Des Moines Area Quilters Guild
In This Issue
Upcoming 2011 Workshops
Newcomers Meetings
Quilt Show News
Community Service
Education Committee
2010 Challenge Winners
"Little Quilts" for 2011 Quilt Show
Guild Member Wins at AQS Show
Quilter's Garage Sale
"Patches for Peace"
Quick Links

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Upcoming Program


At our next guild meeting on Tuesday, April 26, we welcome   Wendy Butler Bernsa quilt artist, teacher, and lecturer from Lake Mills in southern Wisconsin.  Wendy found her passion for quilting in 1993 and since 1997, she has taught and lectured about the art of quilting regionally and nationally.   Wendy's quilts are noted for their bold use of color, unusual fabrics, and a combination of unconventional techniques.  Her quilt designs are original and fluctuate between traditional with a twist and contemporary art quilts.


The afternoon lecture topic is "I've Been Bitten by the Bug." 


The evening lecture topic is "Capering With Creativity and Our Quilts."

Guild meetings are held at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the West Des Moines United Methodist Church at 8th & Grand, in West  Des Moines 



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Workshop Registration and Class Supply Lists 
Download a PDF of the workshop registration form and print:  
Workshop Registration


Captivating Colorful Quilts Supply List 

Board Members & Committee Chairs
Download a PDF with contact information for board members and committee

Financial Statement
Download a PDF of the Financial Statement

Financial Statement


 Newsletter Issues

Piecetime News

April 2011 


Finally we are getting some warmer weather!  I was beginning to think it was never going to get here and we would miss the crocus, daffodils, and tulips.  I thought after the large storms that were a distraction for our evening meeting in March we were much closer.  Uffda, I am thankful it seems to be here.


I have been working on my President's challenge--on paper anyway. We have so many Uffda moments in our life and we need to go through all of them whether awesome or chaotic. Thanks for sharing your Uffda jokes.  I need them when I get home. Sometimes it's just an Uffda to sit down to eat supper.   


I have gotten further on my Veterans quilt.  I fell asleep on the couch one night and Myron woke me up to go to bed (which is not all that unusual) but this time as much as I tried to go back to sleep I couldn't.  Red, White, and Blue fabrics are fun to work with any time of the night or early, early morning. I am ready to set the rows together. It reminded me of how many of our military are not doing something fun when they are out on duty or cannot sleep. I don't know about you but I usually am thinking good thoughts and praying for those I make quilts for. Although I may never meet the person on the receiving end, I am so thankful for the dedication they gave to make our country what it is today.


Inspired--I see the show and tell, listen during treat time of what you are creating, and come home and day dream about all those wonderful quilts and the quilters that made them.  The community projects you are all involved in are so appreciated!  It is a gift to be a part of this giving community.  You are all so giving, hospitable, flexible in storms and microphone problems.  I get so excited for the Guild meeting to come. 

Diane Thiese--President  

Upcoming 2011 Workshops  

The mission of the Des Moines Area Quilters Guild is to stimulate an interest in quilts and quilt making, educating its members, and provide for the inter-change of information.  (Adopted -- September 20, 2003). 



April's Workshop will be held at West Des Moines Christian Church at 4501 Mills Civic Parkway in West Des Moines.  To get there from Interstate 35, exit at Mills Civic Parkway, exit 70.  Turn east onto Mills Civic Parkway and drive about .9 of a mile.  The West Des Moines Christian Church will be on the north side of Mills Civic Parkway.   We will meet in Building #3 which is the one closest to Prairie Life Fitness


Wendy Butler Berns  

Wednesday, April 27 (9am - 4pm) -- CREATING CAPTIVATING COLORFUL QUILTS -- Begin to take the mystery out of confusing fabric choices. Develop confidence in choosing fabrics and understanding more about color dynamics.  This is a technique and project based class.


Thursday, April 28 (9am - 4pm) -- CAPTIVATING CONE FLOWER -- Learn the process of creating simple pictorial quilts from a photograph or picture.



Karen Eckmeier  

Wednesday, May 25 (9am - 4pm) -- ACCIDENTAL LANDSCAPES: BEACHES -- Here is an introduction to creating landscapes "accidentally" using Karen's layered topstitching technique. These little beach scenes are quick and easy to make, no templates, no fuss -- just free form rotary cutting and topstitched edges. Personalize your beach by adding collage details like a dune fence, beach grass, shells, sailboats, beach chairs, umbrellas, lighthouses, photo transfers, etc.


