Shaft Mines: Pantone Quilt Challenge 2023

Shaft Mines

49” x 37”

United States

The 2023 Pantone Color of the Year is Viva Magenta. Elizabeth Ray and Sarah Ruiz are hosting this year’s Quilt Challenge. I knew I had a box of scraps in this color and similarly-colored scraps. I wanted it to feel moody like the artwork from Pantone. Half way through the process it began to look like a geological dig. I started calling it Shaft Mines.

I grew up in the mountains of Southwest Virginia. My father and brother are coal miners. They haven’t worked in shaft mines, but drift mines. In a shaft mines, there is a vertical entry from the surface into the coal seam— think elevator. In a drift mines, you enter the mountain at an incline— think tunnel or mouth. This quilt feels like both.

Because I was using black, I worried it wasn’t magenta enough. I worried it was too chaotic. I worried my worries would prevent me from finishing it. I tinkered until I gave up. The quilting in straight lines rescued it for me. I love how the dark pink stitches give order to the chaos. I used 8 weight thread in part of it. My machine didn’t like it so I switched to 50 weight in different pinks.

I’m linking this post to the challenge link up page. Go here for the other entries


Three Years Later

It has been a long three years.

None of my close family or friends died from Covid-19, but I know people who have. At this point, because I’m vaccinated and boosted, I will probably survive any infection. Nonetheless I have spent most of those three years inside my home. I visited my daughter in 2021 after my first vaccination. I was so hopeful then.

Then Delta and Omicron. Cases are down now, and we’ve learned so much about covid and how to treat symptoms.

I’ve started going out to eat and it feels weird. This invisible monster is in the room and I know it has killed millions of people, and I should leave immediately. All of us want to forget. We experienced trauma together and now we want to gather and laugh and eat. I get it, but it’s hard for me.

So here I sit on my couch, hoping for better days.

Sightseeing, 2021


Member Spotlight: Wanda Ann Dotson | Central Virginia Modern Quilt Guild

Name: Wanda Ann Dotson Member of CVAMQG since: 2015 How long have you been quilting? Twenty-nine years What is your favorite quilting tool? ?  I love hand quilting, and I couldn’t quilt without my metal thimble. What are your favorite fabric lines and substrates? Do you prefer prints or solids? I love solids, and I have recently…
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