The Pew Quilt Show

Rock Hill, South Carolina has a Come See Me Festival every spring and this year one of the events was The Pew Quilt Show.  This was not a quilt show about blue ribbons and grand prize winners, although I’m sure many of these quilts have won or could win them! This was a show about the quilts and their stories.

The Pew Quilt Show displayed the quilts draped over Pews

The Quilts were displayed draped over pews and a path was marked for you to follow. The cards at the ends of the pew cleverly faced the direction traffic flowed – you can see in the above picture the ones on the right have writing on the front and the ones on the left have writing on the other side as traffic comes up the isle.

People in the congregation and community cleaned out their attics, closets and cedar chests to share these quilts and the stories behind them.  It was delightful to see how quilting has evolved as a craft by seeing the quilts from all different decades. The earliest quilts were hand quilted and later ones were machine quilted.

It was fun to see the tried and true familiar patchwork patterns. There was this Flower Basket quilted in the early 1900’s.

And several Grandmother’s Flower Gardens- all hand quilted. I had to smile at the hexagons so popular today in modern quilting!

This treasure, a nine-patch Postage Stamp from around 1900, is a perfect example of how quilters of that day used every scrap of fabric they could get their hands on. Today we look for “stash-busting” projects to use up our fabric!

Another classic pattern– the double wedding ring.

I believe these next two are versions of the Dahlia and Dahlia Star patterns…

And what show would be complete without Sunbonnet Sue! Love the embroidery on this one!

This is the first quilt of someone’s grandmother who was a teenager in the 1920’s when she made the quilt.

One of the oldest quilts was this gorgeous crazy quilt- a popular style at the time from 1884. It was made for the marriage of the owner’s great-grandmother. Every panel is different and the embroidery is incredible.

Adding hand embroidery is a popular trend in quilting today so I must share these two quilts featuring embroidery. Series of images were a popular trend to be made into quilts. Such as dolls from around the world……


and birds. It took the maker 8 years to embroider all 50 state birds –mostly done while she watched her 6 children at swim meets!

There were modern masterpieces at the show too.

This cathedral window quilt is amazing and the story behind it shared by the owner is one I think many of us can relate to:

My sister made this for me. I love to do stained glass as a hobby. She said it reminded her of my stained glass. She made it while binge watching seasons 1-6 of 24.  She calls it her “24” quilt.

The quilt below was made in 2011. It is from the book, “The Civil War Love Letter Quilt: 121 Quilt Blocks inspired by Love and War.” All 121 blocks were paper pieced, then hand quilted. I had a chance to speak with Marlee who made the quilt. She had a number of quilts in the show and said she hand quilted most of her quilts because she found it relaxing. She also told me they were all quilted with Coats & Clark Hand Quilting thread – it is her favorite! (I promise I didn’t prompt her to say that!)  This quilt is incredible and took her 1 1/2 years to finish.


There were fun quilts there too- including a T-shirt quilt made from  shirts from different years of the festival.

I felt inspired when I left the show- by the quilts and by the stories behind them. If you would like to see more of the quilts, here is a link.

Pew Quilt Show.

21 thoughts on “The Pew Quilt Show

    • lynnbrowne Post authorReply

      This was organized by the church it was held in. There is a link to the church’s facebook page at the end of the post.

  1. Nancy Oliver Reply

    I was excited to see this link about our church quilt pew show. It was breathtaking to walk into the sanctuary & see all the quilts!!

  2. Ann Wade Reply

    Oh my how fantastic! What a show. When will it be in 2019? I would love to see it in person.

  3. Kris Chapman Reply

    What a wonderful display. Simply amazing and beautiful! Sure made my day.

  4. Zelda Bunner Reply

    This is beautiful and such a wonderful idea to be put on the pews. Oh how I wish I could have seen this. My mother made a catheredal window quilt all by hand. Many blessings to all.
    Zelda Brunner
    Greeley, CO

  5. Doree Coy Reply

    Our Guild, Southford Falls Quilters from Seymour, CT recently had a similar show at a local Methodist Church. Our venue was a little to small to accommodate all the submitted quilts. This led to having to fold some of the larger ones. White glove ladies willingly opened up those quilts so guests could see the whole thing. We are looking for a larger church for our next show. We are a non-profit and some of the proceeds will be distributed to local food banks. Yours certainly looked like a wonderful. Personally I love antique quilts.

  6. Ronda Reply

    I can’t even imagine being able to see these in person. They are all incredible. Than you so much for sharing. God Bless

  7. Nan Jeffries Reply

    They are all so lovely, and to hear they have family stories behind them is delightful. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Mae Kunkle Reply

    If able I would love to come to your next quilt show. Is it possible that you could email me the date?

    Thank you, Mae

    These are beautiful and a blessing to those who receive the gifts. God Bless all who participate!

  9. Helen Sadler Reply

    Love the quilts. Awesome job each and every one of you that made them. Also, a lot of great ideas for all that view this. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Gil Rowe Reply

    This is nothing more than fabulous. As a beginning quilter, it is wonderful to look back on history and see that different patterns and how hey were all put together! I am going to send his on to some of my quilt guild friends, and it might inspire them to do this. Thank you

  11. Carol Cruz Reply

    I would love to do a quilt show like this in my church. Does anyone have any idea how it could be organized?

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