The committee is delighted to announce that from Monday 27th May, you will officially be able to join the Greater Western Sydney Modern Quilt Guild, Inc!

I’ll start with answering some questions that you might have!

What will be the benefits of joining the GWSMQG?

  • You will be able to be a part of this inspiring, friendly and creative group of people!
  • You will be eligible to attend any meeting of the GWSMQG
  • You will be eligible for member discounts for Guild events
  • You will eligible to participate in Guild challenges and group projects
  • You will become (as soon as it is possible – hopefully July 2013) a member of the global MQG and entitled to benefits as follows:
    • Access to the new (coming later this year!) MQG website.
      • This is going to include a social media hub which can be used at an individual, national and international level
      • You will able to easily communicate with other guilds and their members
      • You will be able to share photos, ask for advice from other members and find information about MQG challenges
    • Opportunities to participate in inter-guild member swaps and challenges
    • Discounted entry fees for MQG quilt shows
    • Priority and early bird registration, and discounted rates on conferences and events (if you are lucky enough to be able to travel to the US!)
    • Discounts and special offers with MQG sponsors
    • Membership cards
    • Official member blog button
    • Membership pin
    • 10% discount on online MQG merchandise purchases
    • {I take no responsibility for the MQG list of benefits – this is information provided by the MQG and may be subject to change}

Can I come to meetings if I am not a member?

  • We love meeting new people and welcome anybody interested in modern quilting to come and try out our meetings and see if you’d like to become a member.
  • For all new visitors in the Greater Sydney Metropolitan Area (including the Blue Mountains, full details in the Guild’s constitution), your first visit is free.
  • After that, you may attend 2 more meetings upon payment of the Visitor’s Fee (see below).
  • After those 3 meetings, you must join if you wish to attend any further meetings.
  • We also love meeting other quilters from outside Sydney and interstate! If you are visiting from outside of the Sydney area (licence to be provided as proof of address), you may attend any meeting, without being a member, upon payment of the Visitor’s Fee.

What do I receive when I join?

  • Upon payment of the joining fee and the annual membership fee, you will receive the following:
    • a magnetic name badge
    • a fabric pack to make your membership quilt block
    • a GWSMQG membership card
    • a copy of the GWSMQG constitution

Do I have to pay for anything else after I have paid my joining fee and membership fee?

  • Yes. The Sunday Sewalongs cannot be fully subsidised by the Guild, due to the high cost of hiring premises in Sydney. Also, not everybody can attend the Sunday Sewalongs, so in the interests of being equitable, it is necessary for those who do attend to wear the cost. The committee resolved, at our last committee meeting, to increase the charge for the Sunday Sewalong to $15 per person. The Guild will cover any shortfall between those attendance fees and the room hire charge.
  • For $15, you get 6 hours of sewing in a fully air-conditioned, private room, in a centrally located, licensed club. There is a bistro on the premises, and the staff are awesome – they will bring your coffee & cake and your lunch to your table whilst you sew (food and drink at your own cost). You are also able to bring your own lunch if you would prefer. The toilets are clean, there is plenty of parking and we think $15 is pretty good value for our Sunday Sewalong!

How do I join?

  • We don’t have a Guild bank account (yet), so all fees will be collected in person, in cash.
  • Please come along, in person, to one of our upcoming meetings, request a membership form, hand over your fees, and you’re in! We should have enough fabric packs to give you one instantly, and I will arrange for your name badge and membership card to be printed ASAP.
  • (The membership cards will be a little basic to start with, but may become a bit fancier once we have an idea of how many members we have).

What if I have already been coming to meetings and am not ‘new’? How does that work?

  • We want all of you who have been coming along to our meetings to join. We have enjoyed your company and look forward to seeing your modern quilting!
  • We would request that you please attend at least one meeting before the end of July and officially join the Guild by July 31.

Okay, how much is this going to cost?

  • The committee has set the 2013/14 annual Membership Fee at $50.00
  • All memberships accepted from Monday will last until 30 June 2014.
  • The committee has set the 2013/14 Joining Fee at $15.00
  • The committee has set the 2013/14 Visitor’s Fee at $10.00

If you have any questions, please ask! You can leave a comment below, email us at or come along to a meeting and have a chat with us.

