Dr. Seulter Hypes up the River Country Quilt Show

By Benjamin Cox on July 17, 2019 at 9:05am

Stitch together your weekend plans with quilts filled with different shapes and sizes.

The 15th annual River Country Quilt Show is being held on Friday, July 26 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Saturday, July 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event will be held at Jacksonville High School and admission is six dollars.

At the show, some of the events that will be taking place are quilt appraisals, which come at a cost of 40 dollars and an appointment in advance, a silent auction of textile art items, bed turnings, vendor booths and raffles. Over 250 quilted items will be on display for people to view.

Dr. Barbara Seulter, one of the organizers of the show describes how the art of quilting came about in the first place.

“It was utilitarian. Many of our pioneers would use all the scraps leftover from dresses, from shirts, whatever they had. Anything that was fabric they would usually hand sew all of that together. They would put something in the middle, today we use batting, back then you might find somebody who would put a wool blanket on the back and no backing. Others might put an old blanket in the middle and then put a top on and still put a back on if the original quilt was rather tattered. It had just been loved and used so much to the extent that it was starting to fall apart and so they would put a new top on and a new back on, stitch it all together by hand because back then we did not have sewing machines. Sewing machines showed up in the late 1800’s and so as a result, everything had to be done by hand.”

Due to the numerous ways quilts can be used, Seulter gives advice on the best ways to treat your quilts over time.

“You do not want to let the cat scratch and sharpen her claws on it. You would prefer that you use consideration, but quilts hold up pretty well. All of the seams are all inside so everything is all protected on the inside where the seams would be. However, over time one of the things that people often do not know to do or forget to do, is refold their quilts. I suggest about every six months. Part of what happens is there is pressure that is caused when you fold a piece of fabric and it puts pressure on that fold and so when the quilts will start to age, that is exactly where it will come apart is on the fold.”

Seulter also talks about the oldest quilt that she has seen come through the show.

“In the past, I have had them cleared back to the Civil War. I am not scared to touch them, we have had a quilt or two that was so fragile, we would pin it to a sheet to help support it because just merely holding it up is too much weight for the quilt. So we will pin it to a sheet and that way we can hold it up and it reinforces the quilt so it does not get hurt from hanging it.”

For any additional information, you can contact Dr. Seulter at 217-602-0426, or you can email her at bobarbara79@mchsi.com.