CCQ instructors enter juried quilt shows

instructor quiltsCCQ instructors are a talented bunch with a wide variety of skills and interests. Two of our instructors are art quilters who have entered their work in juried quilt shows. This means that a panel of judges critiques the quilts for technical excellence as well as creativity. Prizes are awarded in different categories.

Deb Sorem entered her “Under the Autumn Canopy” quilt in the 2013 Pacific West Quilt Show in Tacoma, Washington. Sun, sky and leaf motifs are represented with intricate curved piecing and free motion quilting. Deb works to abstract an image or a theme; in this one, she started with a photo taken looking up through the fall leaves on a tree. The quilt measures 41″ x 30″.

Sherri Culver’s entry in the 2013 International Quilt Festival/Houston show is titled “Emmy Tovo” and won third place in the Art-People, Portraits, and Figures category. When making a portrait quilt, Sherri starts with a photograph which she manipulates in PhotoShop. Sherri’s technique involves hundreds of tiny pieces of fabric that she appliques with a narrow satin stitch. Sherri’s quilt measures 29″ x 21″. You might want to visit her website to see pictures of more of her amazing quilts.

Martha Messa named CCCF Volunteer of the Quarter

Martha Messa was named Volunteer of the Quarter by Coffee Creek Correctional FacilityCoffee Creek Correctional Facility has named our own Martha Messa as Volunteer of the Quarter. Martha has been a CCQ instructor since 2004. She’s also our Program Coordinator and, in that role, serves as liaison between prison staff and Coffee Creek Quilters. In addition, Martha addresses a wide variety of instructor and student needs: making sure the classes are full and adequately staffed; arranging for instructor training; and making sure we have the fabric, tools, and supplies we need. We’ve been only half joking when we’ve told Martha that she’s so important to our program that she has the Coordinator job for life. Here’s an excerpt of what CCCF Superintendent Heidi Steward said in her congratulatory letter:

“Congratulations on being selected Volunteer of the Quarter for the third quarter of 2013. You are being recognized for the outstanding contributions you have made to the Coffee Creek Correctional Facility. Since 2004, our facility has been greatly enriched by your volunteer efforts as a driving force in the implementation and on-going success of the Coffee Creek Quilting Program. As the Program Coordinator of Coffee Creek Quilters, you coordinate outside fundraising to ensure this program has all the supplies needed to continue being successful. In addition to the Quilting Program, you have also volunteered at our annual “Through a Child’s Eyes” summer event. Martha, we are very appreciative of everything you do to provide these wonderful services to the women of Coffee Creek. Thank you again for your energy, compassion, and dedication as a volunteer at our facility.”

CCCF recognized Martha with a letter, a certificate, and a trophy with her name engraved on it. To his credit, Martha’s husband said he always knew he had a trophy wife and now he has proof.

A thank-you message from a student

thank you Each student who completes our program is eligible to receive a “release kit” which includes a used sewing machine, cutting mat, rotary cutter, miscellaneous sewing tools, along with fabric and instructions to make a quilt. We recently received a thank-you note from Michele L., who received a release kit when she left Coffee Creek Correctional Facility.

Here’s an excerpt from Michele’s note:

I was released in June of 2011 and I went to live with my parents. I have just recently gotten my own place and the first thing I did was set up a room so I could begin quilting again. I would like Deb to know that the time I spent quilting with her at Coffee Creek was the only time I felt like myself when I was there. Upon my release, she gave me a bag filled with quilting supplies, fabric, instructions, a cutting mat, cutter, and various other sewing supplies. What a generous gift!! I so appreciate it and with those supplies, I was able to start quilting again. Thank you, Thank you!

I also want Deb to know that my granddaughter really liked the heart quilt I made her while at Coffee Creek. I still do not get to see her very often but it makes me feel good that I was able to take something beautiful from my time at Coffee Creek and give it to her.

Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to feel like a worthwhile human being.