Thursday, May 26 (9am - 4pm) -- HAPPY VILLAGES/ FABRIC COLLAGE -- Explore the freedom of fabric collage! No seams to piece or match, no lines to trace ... Just free form cutting of step and window shapes. Step by step your little village will magically come to life.


Nancy Prince  

Wednesday, June 29 (9am - 4pm) -- THREAD PAINTED LANDSCAPES -- Introduces two thread painting techniques.  You will learn how simple thread painting is. A zigzag or straight stitch are the only stitches necessary to create amazing thread painted designs. No artistic skill is needed so come join us for a day full of fun. Simple designs have been selected to boost your confidence right away. 


Thursday, June 30 (9am - 4pm) -- SHADING AND BLENDING WITH THREAD -- This workshop will introduce you to a simple way of blending and shading with thread. The process might seem complicated, but Nancy's step-by-step approach will show you how choosing the correct thread colors and the color-coded design makes thread painting the design a snap. It's easy and way too much fun!! 


Joanie Zeier Poole  

Wednesday, July 27 (9am - 4pm) --  CHOOSING, ADAPTING, AND USING QUILTING DESIGNS --

Plan for a day of fun and discovery creating your own quilting designs with Joanie's easy paper template method! Using simple tools and skills from the art world, learn to manipulate almost any image, including stencils and paper patterns, to fill the quilt top with perfectly coordinating squares, triangles and multi-sized borders. Prior to class, each student constructs a small quilt top that is used to demonstrate how various spaces are divided and filled and to show a variety of marking procedures. All experience levels, any quilting technique --no machines required.  Material fee of $3.00 to be collected in class.

Thursday, July 28 (9am - 4pm) -- IVY WREATH REFINED FREE-MOTION -- In the tradition of the great wholecloth quilts, transform a solid piece of fabric into a work of beauty using the graceful Ivy Wreath design created especially for this class. Focus on refined free-motion techniques using the basic elements of Heirloom Machine Quilting: curvilinear motifs, grids, and stippling. Class includes information on essential supplies, machine set-up, marking, basting, navigating the design, plus time to begin stitching this beautiful project.  Requires:  $6.00 pattern and either the Ivory Sateen kit $22.00 or Willow Radiance kit $25.00.  Must be ordered in advance as students need to prewash, starch, and mark their projects before class.   


Anita Shackelford  
Wednesday, October 26 (9am - 4pm) -- BRODERIE PERSE APPLIQUE -- Take inspiration from a special fabric and design a chintz appliqué block in a style that is traditional or today. Practice both blind stitch and blanket stitch edges.  
Thursday, October 27 (9am - 4pm) -- SPRING BOUQUET -- Create a bouquet of carnation, wildflowers and lily-of-the-valley tied with a bow. Techniques covered are corded stems, stuffed appliqué, two types of ruching, free-form berries and lily-of-the-valley, unit-appliqué ribbon and embroidery embellishment.  
Newcomers Meetings 

The Newcomers Program for April will be held on Tuesday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. at the Urbandale Library. Mary Cecil will talk about creating with color.

Remember to bring any projects you are currently working on. We will try to cover any issues you may be having on a current project.


Come and enjoy "with or without show and tell". All members who joined in 2010 and 2011 are welcome. Other Guild members are also welcome to attend.

Upcoming Meetings:

May 17-Traditional Quilts with JoAnn Belling

June 21-Paper piecing with Sharon Meisenheimer

July 19-Beyond the Block-Scrap Piecing with Rebecca McCreary and Sara Harless

August 16-Machine Quilting with Lynn Witzenberg

Sept 20-Finishing Touches: Binding, Squaring Up and Labels with Shirley Loeffler


If you have any questions, please call Barb at 515-279-2651.    
Barb Smalley, Vice President
Quilt Show News


The 2011 DMAQG is only about 5 months away so we hope you're busy making quilts or other items to enter in this year's quilt show.  The quilt show categories and size parameters were in last month's newsletters and have also been posted to the quilt show section of our website.


Bookmarks and posters that advertise our quilt show have been printed.  If you're going to be traveling to a quilt shop, quilt show, or another event that attracts quilters and would be willing to take some bookmarks or a poster to leave, please contact Donita Fredricks to get a supply of these items.


For our treasured quilts exhibit, we're seeking quilts that reflect the show theme of community. If you have a quilt that was made by a group of quilters for fund raising, to celebrate or commemorate an event or group, etc., please contact Barb Eckoff. We're also seeking photos of quilt groups--they may be older heritage photos or more current photos. If you have such photos, please contact Jill Reber.


