Marie White Masterpiece Award winner, Pat Holly, received $7,500 for Turkish Treasures from Sponsor Road to California, Inc.
The Marie White Masterpiece Award is the second highest cash award given out during Road to California’s annual quilt contest. Named for the mother of Road to California founder, Carolyn Reese, Marie White was very active in the quilting and doll making world until she passed away seven years ago, six weeks shy of her 93rd birthday. Marie and Carolyn established The Fabric Patch fabric store in 1981. Their store was featured in the third issue of American Patchwork & Quilting Magazine, naming it one of the top thirty stores in the United States. Marie’s specialty was doll making. She also loved working with ribbon embroidery and crazy quilting.
Pat has been sewing all of her life. Her mother sewed her family’s clothes and the Kenmore sewing machine was always available for Pat to use. Pat began with sewing doll clothes and clothes for herself. When her sister had her first child in 1978, Pat found a Vogue pattern and made a baby quilt for her new niece. Later, in the early 1980’s, her sister took classes at a local quilt shop and she shared with Pat what she had learned. Not long after, Pat found quilt guilds and took lots of workshops from many great teachers.
What inspired Pat’s winning design? In 2012, she went on a wonderful tour of Turkey with the Costume Society of America. They saw so many amazing palaces, mosques, ancient cities and even had a balloon ride in Cappadocia! Pat took many many photographs on that trip and it was from one of those images that she designed Turkish Treasures.
It took Pat two years to complete the quilt. While she was in Turkey, she saw ladies making needle lace called “oya.” Oya is a cross between tatting and macrame, done with just one large eyed tapestry type of sewing needle. Because Pat believes that the edge of a quilt is a great place to do something special, she decided to make the edging for Turkish Treasures using oya needle lace. She found some books that described the technique but it was difficult for Pat to make. She ended up watching YouTube videos in Turkish and was able to learn by watching!
When Pat received the email telling her she had won, she was “absolutely thrilled.” Remarked Pat, “There are so many amazing quilts in competitions now that it is always such an honor to receive an award.”
What is Pat going to do with her prize money? She is leaving soon for a textile tour of India and is confident that she will be able to find a few treasures there to bring home with her!! Wen she returns from her trip, Pat plans on continuing to work on samples for the Holly Girls Quilt Retreat that she, her sister, and Sue Nickels host each year in September. And she added, “I’m always thinking about the next big quilt I want to make!”
Congratulations Pat Holly on winning road 2018’s Marie White Masterpiece Award.