It’s all about cut and sew, cut and sew

These quilts are but a few of the beautiful quilts made by the ladies of Gustav Adolph church in Strathcona. Shown left to right are: Connie Westlund, Karen Nelson Joan Dvergsten, and LaVon Coltom. (photo by Mavis Gonshorowski)

The art of quilt making dates back to the early settlers … when times were tough and every salvageable piece of material was carefully used to make items for the purpose of keeping people warm. By the early 1900’s, quilting was changing from a necessary art into a creative one.

One group of ladies who continue the tradition of quilt making are those of the Gustav Adolph church in Strathcona, Minn.

The biting wind was cold the afternoon of our visit – snow was being blown across the highway from nearby fields making for icy spots in places. Even so, that didn’t keep four die-hards from fulfilling their afternoon plans.

“There used to be several more ladies who would come to quilting, but now we’re down to six and two weren’t able to come today,” Karen Nelson commented.

LaVon Coltom, Joan Dvergsten, and Connie Westlund were busy sorting quilt pieces, pinning the quilt tops, lining, and bottom layers together, and securing the layers in place by hand tying.

Karen was manning the sewing machine as it merrily hum-m-m-ed along. Her job was to put the final touches on each quilt by stitching the three layers around the quilts’ perimeter together.

“We cut and sew the piece tops for quilts at home,” they explained. “We also make one-piece top quilts. Most years we make over 100 quilts!”

A lot of the quilts are donated to Lutheran World Relief, to church and community members who go to nursing homes, to Care and Share in Crookston, to Violent Intervention project in Thief River Falls, Trails to Treatment, and various benefits. Quilts were recently donated to six families who were living in an apartment building in Argyle, Minn., when a fire occurred.

Quilting is held every Thursday beginning in October, continuing to the end of May.

To see the complete story, read the February 12 issue of The Tribune in print or online.

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