We think that you get a lot of benefits from joining. The MQG is going ahead in leaps and bounds and it will be thrilling to be a part of that global group as well as our small, local group. We are really excited that our Guild is making this next step. Please join in and be a part of it too!

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It’s Official!

I am delighted to announce today that the Greater Western Sydney Modern Quilt Guild has been granted registration as an Incorporated Association under the Associations Incorporation Act 2009. Which is a fancy way of saying that we are now an official entity, with a constitution and rules and brand new office-bearers, elected by those present at the Monday Meetup on 22 April, 2013.

The inaugural office-bearers of the Greater Western Sydney Modern Quilt Guild, Inc. are as follows:

President – Sheridan Powell
Vice-President – Lorena Uriarte
Secretary – Jenna Appleton
Treasurer – Sheridan Powell

We will be ready to start accepting membership fees at the very next meeting, on Monday 27 May, and that will be the basis for a separate post.

Once the founding members of the GWSMQG Inc. have joined and we have official membership underway, we will be seeking nominations for two more ordinary (ie non-office-bearing) members to join the committee. Caroline Gunn has kindly agreed to be nominated as our Challenge Officer, so that’s one nomination taken care of. Please come and see us at a meeting if you would like to be nominated as the other ordinary committee member. We welcome lots of involvement from all members and hope that everyone will step up in due course and take a role in leading the Guild.

If you aren’t already aware, we are hoping to be one of the first guilds to sign up to be an official member guild of the global Modern Quilt Guild from the 1st of July, and we are on track to achieve that.

Behind the scenes, my next job is to apply to the Australian Tax Office for not-for-profit status.  I have updated the ‘Upcoming Meetings’ on the side tab, and you might see Lorena and Jenna in here too from time to time. I apologise for not keeping this as up to date as I should have, but it’s never too late to start afresh.

Thank you to everyone who played a role in applying for registration as an Incorporated Association. It was a big job and your help was much appreciated!


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GWSMQG Membership Quilt

What would a group of quilters be without a quilt?

As we talk about modern quilting; we talk about the nuances of color, the subtly of shapes and the voice we find in pieced works. As we started this group, I thought it important that we use that voice in our collective projects.  We talked with others about what it meant to be in a quilt guild and what they hoped to get out of GWSMQG. Inspiration, ideas and community were the prevalent notions.

As we explored our guild logo and chose colours, the idea of a membership quilt naturally evolved.  By creating a membership quilt; we hope to make  a growing, visual representation of the community within our guild.

How it will work…

Members have the opportunity to contribute a block that represents modern quilting to them.   The blocks will be pieced together to create a patchwork quilt top. Over time the membership quilt will grow as new members join and make their contribution.

This is not a challenge about who can make the best block or the most detailed block. This is simply a chance for members put their mark on a project which we hope represents our guild in the years to come. The membership quilt is about coming together as a community and being a part of something more.

At this stage, we don’t an envision an end moment as to when it will be quilted. It might keep growing, or as a group we might have a collective feeling that the time is right. For now, it will be a growing historical representation of wonderful people who have come together to share their passion for quilting.

The membership quilt and corresponding signature quilt (described below) will both be brought to meetings and photographed periodically to show others how our guild is growing.

On fabrics…

In order to bring continuity to the project, we ask that you work from a Kona color pack which will be available for purchase at guild meetings. These packs include a fat eighth of each color in our logo, along with some snow. For many, these solids will be all you need to make a modern block.

Others may want to add a small piece of another fabric to personalize their contribution. That’s certainly welcome, but  not a requirement.

You may use all of the colors provided in the color pack or you might chose to work with just one or two of them. You decide! Remember that this quilt is not about standing out or making the best block, it’s about being part of the community.

On block type…

You can select any block style that signifies modern quilting to you.  We’ve avoiding giving you specific examples, so you can use this project as a time to explore and learn more about modern quilting. For inspiration, feel free to visit The Modern Quilt Guild blog. There will be plenty of patchwork books at Sunday Sewalongs to flip through as well!

