Des Moines Area Quilters Guild
In This Issue
Upcoming Program
2011 President's Challenge
Upcoming 2011 Workshops
Newcomers Meetings
Memorial for Barb Snuggs
Crazy Quilt Marathon
Special Group Meetings
Spring Retreat
Quick Links

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Upcoming Program

At our next guild meeting on Tuesday, January 25, we welcome Sue Spargo. Sue was born in Zambia and received her education and trained to be a nurse in South Africa.  She then moved to England where the shift between two very different cultures and environments continues to influence her designs.  In 1989 she moved again, this time to the United States.  She has lived in Connecticut, Tennessee, Utah, and now Ohio.  These experiences combined to create in her a love of 'primitive art' which is portrayed in her quilting designs.


The afternoon lecture topic will be "Finding Your Creativity."


The evening lecture topic will be "Travel Journals".


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


Flower Basket Supply List


Board Members and Committee Chairs
Download a PDF of contact information for board members and committee chairs

Financial Statement

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Financial Statement:


Financial Statement


 Newsletter Issues
Piecetime Programs
January 2011

Happy New Year!


It's hard to believe we are starting a new year again!  I hope everyone had great holidays and time to spend with family and friends.  The December Tea was a wonderful way to kick off the Christmas Season for me.  Great Friends, Laughter, Wonderful Treats, Review of Accomplishments, Beautiful Quilts, Kick-off for 2011, and just Lots of Fun! 


I have been working with the President's Challenge Quilts today and how awesome it is to see them through a camera lens.  All 10 entries were outstanding and so inspirational.  It shows that as quilters we keep our eyes sharp on the surroundings around us from Granddaughters entranced with snow falling outside the window, tatted snowflakes, building snowmen, and observing our Iowa wildlife and natural surroundings.  I have taken pictures of all 10 which we will include in the February newsletter and also on the website.  The 8 finalists for the AQS entry are Anita Gogerty, Barb Riggs, Judy D'Iapico, Mildred Agena, Jan Hall, Lynn Randall, Bridgett Lottman, and Pat Weber.  I would love to have all who entered send me a short description of what inspired their quilts, the methods or classes they used, and a little bit about their quilting background (I was very excited a new member took the plunge and entered--what a great show of strength!). 


The board had their first meeting of the year and what a great year we are going to have based on discussions we had.  As last year, this board isn't letting any snow melt or grass grow under their feet.  I am not going to take away others' thunder but we did get a glimpse at an example of the 2011 Quilt Show Challenge and the Festival of Trees quilts being completed.  Both are fantastic and will be a treat for you to see.  We went through the budget and once that is final we will be publishing it for your review.  Many THANKS to Carolyn Eliason for hosting us at her home and to Gerry Hingst for having details ready for the 2011 budget discussion.    As always, please call a board member if you have any questions or concerns.   


THANKS for everything you do for the Guild.  It would not be the same without you. Be sure to invite your friends--we have great speakers and it is a great time of sharing.  I look forward to seeing you in January with Sue Spargo. 


Diane Thiese---President

2011 President's Challenge


The 2011 President's Challenge is "Uffda".  For those of you who are not Norwegian or a Norwegian "Want-A-Be" here is the Wikipedia definition:

"Uff da is often used in the Upper Midwest as a term for sensory overload. It can be used as an expression of surprise, astonishment, exhaustion, relief and sometimes dismay."


I will have more examples as we go through the year!  Coming from Decorah, we have a lot of fun with this term and hope you will to!


The rules for the challenge are as follows:


Finished quilt size: 40"x30" (horizontal).

The quilt may be pieced, appliqued, painted, stenciled, or embellished in any manner

The finished quilt must consist of three layers.

The quilt must be constructed and quilted by one person.

Quilts must be finished (quilted and bound) and hung at the December 2011 Tea, where guild members will vote for the top eight to be entered into the AQS Ultimate Guild Challenge. 


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).

Happy New Year!  Hopefully your new year is shaping up to be one of your best quilting years ever.  We have a great slate of teachers lined up to assist you in trying new techniques or perhaps to fine tune skills you already possess.   All workshops currently have room for additional  participants so please  look over the classes listed below and sign up to reserve your spot now, especially for the January and February workshops.  You may mail, email ,or call in your reservation.  And of course, we will be taking reservations at our meetings on Tuesdays.  Val Russell's email is  or call Val at 641-447-2411.



January'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.


Sue Spargo  

Wednesday, January 26 (9am - 4pm) -- ALTERED TEXTURE FLOWER BASKET -- Uses hand dyed wools.  Add embellishments to give it personality. You will need to stitch a little appliqué down before class so you will need to pick up the $32 kit at the Guild meeting before the class so some work can be done prior to class.  

 If you are interested in this workshop, send in the registration information as soon as possible.  I will be in Des Moines Tuesday, the 18th,  Thursday, the 20th, and Friday the 21st and will bring your kit with me so you can work on it ahead of time.

