Making a fine quilt involves many hours and a lot of work, and as soon as a quilter finishes one project there’s another one ready to start. It’s like an addiction.

Maybe a magnificent obsession would be a better description.

There are two quilting clubs in St. Paul whose members work nonstop to provide quilts to people who can use some handmade comfort: the Sunshine Quilt Club, and the Quilting Bees Guild.

According to president Carol Zarowny, the Sunshine club has been going for more than 20 years. “It started out with people sewing in their homes,” she said. Now they gather at the Lions Club hall in town.

“We sew for the dialysis unit at the hospital, Second Chance Trail Rides, and wherever somebody is in need of a quilt we try to have one ready for them,” Zarowny said. “We give bags out to the Capella Centre, along with some shampoo and lotion and other goodies to go with that. We are making walker bags for people at our lodges or the hospital.”

Margaret Hebert is president of the Quilting Bees, who gather twice a week at the St, Paul Senior Citizens Club. She says her group is also kept busy making quilts for people in the community.

“We make quilts for cancer patients. We’ve brought quilts to the Capella Centre and we are now making wheelchair quilts for Extendicare,” she said. 

The output of the two clubs is tremendous. Zarowny says the Sunshine club has donated about 100 quilts to the dialysis unit alone over the past seven years.  She says it’s a social outing and a creative outlet at the same time, and the members are tireless in their service to the community.

Hebert agrees. She says the members love what they do.

“You have to love it,” she said. “But then when you have a purpose like this, it’s even better.” 

The Sunshine Quilt Club (top photo) and the Quilting Bees Guild (second photo) spend many hours providing comfy quilts for the community. Photos by JEFF GAYE