On piecing…

Your block can be handpieced, machine pieced or appliqued; as you prefer.  As the quilt top will be brought out to display at each meeting, please make sure your seams will hold up to a bit of handling. If you’ve got quite a few seams that are likely to thread, then it wouldn’t hurt to spritz a bit of fray check or similar to the back.

Your block should be 8″ finished.  That means the block you turn in will be 8 1/2″ unfinished including  a 1/4″ seam allowance all around. If you are uncomfortable trimming the block to the right size, we can trim it for you when we are ready to add it in. 8″ finished is a bit small, but that makes it a manageable size as our group grows.

On embellishment…

Each block style chosen will be different. Often the piecing speaks for itself, but a few will shine with the addition of handstitching. You are welcome to add this type of embellishment, of course.  As we do not yet know how and when it will be quilted, we suggest avoiding the addition of bulky items.

On signatures…

As a general rule of thumb, signatures directly on blocks would detract from their modern composition. Yet, we find it important to keep a record of each member’s contribution. Instead of signing our blocks, we have decided to create a smaller signature quilt. The layout of the names in the signature quilt will mirror the larger membership quilt. As each contributor returns their block, they will be asked to sign a signature blocks which will in turn be joined onto the signature quilt. The signature quilt will have a simple layout which doesn’t require too much additional time or work to maintain. Our first idea for this is sketched below. If you have a modern suggestions that works with time restraints,  feel free to jump in with a suggestion as I’ve never made a signature quilt before.

I’m currently picturing the names against Kona snow with the coloured portions coming out of our scrap baskets. If you have any scraps that would work, feel free to bring them to the next meeting.  My ears are open here, as many of you are far more experienced with signature quilts than I am.

For those who aren’t familiar, signature quilts have traditional roots and have been used as a way to document membership and attendance for centuries.  To see a wide variety of them, you can visit The Quilt Index galleries.

Who is looking after the project…

At the moment, Amy is looking after collecting and assembling the quilt blocks.  Help would certainly be welcomed. You can pick up a pack of fabrics from Sheridan at the next meeting.  They are currently $7 which worked out to the be local costing for Kona fabrics. If you have any questions about the project, don’t hesitate to ask.  Feel free to leave your questions below as comments in case others have the same questions!

It was wonderful to see the enthusiasm for this idea from those at our first Monday meeting.  We can’t wait to see this project come to life.

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Welcome to the Greater Western Sydney Modern Quilt Guild!

Sydney is a big city! Don’t we all know that!

Did you know that the Sydney urban area actually covers almost 1800 square kilometres? And the population is about 4.5 million people? With that in mind, and with the existing Sydney Modern Quilt Guild concentrating their efforts in the north of the city, Amy and I have been working behind the scenes to set up another Modern Quilt Guild in Sydney.

We present to you the Greater Western Sydney Modern Quilt Guild!

We’re hoping to attract modern quilters from the western, south-western and north-western suburbs of Sydney, but anyone interested in modern quilting is very welcome to attend!

You might have some questions about what is modern quilting? I cannot answer it any better than the Modern Quilt Guild has already done here! Please go and have a read if you have any queries.  We’ve got some fantastic ideas about how to make the GWS Modern Quilt Guild a really fun organisation, and I hope you’d like to be a part of it.

Our plan is to have two regular meetings a month:

– Regular monthly meetings on a Monday evening, approximately 2 hours long. We will discuss the ‘business’ side of the guild, and much more interestingly, ‘Show and Tell’ your quilting efforts. This is your chance to come and chat about all things Modern Quilting. To spice up the conversation, we’ll have monthly themes and encourage you to bring along items that fit the theme. For example, “Show us your favourite craft book” or “Show us a handy craft tool”.

– Regular monthly meetings on a Sunday where we just sew, sew, sew. Bring along your machine, your hand stitching or your quilting and enjoy some dedicated sewing time amongst like minded quilters.

Where are we going to meet? It’s a good question. Sydney is big. We have concentrated our efforts around the geographical heart of Sydney, in an area that provides reasonably easy access from all the western suburbs.

I am still trying to secure a suitable venue for the Sunday Sewalong, but whilst I do that, we will start our Monday Meetups shortly!

Leave us a comment if you have any questions, and we’ll reply in the comments, so make sure you come back and check!

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