News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Quilters help provide scholarships for high school students

Since 2007, quilters who participate in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show have turned their talents to helping others.

The Wish Upon A Card Fundraiser & Fabric Challenge started as a partnership with the St. Charles Foundation/Wendy’s Wish (Wendy’s Wish disbanded in 2015). The Wish Upon A Card Program continued, with proceeds supporting the SOQS Scholarship Program benefiting Sisters High School students.

Quilters from all over the United States and instructors of Quilter’s Affair, an educational workshop program that happens during the five days that precede the SOQS, donate stunning fabric postcards — and some take part in the Fabric Challenge, using fabrics donated by Robert Kaufman fabrics. Fabric postcards begin with basic guidelines and can be as creative as the artist wants to be.

The fabric postcards that the instructors from Quilters Affair and winners of the challenge craft are framed and/or matted and are auctioned during Quilter’s Affair. Additionally, non-framed cards are also available for purchase.

This year, SOQS will be posting these miniature pieces of artwork online for sale on their website. There will be over 250 cards available for purchase. Wish Cards arrive in the mail for SOQS from all over the United States, and they have over 70 quilters taking part this year.

Since the beginning, High Desert Frameworks! in Bend has sponsored the program and Myrna Dow has matted and framed cards for auction.

Dawn Boyd, SOQS executive director, said, “This year, we are excited to not only have High Desert Frameworks! helping once again, but we are also welcoming Clearwater Gallery and Wildflower Studios to our Wish Team of framers/sponsors.”

Since 2015 Kathy Jasper, a Beaverton resident, has volunteered for SOQS; no job too small. In 2017 she added The Wish Upon a Card Fundraiser to her many volunteer positions at the show.

Jasper noted, “When I signed up as a volunteer for the quilt show and met Ginny Hall and Kathy Miller and all the other volunteers, they made me feel like we had been friends forever and I’ve been involved ever since. I take a vacation from my job during the week of the Quilter’s Affair and have volunteered for Wish Upon a Card sales during the Quilter’s Affair and the day of the quilt show. I am fortunate that the company that I work for will pay qualified charitable organizations for the hours that we volunteer. All my time spent making cards is also part of the time I can claim. So, I try to stay busy to maximize what I can earn for SOQS.”

Jasper has also been quilting for 15 years.

She added, “I was curious about quilting, but I had determined that I didn’t have the space in my house. But after my partner got me a fancy sewing machine for my birthday, I experimented with a baby quilt for a neighbor. After the first quilt, I was hooked.”

Jasper’s friend, Marion Shimoda, who was the featured fiber artist in Clearwater Gallery in 2018, was the catalyst in convincing her to attend the SOQS and to begin creating Wish Upon a Card postcards.

“I made my first card for The Wish Upon A Card Program in 2014. In 2015, I received an honorable mention, and second place in 2018 and 2020, and first place in 2019,” Jasper explained. “For me just to have a card selected for framing feels like a win.”

Longtime fans of SOQS, Jill Huntington and her family have attended the annual show since 1996. Huntington, a quilter, lives in Portland with her husband and four grown kids.

“I made my first quilt as a wedding gift for my husband back in 1995. Serendipitously, I found the quilt pattern called Autumn Pines in a book by Jean Wells, ‘Patchwork Quilts Made Easy.’ I first learned about SOQS from Jean’s book, which included photos and information about the event. It became a must-go-to, although we missed the quilt show that year because my husband and I were having a summer wedding on the second Saturday in July!”

This is the first year Huntington donated a fabric postcard to The Wish Upon A Card Fundraiser & Fabric Challenge. She displayed quilts in the SOQS in 2018 and 2019.

Huntington said, “I wanted to get involved with The Wish Upon A Card Program as a way of contributing to the show and to the SOQS Scholarship Fund for the Sisters Outlaws high school students. Also, I had never made a fabric postcard before, so I was eager to try something new and to challenge myself to make a design given a hand-selected collection of fabrics.”

Huntington’s postcard design for 2020, “Something Good in Every Day,” features a vase of flowers set on a neutral background.

She said, “My inspiration came from Kaffe Fassett designs in which he uses vases as a motif. In my collection of low-volume fabrics, I found a neat fabric with words on it that seemed so appropriate for our current times. The fabric reads, ‘Every day may not be good, but there is something good in every day!’ When I created the postcard, I centered those words on the top of the postcard design.”

The Huntingtons are also the creative team behind Huntington Quilt Design on Instagram, and are members of the Portland Modern Quilt Guild.


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