Thursday, January 27 (9am - 4pm) --
TWO BIRDS FROM MAGNOLIA -- The workshop will focus on the two birds block of Sue's Magnolia quilt.  She uses hand dyed wools for many of her quilts.  Requires a $32 kit (this is NOT the same as Wednesday's class kit).



Elsie Campbell

Wednesday, February 23 (9am - 4pm) -- FUN WITH FLOWERS -- Turn scraps into an appliquéd floral medallion wall quilt. Paper-backed fusible webbing makes it easy.  Your imagination makes it beautiful.  Fun With Flowers supply list:  

Thursday, February 24 27 (9am - 4pm) -- SEEING STARS?!!!
-- Piece perfect stars with pointers from Elsie. She shares secrets for preventing belly-button centers and pin-wheeling points. From cutting and stitching to pressing and setting in triangles and squares, this class covers it all!  Seeing Stars supply list: 


 Rose Hughes  
Wednesday, March 23 (9am - 4pm) -- DOUBLE- QUILT APPLIQUE -- In this workshop you will learn two machine applique techniques that are not only easy to achieve but will open new doors to your creativity.

Thursday, March 24 (9am - 4pm) -- WHAT's ON TOP? EMBELLISHMENT!  -- In this class we'll explore the varied and delightfully creative forms embellishments can take in our work, and how you can use them to add drama, whimsy, character and sparkle to your quilts.



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 January will be held on Tuesday, January 18 at 6:30 p.m. at the Urbandale Library.  Barb Smalley will present a program on the history of quilting and Amish quilts.

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.  If you have any questions, please call Barb at 515-279-2651.    
Barb Smalley, Vice President 
Memorial for Barb Snuggs


As you are all aware, Barb Snuggs, 2010 Quilt Show co-chair, passed away early this winter. For her Appreciation Gift as a retiring Board Member, Barb had requested signed hatchet blocks using batik fabric.


We would like to honor Barb's memory by asking that you donate a signed hatchet block using batik fabric of any color. We have a member who has volunteered to make the donated blocks into a quilt. The quilt will be displayed at the 2011 quilt show and then will be given to Barb's family. Barb loved the quilt show and would be pleased that her quilt will be seen by so many others.


Please consider taking a few minutes to make a block in honor of Barb. You can bring your completed block to the January or February meetings and drop it off at the Community Service table. Thanks in advance for your contributions.


Directions for 4" finished hatchet block:

Cut the following for each block:

Background - one 4 1/2" square

Batik fabric - two 2 1/2" squares

Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the wrong side of each of the batik squares. Place one on a corner of the background square. Sew on the drawn line. Square up. Repeat on the opposite corner. Use a permanent marker to sign your block.


Crazy Quilt Marathon 


We have been contacted by a representative of the Department of Cultural Affairs at the Iowa State Historical Museum. They will be having a Crazy Quilt exhibit in February and on Saturday, February 5 they will have a Crazy Quilt Marathon from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. People who are interested will be assigned a group to work with and make a crazy quilt in that time period. You are asked to bring a sewing machine and fabrics to share. The quilts will be donated to foster children in the Des Moines Area.


If you are interested, please contact Maureen Korte by e-mail or call her at 515-281-4132. It sounds like it could be a fun day and another wonderful way to reach out to those in need.  


Evening Applique Society
The Society invites anyone who loves to applique, whether by hand or machine, to come and join the group. It doesn't matter if you're an experienced or beginner appliquer. We meet at the Quilt Block on the third Thursday of each month at 6:30 p.m. We also get together just to have fun and learn from each other.  Any questions please contact Jeannie Murphy at or 515-440-2160.


1800s Quilt Study Group
The 1800s Quilt Study Group always meets the fourth Thursday of the month at The Quilt Block at 6:30 p.m. Our next meeting is January 27. The study topic will be strippy quilts and we will be discussing our auction project. Please bring ideas for a 9" finished block befitting an 1800s reproduction quilt to the meeting. All members interested in participating in the project need to let Kimber know by the January meeting. Please note that meetings are an informal exchange of ideas and information--no formal presentations are expected. Any questions, contact Kimber at or 515-993-4005.
Spring Retreat


Join us March 17-20 for the Guild's spring retreat at Camp Wesley Woods.  Registration opens January 15 and the form can be found on the Guild's website by clicking here.  You can also register at the guild meetings in January or February.  Registration for housing is on a first-come, first serve basis so register early.  


Gayla Wasson will be giving table massages at the retreat. The cost for a 30 minute massage is $30.  Please contact Gayla directly to schedule your massage time by calling her at home 641-755-4499 or cell phone 515-360-3454 or by e-mail at


If you have any questions, please call Margaret Simons at 256-0077 or Arda Mathern at 266-4223. We look forward to seeing you at the retreat. 


Arda and Margaret 


The following items were left behind at the Fall Retreat:


     electric cord for a sewing machine
     wooden stileto

If any of these items belong to you, please check at the Retreat table at the January guild meeting or call Arda Mathern at 266-4223 or Margaret Simons at 256-0077.



Remember to check out the DMAQG website for information such as upcoming quilt shows and other events taking place around the area, as well as other useful information.