Little Quilts: just a reminder that one of our primary fundraisers is the Little Quilts Silent Auction. Please consider making a little quilt to donate to the Guild for our Little Quilts auction.


Some upcoming dates related to the show include:

  *  raffle quilt tickets will be distributed in May

  *  quilt show entry form will be posted to the website on

      May 1

  *  volunteer sign-up will begin in July 

  *  quilt show entry deadline will be July 15


It takes a large number and variety of quilts to ensure a successful quilt show.  Whether you choose to have your quilt judged or not, we need your quilts! 


Martha Henrichs and Kathy Russi



2011 Veterans Quilt Challenge

Thank you to all of you who have donated a veterans quilt or have a veterans quilt in process. Thus far, 25 quilts have been turned in--that's 16% of the 150 quilts we hope to have by October.  We will have additional fabric packets at the April Guild meeting if you'd like to pick up fabric to use in a veterans quilt.  More detailed information regarding the veterans quilts and simple, optional quilt designs are posted on the website.


If you have questions about the veterans quilts, please contact Fern Stewart.



AQS Quilt Deadline Reminder

There is still time to enter your quilt in the AQS Quilt Show & Contest. With 5 categories and over $44,000 in cash awards, everyone should enter the contest! All entries must be postmarked by May 20, 2011.  Click here for more information 


Community Service

I hope you are enjoying spring and perhaps have found some inspiration to work on a project from all the blooming flowers, plants and trees. What a wonderful time of year!


Thank you to the guild members who have contributed to the donation of 17 twin quilts to St. Joseph's Family Shelter. Community Service has made a commitment with the staff to donate 29 twin quilts. Please help us reach our goal. If you have a twin quilt or top you are willing to donate bring it to the next meeting.


Twisted Sister's small group has volunteered to provide a quilt to a child whose parent is serving in the military. The quilt will be presented at the Flag Day ceremony held at the Historical Building in June. Thanks ladies!!


Carolyn Eliason, Chair Community Service




Thank you very much for the lovely quilts and pillowcases. They will be well used. 


St. Joseph Shelter Staff and Guests



Community Service Sewing Day

Community Service Charity Sewing Day was held on April 18 at the Urbandale library from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. We had 16 members attend and we completed 127 pillowcases. 


Pictured below are those who attended: Mildred Agena, Kathie Anderson, Barb Blair, Judy D'Lapico, Carolyn Eliason, Linda Enghausen, Anita Gogerty, Gerry Hingst, Shirley Loeffler, Linda Mould, Joan Rotert, Phyllis Salsbury, Helen Smith, Reta Stone, Deanna Wilson, and Carol Wisnousky. Not pictured is Tamara Deaton.


 2011-april comm serv



We want to thank everyone who participated in our spring retreat.  We think everyone had a good time as the comments were all favorable.  Even the weather smiled upon us.  The scissor sharpening and the machine cleaning were well received.  As usual the massage therapy was a high point for many participants. 

If you attended the spring retreat and are missing your teal blue winter coat, please call Arda at 515-266-4223.  


Please mark November 17 thru 20th on your calendars for the fall retreat.  We hope to see you there.  Thanks again  


Arda Mathern and Margaret Simons

Education Committee 


Photos Needed

To follow the theme of the quilt show this year we are looking for photos, both vintage as well from today, of quilters and groups of quilters.  We hope to gather the photos and put a collage of sorts together showing the community of quilting that is built. 


Please contact me if you have photos that we may use.  If you can, please scan and email photos, or email digital photos to me.  OR you can get me your originals and I will digitize them and return the originals to you.

Feel free to contact me with questions at 515-999-2746 or by E-mail:

To Mail:  Jill Reber, 10481 NW 107th Avenue, Granger IA  50109  

ladies aid


Kids Classes and State Fair Sew-In

Your Education Committee has been hard at work getting ready for a summer of activities.  Our mission as a Guild is to teach people about quilting.  Two of our projects are the Kids Classes and the State Fair Sew-In.  Both of these projects are successful because of the commitment of many Guild members.


You can be involved in a variety of ways.  We need volunteers to help the kids for one or more of the Kids Classes at the public libraries.  The dates of these classes are June 20 and 21 in West Des Moines and July 11 and 12 in Pleasant Hill.


The dates of the State Fair are August 11-21.  We need 5 associates each day to help the fair-goers make quilts for state wide children's charities.


We also need some help getting ready for these events.  We need donations of 2 yard cuts of juvenile fabric to use as backs for both of these programs.  We need donations of 1/2 yard or larger pieces of solid color fabric to use for binding.


