The last in line for a show-and-tell, Cindy Bryan waited at a quilters meeting this month to show off six quilts handmade for a special purpose: They will be given to Rainbow House, an emergency shelter for children in Columbia.
Bryan is service project coordinator for the Booneslick Trail Quilters’ Guild, which has made quilts for Rainbow House for six years. The guild’s Starlight and Daylight chapters donate more than 40 quilts a year to the shelter, Bryan said.
“Every boy or girl that leaves the Rainbow House has one quilt that is theirs and theirs alone,” said Suzanne Henage, president of the Starlight chapter. “I would love to be a fly on the wall when these little girls and boys pick out their quilt.”
In September, after Rainbow House has settled into its new building, the not-for-profit guild will hand over more than 20 quilts.
Barbara Kingsley, a full-time house parent at Rainbow House for four years, said the quilts are given to the children in a to-go bag, and every child receives one.
“The children hardly have anything that is their own,” she said. “It’s really wonderful that it’s given especially to them.”
Kingsley usually doesn’t see the reaction of a child receiving a quilt, but she once caught a glimpse when a couple of children accidentally received their to-go bags early. “They were just thrilled,” she said. “They just wrapped themselves up in them every time they sat down.”
The quilts are made from material donations made by Columbia shops: Satin Stitches, Appletree Quilting (formerly Silks and More), Miss Millie’s Quilt Shop and, in Rocheport, Micki’s Fabric. Then the supplies are dispersed among the guild’s more than 240 members.
Lucille White, who works at Satin Stitches, sees the quilting project as a way to give to the community.
“We give customers the squares of fabric to embroider, then they return them,” White said. “Afterwards, we give them to the quilt guild.” Anyone who comes in and wants to share embroidery skills can take one home, she said.
Satin Stitches gives more than 350 9-inch– by– 9-inch squares a year. It takes between nine and 12 squares to make the child-sized quilts.
Bryan said making a quilt often takes many hands.
“One lady will do the top, one lady will do the quilting and one lady will just do the binding,” she said. “Sometimes, some ladies will do the quilting from start to finish.”