The students in Darlene Still's classes have been learning how to quilt - finding patterns, coming up with color schemes and piecing materials together.
Though they have had fun making the small quilts that could be used for pillows or wall hangings using the sewing machines, the students had a much larger challenge. The had the opportunity to construct two 8'x8' wooden quilts for Bob and Helen Holmes. The colorful creations will be placed on a 100-year-old barn located on M36.
"The kids did a terrific job," said Helen.
The couple approached Still about giving her students the chance to make the quilts and she jumped on the idea, who has made yard quilts (2' x 2', 3' x3') herself and has always had the desire to make a barn quilt. "this project worked in with our quilting units," she said, laughing about the Family Consumer Science - geometry skills the students were able to use.
The Holmes' selected the pattern Star of Bethlehem pattern in pink, green and yellow and Snow Crystal in red, white and blue. they provided the materials including the wood and the paint. The students enlarged the pattern several times and painted it during class time.
The Holmes' will have the electric company place the quilts on their barn; they are very excited to add the colors for all who pass by to enjoy.
The couple praised Still and the students.
"She (Mrs. Still) was so enthusiastic," said Bob. "This was such a practical project, something the kids can't learn from a book."
The Holmes' are members of the newly formed Buena Vista Barn Quilts organization. They hope that more people will join their group and that more and more quilts go up on the barns. "We want to beautify Buena Vista County and the state," said Helen. "We're tired of hearing people say that Iowa stinks."
For more information on joining the nonprofit group or finding someone to make your barn quilt, contact Paula Balder of Albert City.