Have you ever wished quilts could talk? What would they tell us?
Quilts are great in and of themselves, but the Quilt Alliance has always been most interested in the people making quilts, and the stories they have to tell. As the host of Running Stitch, A QSOS Podcast I explore those stories, revealing the inner thoughts, feelings, and motivations of contemporary quiltmakers by drawing on Quilters S.O.S. — Save Our Stories, the long running oral history project created by the Quilt Alliance in 1999. Thanks to our new partnership with the Louie B Nunn Center for Oral History at the University of Kentucky Libraries, we are working to digitize this collection, and now that we have digital audio, we are able to bring the stories of quilts and quiltmakers to you through this brand new podcast.
Quilts and quiltmaking serve as a lens to examine some of today’s most pressing issues, including activism, public health, politics, race, and the economy. We’ll dig into the QSOS archive to listen to excerpts from past interviews, and bring back interviewees to ask them about what they are working on and thinking about presently. Season one guests have included Victoria Findlay Wolfe, Carolyn Mazoomli, Thomas Knauer, Melanie Testa, and Jinney Beyer. In season two, Ricky Tims, Merikay Waldvogel, Denyse Schmidt, Joe Cunningham and other quilt industry luminaries joined me to discuss the state of quilts during these strange Covid times, and to look back at quilt history. In season three, we invited “younger” quiltmakers—meaning 40s and under!—to share the ways they have innovated the art form, while we listen back to clips from QSOS interviews in the archive. Don’t miss interviews with Jess Bailey (@publiclibraryquilts), Sara Trail, Eliza Hardy Jones, Zak Foster, and Sara Steiner, the @pandemicquilter.
All QSOS interviews are archived with Quilt Alliance partners, the Library of Congress American Folklife Center and the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History at the University of Kentucky Libraries. Running Stitch is made possible through a generous grant from the Ardis and Robert James Foundation.