Friday, November 20, 2015


I am excited & ready to shout it off the rooftops.
After way too many hours, debates, struggles, & frustration...
And after focus, determination, perseverance, and belief we could succeed...

A town of talented- but quite traditional quilters now has a MODERN QUILT GUILD!

My friend Tricia Harvey got the ball rolling a year ago at a A Nimble Thimble, a local quilt shop in Tyler, Texas.

As a modern group- we were a small gathering of nontraditional quilters with ideas and eagerness to help support each other in creative goals.

And then--- we weren't. 

Now, I honestly can't pick a moment it happened... or a who changed things... or specifically a how.

Perhaps each of us found someone else to invite... and then they invited someone else?
But before we new it, we had over 40 people signed up on our mailing list, following our fb page, and showing up at meetings & sew days!!!

We were having growing pains... and it was time to take the leap forward. 

It takes a lot of work to start a new chapter of The Modern Quilt Guild!

After the initial contacts & meetings... you move forward in the planning stages and commit officers.

Next it's the official stuff
Determining the guilds goals & mission... 
Meeting frequency, location, planning events and such.

Dues had to be agreed upon & a bank account set up. You need this to apply for the 501(c)3 group exemption in taxes.

And lastly (And how I spent a better part of my week)... the bylaws.

The Modern Quilt Guild has a great example on their website as a sample... but we needed our own since we are a small starter chapter in a much smaller region than Austin.

The hours went by over coffee and sweets on Sunday...
Each of us had printed out other guild bylaws that were our "favorites" for ideas.
Alas... it seemed every bit of them was open to discussion, interpretation and reinterpretation until we made it ours.

Our wizard then assembled all the bits from the bylaws collected from "those other" guilds and then the things we created independently for ours.

And then I proofed-
and edited...

And proofed-
and edited...

And proofed-
and edited

And proofed
And---- And---- And--- Could it be?
I found no more spelling, grammar, fact, wordiness, or edits.
That was it--- we had BYLAWS!!!

Our wizard printed them out- and they were ready for distribution at our meeting last night.

Our officers were present and ready to serve! 
Tricia called the meeting to order after 90 minutes of socializing, sewing, shopping and quilters slowly meandering in. 
(I ended up taking the minutes because our secretary was running late- I hope I can read my own penmanship!)

Welcomes & announcements were made, soap to clearly layout our new agendas format. Next we moved on to a discussion of the progress we have made towards our goal of becoming a chapter of the Modern Quilt Guild.

Organization plans & bylaws were presented... and accepted.

We reviewed entries from our "logo challenge". Each sketch numbered to allow a private vote, our logos were placed out on a table for consideration. 
My design was actually chosen... but the colors are awful since I used what I had available. A computer artist in the group plans to scan it in and completely update and redesign it. She will bring back variations and we will make a final logo decision next meeting.

All that remained was membership.

As a startup guild, many of us are already individual members of national. It complicates things some & dues will have to be prorated in some way.
Our treasurer collected dues and we hoped to hit our ten new national member goal.

As of last night, we have 23 members of The Tyler Modern Quilt Guild... 
(Not too shabby for a small start up in a traditional town)

And surprisingly, when I stopped taking notes and looked at the faces of our founding members... I found a lot I knew from The Quilt Guild of East Texas... (what I call our traditional guild).
But many I did not know & look forward to getting to know them.

An hour later, show & tell began. 

I was glad I had not brought anything this month... there is so much talent in this group! It can be a bit intimidating at times... but mostly,
I am inspired by them.
I look forward to forming new friendships & strengthening some older ones.

As a Vice President
I plan to proudly encourage participation in the way we learn from each other.
Inspire one another 
& learn from one other.
And most of all...
We are going to have a kick-ass time!

Because... shout it from the rooftop...

Some founding members of The Tyler Modern Quilt Guild

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