By ANDREA VARGO
Three ladies from Howard Lake, Ann Horstmann, Joyce Jagodzinski, and Nancy Diers, keep their sewing skills honed.
They are either experienced quilters, or they are just beginning to enter the land of many stitches.
Horstmann is the experienced one of the three. She said, "I've sewn since I was in the sixth grade."
When she had kids, she started making baby quilts and soon graduated to twin-size quilts.
"I think it is relaxing," she said.
The most difficult quilt she made was for her sister-in-law. She wore the first one out, and then asked me to do a lover's knot pattern.
This pattern is on the diagonal, and she said she had to read every bit of instruction for it.
It took a long time to finish. The worst part is her husband wants one now.
Her husband gets a little nervous when she sews, so he doesn't get to watch often.
She told him the story of her great-grandmother, who was showing the kids how to sew on a treadle machine.
As she spoke, she sewed into her finger. Without saying anything more, she calmly backed the needle out of her finger and went on with the lesson.
One of the wall hangings pictured at the right caused her a bit of a problem.
"I ripped one of the leaves out three times, and there was hardly any materiel left to sew," she said.
One of the most fun quilts she worked on was one she made for some friends in the Army.
"I made an outline of the state of Minnesota on a green sheet and added cows, corn, trees, snow flakes, fish, and area lakes and towns.
Nancy Diers went to a quilt show in Dassel during Red Rooster Days.
"I just want to learn. I bought some material, so I should get busy and do something," she said.
Trying to keep herself from going too fast, Diers has decided to start small with a wall hanging.
Joyce Jagodzinski would like to quilt, because she thinks it should be relaxing.
"There was this 85-year-old lady who just finished a star quilt, so I guess there is hope for me yet," she said.
Members of the Sew Friendly Quilt Guild met last Monday at the Norseman Restaurant in Cokato to share some instruction on their craft, some quilt block exchanges, and plans for future meetings, said Karen McKeon, guild member.
Some of those plans include a January meeting at the Cotton Shop in Hutchinson, a tour of Lynette Jenson's company, Thimbleberries, a raffle, a quilt show, and a silent auction sometime next summer, said McKeon.
Anyone can visit the meetings, she said. There is no pressure to join, and the guild already has 42 members in the four months it has been in operation.
McKeon sends out a monthly newsletter and a reminder for members of what to bring to the next meeting.