Valley of the Mist Quilters Guild

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I’m leading off with my workshop participants, all brilliant conversationalists and quilters.

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This past week, I gave a lecture and taught my Merrion Square Workshop to the Valley of the Mist Quilters Guild, a top-notch guild that taught me plenty about how a successful guild functions.

At my workshop, Lupe, an excellent chef and the Workshop Coordinator, brought me a home-made lunch.  We gathered around a table for a break, and I enjoyed hearing stories about how people came to Temecula, California, for there are very few natives here.

Frequent Quilters Card

Here’s an idea for Guilds: a Frequent Quilter Card.  Every time a Guild Member takes a class, the Workshop Coordinator initials their card; when they have taken five classes, they get the sixth one free.  One line I heard over and over at Meet the Teachers was that guilds couldn’t fill their workshop classes.  This would be a great motivator to get people to a workshop, another good idea from this Guld.

 

As with any Guild, finding space to meet for programs and workshops is a challenge, and we met today in a clubhouse, with beautiful roses outside.

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Several days before, on Tuesday, I drove to the Temecula Recreation Center, where the Guild has their monthly meetings.  Above is the Guild President, calling the meeting to order.  After a few announcements, it was my turn. ValleyMistActivities_12

I had the two tables at the back of the stage lined up with my quilts, which– after they were showed–were then draped over the structure at the front of the stage (hard to explain, but no, my quilts weren’t on the floor).

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The Guild Members could come up front to see the quilts for a closer look; very satisfying that they enjoyed my work.  The quilter in the front, Annette, has followed my blog for several years, and came up and introduced herself to me at Road to California a couple of years ago.  (I wrote about that lovely experience up in my journal.) After the break was finished, members scattered to do business at the following tables:

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Workshops.  All the tables have signs, and this one is patch-worky!  Lupe is there (you recognize her from the top of the post), with my quilts, signing up people for my Saturday Workshop.

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Sweets and Treats table.

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Ida is in charge of the Charity Quilts.  Behind her a bags of completed quilts, and in front of her are quilt kits, so people can grab and go and make and return, along with kits for pillowcases (in the bin).  She is very organized!

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These tables are where members lay their Show and Tell.  I noticed that they didn’t include small quilted items such as bags, purses or hot pad holders, which I’ve seen in other guilds.  I enjoyed their Show and Tell Show immensely, loving this plaid quilt.  She said she had a bin of plaid from a few years back (um, I have one of those too) and decided to do something with it.  The people who brought these items would scoop them up and line up on one side of the stage.  When it was their turn to speak, the two ladies on the stage would take the quilt and hand the quilter a microphone, so she could talk about her quilt without having to show it.  A nice piece of choreography.ValleyMistActivities_6

Gloria ran the quilt raffle.  I was tempted by those cookbooks and their newly designed Guild pin.

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Adriene and Shelly (they are sisters) run the block of the month and this year they are doing Improv Blocks.  They call themselves the Blockheads, but trust me, they are witty and fun to talk to (they were also at the Workshop).

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Janice’s Charming Strip Exchange was popular.  This month was Kaffe Fasset fabrics.

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What to do with leftovers?  Make Pet Beds.

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Check out that mini quilt.  Every month they have a Monthly Mini raffle, and I’m sure this month’s quilt — that of the sewing machine — must have been hugely popular!

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Here’s another table that has monthly baskets of sewing supplies, fabrics, magazines–all donated–which the organizers make into cute baskets.  When you buy your tickets, you can grab a candy, plus they give you a small gift:

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While I picked a ticket for one of their door prizes that night (did I mention they had three?), the highly efficient chairmen do the drawings themselves, and present the name to the President for the announcement.

As might have noticed, this post is pretty detailed.  Many of my readers are on the Boards of their local Guilds, and I though I would present these good ideas for them, as well as for those who simply go to Guild meetings.  I love our community, and celebrate the work of Guilds, impressed as always.  Thanks to the Valley of the Mist Quilters Guild for inviting me!

14 thoughts on “Valley of the Mist Quilters Guild

  1. Wow, Elizabeth; thanks for all the sweet comments. We’re so glad you came to our meeting. AND, I had a great time at class, too. Thanks for all the tips about value to help me choose the fabrics for Marion Square. It was a great day!

  2. Not belonging to a Guild, and being a solo quilter, all this is new and fascinating to me! It certainly looks like fun!

  3. It’s always fun to see/learn how other guilds function. This one seems quite organized and large and, most importantly, FUN!!! Thanks for sharing!!

  4. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience and observations about this guild. Do you know how many members they have? Or how many were in attendance? A wonderfully coordinated as all this is, I suspect it’s because they’re dealing with many quilters each month. Love the punch card idea, and also how their show and tell is run. Gosh, as our chapter’s photographer, don’t I know what a hassle it is to get a good photo while someone is holding and talking about their quilt! Such a smart idea to give members the chance to look at quilts before the meeting, and have pre-arranged quilt-holders. I’m so happy for you to have been invited to this guild. You’re the bee’s knees, and now everyone it learning that!

  5. As a Board member for another local guild (IEMQG), this was a wonderful and informative post! I loved all the details and the pictures! I live close to this guild and after reading this I am definitely going to check them out and attend an upcoming meeting!

  6. This looks like fun! How do you know which quild to join? I guess I need to start visiting quilds in my area to see which one is the best fit. Suggestions on what to look for? 🙂

  7. It’s fun to hear about your trunk shows and workshops. They must be a pretty large guild to support so many different things.

  8. I too, want to thank you for the lovely presentation at our guild and this detailed blog post. You were so inconspicuous in taking pictures, I had no idea you could have this much documentation. My only regret is that I couldn’t attend the workshop because we were camping in northern California and just got back yesterday evening. I’m thinking, I just might have to hunt down a future workshop at another guild to attend…..???

  9. Lovely post. The guild name is so pretty – like something out of Anne of Green Gables;). I recognize a lot of similarities to my home guild in MA (Chelmsford Quilt Guild) plus some new good ideas. I love the idea of having show and tell quilts out on tables for perusing and up close viewing. Guilds are great!

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