NETTIE YOUNG, 92, the last surviving original member of the Gee's Bend quilting bee, speaks about how the CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT was wrapped in the fabric of these quilts. THE FREEDOM QUILTING BEE was born in 1966, during the last years of the movement. "Y'all don't know where I came from, and I want people to know where I came from," she said. "I enjoyed it - I really did. I thank GOD from what I've come through. If y'all don't know what BLESSED is, this is BLESSED."

boy or girl friendly quilt

Love two colour quilts

Free Motion Quilt Tutorial-Swirls

Martha Pettway, "Housetop"—"Half-Log Cabin" variation, 1930s, Cotton, 81 x 74 inches

Quilting Bee

a vintage quilting bee

Quilting Bee

Gwen Magee at work on her abstract design Bolero. An extraordinary artist working in fiber, Magee (1943–2011) produced powerful abstract and narrative works in the medium of quilts. Magee's art, which she came to in midlife, was informed by her childhood in a creative home, her education in the social sciences, participation in the civil rights movement, careers in social work and business, and her experiences as a wife, mother, and grandmother.

“The Quilting Bee, 19th Century Americana" is one of the “Epic Paintings” (named that due to their complexity) by artist Morgan Weistling, size 44 x 64 inches. Winner of the Artist's Choice Award and the Patron's Choice Award 2007 at the Masters of the American West show, Autry Museum #Weistling #pioneer #Autry #Americana #quilt #women #children

Through those generations, the women of Gee's Bend have taught their daughters to quilt. However, isolated culturally and geographically from other communities, they developed distinctive and sophisticated techniques with little outside influence. Their quilting style is based on traditional American and African quilts, but with a geometric simplicity likened to modern art. To piece together their quilts, the women salvaged any material they could find — from feed sacks to old work clothes.

Gees Bend Quilters

quilting bee

quilt bee

Quilting bee

Quilting is my therapy

Quilt Bee

Quilting bee

Estelle Witherspoon served as the first manager of the Freedom Quilting Bee, and her home served as the base for the group.

Remember, people will see your quilts long after you are gone....NOT your housework!

Kim Diehl