By Joel Hall
The 65 members, who make up the Tara Quilt Guild, use sewing needles and "fat quarters" as their paintbrush and canvas.
Once every three years, the members of the guild showcase their work to the community as way to raise money for local charities and encourage quilting in the community.
The guild's triennial Quilt Show will take place Oct. 16-17, 10 a.m., to 5 p.m., at Jones Memorial United Methodist Church in Lake City. For a $5 donation, visitors will have the chance to view more than 150 quilts, ranging from simple designs to complex, kaleidoscopic masterpieces.
Margaret Schlumper, chairman of the Tara Quilt Show, said it gives novice, and advanced, quilters a stage for their work, and gives the public an opportunity to be introduced to the art of quilting.
"For me, it's a chance to express my creativity," she said. "I always have wanted to draw, but I can't ... We are all artists in fabric. Our goal is to share our love of quilting with the community. [The quilts are] not like the ones grandma used to make."
During the show, various quilt stores will host vendor booths, where people will be able to buy quilting supplies and get introduced to the basics of the craft. There will be a silent auction of various quilting materials, and on Saturday, Oct. 17, there will be a raffle for "Home Sweet Home," the signature quilt of this year's show.
Proceeds from the show will benefit the guild, as well as the Clayton County Humane Society, and Project Linus, a national charity that donates handmade security blankets to seriously ill and traumatized children.
Jeanne Lowery, owner of Quilts and Fixins in Jonesboro, and a member of the guild, said the show always creates a buzz in the quilting community. "It amazes me how different all of them are," Lowery said.
"We all have different patterns and colors we like. It always creates a lot of interest. A lot of people from the community will come to see the quilts," she said. "We'll have people see the show, and come straight here [to Quilts and Fixins], because they have never been in a quilt store, or thought about where the quilts come from. We do have beginner classes to teach people how to make quilts.
"I love to make quilts, but when you're doing it to help somebody, that's great," she said.
Raffle tickets for the show are available at Quilts and Fixins, located at 7986 North Main Street in Jonesboro. For more information about the show, call (770) 472-0015.