Have you heard about quilt guilds and wondered what it would be like joining one?
A quilt guild is a group of quilters that meet on a regular basis to discuss quilting, host workshops, and often do works for various charities.
In discussing quilt guilds, I noticed many people assume there is some sort of criteria to belong. There isn’t any and no one will judge your quilting skills or lack thereof – you just have to love quilting!
Guilds are different than sewing groups or bees in that there is a yearly membership and there are guidelines or bylaws, mostly because a guild is often a registered non profit organization.
A regular meeting usually has a guest speaker to discuss some aspect of quilting. It could be various techniques, a showcase of quilts someone has made, or a number of members showing quilts on a planned theme. It is also jokingly referred to as a support group.
After the main meeting program, a guild might have a giveaway draw for fat quarters, committee discussions, and finish up with a show and tell. The sow and tell is often the most exciting because you get to see what other members are working off, and also show other quilters what you’ve been doing.
Many guilds do charity work and have a special committee to track donations of materials and organizations that may need donations of finished good. Some things I have seen done are mats for pet shelters, bibs for nursing home residents, placemats for in home meal delivery, and full quilts for people in crisis. It could be anything, and any skill level is appreciated.
Guilds often put on quilt shows to showcase work done by the members. These shows often aren’t judged and there are no criteria for entering a quilt in the show, mostly that you are a member of that guild.
Being in a guild gives you access to workshops held by guild members who wish to share their skills, or classes by professional teachers that have been brought in by the guild committees.
A guild is a great way to connect face to face with other quilters in your area, and to get to know new people. There are small guilds with a few dozen members, and large guilds with over a hundred members.
I’m in a community with numerous guilds and am lucky to belong to TWO guilds. They have many similarities, but each group has its own spirit.
If you are looking to join a quilt guild in your area, a Google or Facebook search should help show any near you. You can also ask at your local quilt shop or fabric store – they usually have the pulse of local quilters and know what’s going on.