Middlebury Historical Museum opens quilt exhibit
The Middlebury Community Historical Museum reopened after installing a new exhibit focused on local quilts that have been owned or made by area residents.
In all, 17 quilts are on display, all handmade and dating from the 1930s and 1940s. “About a year ago, we started talking about exhibits and we came up with the idea for a quilt display,” Marcia Cook said. She worked with a pair of area quilters over the course of three months to bring the exhibit together.
“The fabrics used are interesting, like old feed sacks, for example. They found ways to use old fabrics that they had on hand,” Cook added.
“There are some distinctive patterns,” noted Richard Smith, who manages the museum. “There is also one color called cheddar. That was a favorite of that time.” Ones made during WWII were often patriotic, with bright reds, whites, and blues, Smith continued. “You see the bright colors during wartime and more muted in peacetime.”
Looking at the collection at the museum, “you get a real appreciation of the past,” Cook stated. One of the quilts had even been featured on the cover of a magazine.
“I’ve been surprised by the overall quality of quilts that age,” Smith said. “You get the feeling it’s an art form. It’s folk art that is used and is useful. It was part of life, but very creative at the same time.”
“They are labors of love,” Cook said. “You think of the lighting they worked with and the old hands, and how they did that stitching is beyond me.”
“People will be pleasantly surprised by the quality we have here,” Cook noted.
Based on the response to the exhibit, the quilts are expected to be on display through November.
The museum, is located at 301 W. Bristol Ave. in Middlebury and is open from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
Stevens art exhibit
The Middlebury Community Historical Museum is featuring several pieces of art done by Margi Stevens, a local artist who passed away in 1981.
The museum recently received some new art by Margi, including one piece found in a closet at a local office.
The exhibit will be up through June.