We need people willing to work at home.  We need help to cut fabric into strips and bindings.  We will provide you the fabric to cut along with clear directions.


Do any of these opportunities sound good to you?   Contact Sharon at  or 515-986-1145 with questions or to volunteer.  Become an active member of a Community of Quilters.


Sharon Meisenheimer and Jill Reber


2010 President Challenge Winners 


There were 10 entries in the 2010 President's Challenge. We will be showcasing 2 entries each month in the newsletter with a picture of the quilt and the designer along with the inspiration for the quilt in the designer's own words.   


Lynn Randall

To say I dislike winter is a huge understatement.  However, I will admit that winter has its moments of beauty.

Most fascinating to me is the magic of each individual snowflake--how no two are exactly alike.  This, then, was what I decided to do for my "Winter Wonderland" quilt.  A magical thing happened early in designing my quilt, and that was re-discovering the simple pleasure of folding paper and cutting out six-pointed snowflakes as I had once done as a child.

Each day as I worked on this quilt, I liked what was happening.  It was a fun experience from start to finish.

I have been quilting for over 25 years.  Mostly, I am self-taught, but have taken classes over the years to learn various techniques.  By doing this, I have found ways to achieve what I want with each quilt.  The most important thing I have discovered is that I still learn something new with each quilt I make.


 2010 pres challenge-Lynn Randall



Barb Riggs

I have always been drawn to nature and wildlife.  Growing up on a farm near Bedford in southwest Iowa and spending a lot of time in that big back yard has given me a lot of memories to draw from.  You know what they say about you can take the girl out of the country but you can't take the country out of the girl.  While I live in Des Moines, I have an acreage near Osceola and spend a lot of my summer time there using my camera to capture images that I can reference for my work.  After the passing of my husband, my sisters introduced me to quilting and in 2003 I decided to become an art quilter.  Being able to translate those photo images using only commercial fabrics and threads was a challenge I found intriguing.  Looking across a snowy field, your eyes are drawn to things you would normally look past.  The animals are more visible and the stark contrast of the bare trees against the snow, says look at me.  How could I not want to quilt this?


2010 pres challenge-Barb Riggs
barb riggs


"Little Quilts" for 2011 Quilt Show 


It's another year and another quilt show. This year's show is the end of September 2011. We have to move the time table for completion of "little quilts" for the silent auction up to the July meeting. If you attend the August "Charity Auction", then you can turn in your "little quilts" at that time. Like every other year, the Guild depends on the generosity, great skill and creativity of our members to make outstanding "little quilts". These "little quilts" are a main source of income for our Guild. So, once again, we are asking for your help in contributing to the success of our quilt show by making a "little quilt" for the silent auction.  


Leigh Lussie, quilt show member for "Little Quilts"


Guild Member Wins at AQS Show  

Mary Martin won 2nd place at the AQS Lancaster, Pennsylvania show in the category of Appliqued Bed Quilts. This same quilt also won Best of Show at the Iowa State Fair in 2010. The quilt's name is Rylie's Garden and is named after Mary's granddaughter because she loves the color purple!  The quilt was made in a class taught by Angela Lawrence at Creekside Quilting.  Here is the link to view the winning quilts: Rylie's Garden 

Quilter's Garage Sale  


Friday, May 6th and Saturday, May 7th

8:30 am to 6:00 pm


"Mike" Wigg is having a garage sale on May 6 and 7. Her address is 7051 NW 21st Street, Ankeny. This is located SW of Ankeny and NE of Johnston Soccer Fields.

Call Mike at 515-289-2762 if you need directions

Fabric, notions, patterns, trims, antique quilts, P. Buckley Moss, Amish Heritage, count cross stitch, basket weaving supplies and much more will be on sale.


"Patches for Peace" for Tanzania, Africa 


We need to collect the little dresses and shorts and the light weight blankets at the next guild meeting on April 26th. 

If you have questions, please call Gerry Hingst, 278-4337


Thank You 


I really enjoyed my year of being on the Board for Community Service--especially working with Carolyn Eliason. She is such a "doer" and she was a joy to work with!

For those of you that have never served on the Board, I would strongly encourage you to do so--it is a great way to meet more of the wonderful people in our Guild.

I just want to say a big Thank You to all of you that donated the blue fat quarters for me. I'm planning to make a denim and patchwork jacket (after a couple of wedding quilts are completed).


Joan Rotert



Please stop by and visit our new and improved DMAQG website at for information about upcoming quilt shows and other events taking place around the area, our newsletter archive, as well as other useful information.