New Ulm Quilt Show returns this year for 8th show

Laura Gulden’s (left) quilt ,“Farmhouse,” was made through a class at The Thimble Box and designed by Brenda Seidl. It will be given to Laura’s son and daughter-in-law for Christmas.

NEW ULM — After 2020’s cancelation due to the COVID-19 shutdowns, the New Ulm Quilt Show is back this year for its eighth show.

The New Ulm Quilt Show, presented by the Prairie Piecemakers Quilt Guild and held every other year, will take place at the New Ulm Event Center on April 8 and 9 and costs $8 for adults and $4 for students ages 12 and up. Friday’s show will be from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., while Saturday’s showing will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Prairie Piecemakers is an organization full of quilt lovers, novices and experts alike who share their love of fabric, design, color and the finished product. The Guild, formed in 1994, currently has 77 members that meet at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church the second Thursday each month at 7 p.m. from September through May.

While the 2020 New Ulm Quilt Show was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Guild is excited to welcome quilt enthusiasts from all over back for the two-day show.

Several Guild members said that they found it harder to stay motivated with quilting after the pandemic shut things down and canceled the 2020 show.

Patty Tauer (left) sewed this mystery quilt at a guild class. The quilt pattern was designed by guest teacher, Susie Webster.

“In my case, it [COVID-19] made me [quilt] less because I was very upset with having to cancel our last show,” Guild member Mary Ann Wolf said. “And I just had to walk away from quilting. On the other hand, there are many members that dove into quilting because they couldn’t go anywhere through the pandemic.”

Guild members Mary Jean Janni and Sylvia Aufderheide agreed with Wolf.

“If you talked to people down at the quilt shops, they were very busy during this pandemic time,” Janni said. “I must say, I too kind of stopped quilting for a while. Part of it was that I found a lot of good books to read [laughs].”

“I don’t know if I produced more or not, I know a lot of people did, a lot of my friends did,” Aufderheide said. “I didn’t do so much, I think I went more into reading. But not having that quilt show was disappointing and you don’t get that inspiration. Once our meetings started again, then you get more inspired and you hang out with other quilters.”

Patty Haala, Prairie Piecemakers Quilt Guild President, said the pandemic led to her finishing more quilts.

Karen Paa (left) shows her mystery quilt.

“I made many more quilts,” Haala said. “I got caught up from a lot of stuff.”

Regardless of The Guild’s motivation and inspiration in 2020, the members are certainly motivated and looking forward to having a show full of events and avid quilters back this year.

There will be at least 400 quilts on display at the show this year with two big rooms full of quilts. The show isn’t “judged”, but it’s an event to share the love of quilting and inspire others to join in the fun of quiltmaking.

While the show isn’t judged, New Ulm Mayor Terry Sveine and his wife Elle, as well as other vendors and the guest speaker, Doug Leko, will be awarding ribbons to their favorite quilts. The ribbons are handmade by members of The Guild.

Leko is a quilt designer and teacher from Osseo, MN, that has been quilting since age 6 and founded Antler Designs at age 14 in 2008. Leko has also published more than 20 books and 100 patterns and will be giving a presentation and trunk show at 2 p.m. on Friday and 11 a.m. Saturday down the hallway at the back of the Event Center.

Laura Gulden (left) finished her mystery quilt within a month. She has a rule of finishing a project before beginning another.

Alice Forst will be the featured quilter at the show this year. Forst started sewing on a treadle machine when she was 8 years old. About 100 of her quilts have been gifted to children, grandchildren and friends. She’s also a founding member of The Guild and has taught many quilt classes, sharing her knowledge and passion for quilting.

In addition to that, the show will have raffles, vendor booths and many demonstrations.

The vendors this year include New Ulm’s Spinning Spools Quilt Shop, The Thimble Box and Sewing Seeds Quilt Co. In addition, Clara City’s Shades of The Past Quilt Shop, Montgomery’s The Quilters Dream, Inver Grove Heights’ Irish Chain, Jordan’s Lori A Market and Jordan’s Tracy Trevethan Designs are vendors.

In the past, the show has drawn close to 1,000 visitors from Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota and Nebraska. The Guild expects a similar response this year as The Guild’s reputation and talent of the members has grown.

Please visit www.newulmquiltshow.com for more information on this year’s show.

Mary Jean Janni’s (right) mystery quilt.

The Prairie Piecemakers Quilt Guild is also always looking for new quilt enthusiasts to join The Guild. If interested in becoming a member, please visit www.newulmquiltshow.com and click on the ‘Guild Info’ link near the top of the page.

While quilting requires a lot of time and dedication, Aufderheide said that it’s a rewarding hobby to take up.

“It’s called fabric therapy, sewing therapy, it makes you feel good,” Aufderheide said. “When you get part of it put together that gives you a positive and when somebody comes to see it and says, ‘Oh, that looks really good,’ you’re inspired.”

Mary Ann Wolf’s (left) mystery quilt.

Laura Gulden (left) sewed a Christmas quilt from a pattern to be sold at the quilt show. The pattern, “Lisa’s Favorite Christmas Quilt” was designed by Lisa Schwarz and Val Besser.

A look at one of the Prairie Piecemakers Quilt Guild meetings, which is held at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church the second Thursday each month at 7 p.m. from September through May.


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