This year’s Featured Quilter for the SMQA quilt show is Colette Wear. Quilt show attendees are in for a big treat as Colette is a masterful quilter, applique expert, and genuine artist.
Colette has resided in Mariposa with her husband George for 27 years. Colette and George have four adult children, two boys and two girls. Formerly residents of San Jose, California, they both worked for IBM. They moved to Mariposa after falling in love with the area after visiting a friend’s ranch. As a Mariposa resident, Colette is very active in sewing and quilting activities in her home town as well as the Sierra Mountain Quilters Association.
She belongs to the Mariposa Piece Makers, a very active quilting club that meets once a
month in Mariposa on the second Saturday of each month. She also belongs to the Sierra
Sewing group that meets in Mariposa at the Senior Center. She participates in many
community-benefiting projects such as sewing quilts for CASA kids, patriotic quilts for Rotary, and quilts for the Children’s Hospital. This is along with all the community-benefiting
projects she participates in with SMQA! A lifelong artist and seamstress, Colette decided to try making her first quilt for her fourteen year old daughter. It sounded like a fun project
as it was called, “Quilt in a Day.” Before rotary cutters, it involved ripping the fabric into strips
and sewing them into log cabin squares. As Colette had been sewing since she was nine
years old, making a quilt came easy. In fact, she became very interested in sewing as a child
when her mother was sewing clothing for a life-sized doll. Colette was fascinated. When her
mother took a break to make lunch, she decided that she could do some sewing herself. In the unsupervised process, she sewed through her finger. Her mother had to carefully remove the needle with pliers! Yikes! But that didn’t deter her. Her mother immediately decided to show her how to safely sew and she has been sewing ever since. Several years passed between Colette’s first quilt and her return to quilting. Following her retirement to Mariposa, she visited Bear Paw Quilt Shop in Oakhurst, where she saw a Chicken Quilt. She says that it was Donna Hennings’ encouragement and mentoring, that inspired her to quilt again. Donna is one of her quilting “heroes.” Colette has had many quilting experiences and
adventures. She didn’t know much about applique but decided to take an applique trip with friends. Unknowingly, she selected a very complicated pattern. It involved needle-turning
applique, which proved to be one of her most challenging projects in quilting. Following that
experience, she decided to learn other methods and has become masterful with the starch and reversed applique methods. Another quilting adventure of Colette’s was her quilting cruise to Hawaii with Pearl Pereira, an applique expert. Four days at sea, coming and going to Hawaii, allowed lots of time for learning reverse quilting on Hawaiian quilt blocks. Some
folks got a bit seasick, but not Colette! She met many new friends and learned from one of her favorite and most inspiring quilt instructors. Since then, she often uses Pearl Pereira’s
beautiful, artistic patterns. At the SMQA quilt show on May 18th and 19th, Colette will display
some of her latest projects including her biggest challenge: an applique flower quilt designed by Pereira. The quilt involves intricate applique, advanced embroidery techniques, and machine quilting. The SMQA Quilt Show is May 18-19 at the Oakhurst Community Center. Colette will be there to display her amazing quilts, many of which are award winners.
Submitted by Diane Martin