Quilter’s Guild provides much comfort

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 4, 2005

Because of people like Leila Tompert, Emily Dalton and Wendy Phelps, many children in need will have a warm sense of comfort soon.

Thanks to these members and others in the Suffolk Quilter’s Guild, Officer Barbara Wainscott was able to take a load of blankets to the Suffolk Police station Thursday night, where they’ll wait until needed.

As the rest of the roughly 60 club members danced about in leis and other Hawaiian garments at the Lake Prince nursing home commons, Tompert, who’s starting a new term as president, looked over some of the quilts the members had turned out over the past few months.

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&uot;We give them to police to put in their cars,&uot; she said. &uot;If a child is in an accident or other situation, they can use it to hold and comfort themselves.&uot;

Over the evening, about 70 quilts were turned in. Tompert’s, decorated with bright colors and renditions of smiling children, was called the best use of color.

&uot;Off and on, this took me about eight hours,&uot; she said.

On the third Saturday of every month, the group gathers at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church for workshops on quilting topics like turning corners and making colors look good together. On the first Thursday of the month, they meet at the Suffolk Museum on Bosley Avenue to discuss their work.

Dalton has been sewing up quilts since 1978, nine years before the Guild took form. She now teaches quilting at the museum several times a month.

&uot;I don’t ever work on just one quilt,&uot; she said. &uot;I have several at once. Everybody in my family has one. I give them all away, not sell them.&uot;

Diane Alexander, another charter member, enjoys putting together quilts for her grandkids.

&uot;I love to sew, and I like doing projects for other people,&uot; said the retired Obici Hospital nurse. &uot;It’s important to share what you can.&uot;

Phelps, on the other hand, put together a quilt back in the 1980s. But since joining the Guild a few years ago, she’s turned out about 30.

&uot;When I start a project, I just put it together and go for it,&uot; she said.

&uot;Coming to the meetings, you get a lot of inspiration and ideas about what you can do.&uot;

Tompert and several of the other Guild members put together a bundle of blankets for Wainscott.

&uot;I think it’s awesome,&uot; said the officer. &uot;They’re really providing a great service to people that are going through some hard times.&uot;