer a wide variety of benefits. Classes in subjects like quilt restoration, dating, care, and storage are available.
An afternoon at the textile museum equals a pleasant way to spend a wintry afternoon.