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Local quilter recognized with national award

Marshalltown woman loves her hobby

October 10, 2012
By ANDREW POTTER - Staff Writer ( , Times-Republican

For Shirley Wyngarden, quilting is a hobby that consumes four hours a day.

It may seem like work - she calls her quilting room her office - but the retired Marshalltown woman enjoys the time she spends on her projects.

"I just like everything about it," Wyngarden said.

Article Photos

Shirley Wyngarden, of Marshalltown, holds her quilt which was featured as a
semifinalist in the recent American Quilter’s Society show in Des Moines. She is also sitting on other quilts she has made in the past.

She has been quilting for 20 years and recently has been entering her work into contests. One of her quilts was honored as a national semifinalist for the American Quilter's Society show in Des Moines last weekend.

The 121-block quilt is titled "And Always, Affectionately Yours." Wyngarden sent in pictures of the quilt to the AQS, which led to her semifinalist honor and entry into the juried show.

"It's nice to get the recognition," Wyngarden said of finding out her work was selected for the show. "I just sat down and thought about it, then I started calling people."

The piece was one of 185 semifinalists in the running for more than $44,000 in prize money. There were quilts from people from 40 states and six other countries at the show. Though she didn't win any money, the experience was enjoyable for Wyngarden as thousands of people viewed her work.

"It's a real rush," the Kansas native said. "It's kind of like a runner's high walking around with your contestant ribbon."

Her family are often the recipients of her quilting work and so is Iowa River Hospice, which uses her quilts for the families they serve as well as for raffles to raise money.

"I think hospice is doing phenomenal work and they provide such a comfort to people, and that's what quilts are all about," Wyngarden said.

She gets a lot of her ideas from quilting books and magazines, as well as from her friends who quilt. With her recent show success under her belt, she has plans to enter more contests in the future.

"I'd like to make one and get in another show," she said. "You start to think about what you can make next."



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