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A Thursday afternoon Sewing Circle which has become the present day Quilting Group has existed in Westminster United Church since WW I ( a scant two years after the present building was completed). Through many decades this group provided hundreds of quilts, layettes, afghans, knitted hats, mitts & scarves to needy people, all over the world. For example in 1937, 25 quilts given to the ‘needy; in 1942 26 quilts and 48 “warm garments” shipped overseas and another 6 quilts sent to fresh air camps; in 1943 30 quilts and afghans sent to the Red Cross to be part of their V(ictory) bundles and 19 layettes and many knitted garments were distributed in Winnipeg. Westminster women sent their crafted items to Europe, Korea, Angola, to small communities in Northern Manitoba, and locally to the Christmas Cheer Board, Stella Avenue Mission and as close to home as Mulvey School.

Since the 1980’s the central group has limited its efforts to quilting, Today’s quilting is done-to-order. Privately owned quilt tops are brought in and the group creates the finished quilt for a fee which is donated to the church.

Recently, knitting became the activity of choice for many volunteers, working at home and in church. They have continued to produce mitts, scarves etc. for the Christmas season mitten tree. Another group of knitters was formed in 2005 to produce prayer shawls.

Few historic names have been recorded of the women taking part in this activity over the years. One person, Mrs. James McKenzie set a record in 1966 when she turned in 39 pairs of men’s socks – at the age of 99. Another, Mrs. Dorothy Russell was the leader of the group in 1990 but had been a quilter since 1955, a service record of 35 years. Names of participants which might resonate with some Westminster families to this day were Ruby Storey, Emma McIvor, Eleanor Connolly, Alma MacFarlane, Jessie Bragg, Jessie Riddell, Barbara Duval, Nancy Defoe, Lorna Esdale, Kay Flood, Carol McBride, Marjorie Roberts, and Winnie Christie.

 

  The Sewing Circle
Front - Danielle Shannon, Janice Anderson, Marilyn Huband, Alice Nichol, Mary Buchanan, Kim Leafloor
Back - Debbie Gerard Marjory Harvey, Pam McLeod-Arnould, Val McIntyre, Joan Jarvis, Margaret Hodson, Anne Love
   
  Danielle Shannon, Janice Anderson, Val McIntyre, Alice Nichol, Mary Buchanan
 
   
  Kim Leafloor with her shawl
 
   
  Linda Campbell, Janice Anderson
 
   
  Knitter Julie McGinnis
 
   
   
  The Quilting Group
  Jo Hewett-Nikkel & Carmel Wilkins
 
   
  Pat Richtik, Carol Ellis,& Dilly Burns
 
   
  Pat Thomson & Judy Stewart
 
   
  Sonya Wright, Dilly Burns & Carol Ellis
 
   
  The Lois Hird Quilt-2006
 
   
  The Lorna Waddington Quilt-2006

The printed fabric in this quilt dates from the 1930’s, a gift at that time to Lorna
(Esdale) Waddington. Lorna passed it on to the women of the Westminster United
Church Quilting group who used these antique pieced blocks to create a quilt to
hang in the narthex of the Church. The quilt has been framed and was hung on
Thursday, January 18, 2007.

The women who created this quilt are Grace Aoki, Gwen Borsos, Dilly Burns,
Pat Drewett (tea convener), Carol Ellis, Jo Hewett-Nikkel, Dawn McKeag,
Pat Richtik, Pat Thomson, Cathy Squair, Lorna Waddington, Sonya C Wright.

 
   


 

 

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