The Quilter Next Door - Fran Elnicky
I started a series about people who quilt - maybe not famous - with or without a blog - doesn't matter.
This section of my blog is to share with you the stories of normal people who like to quilt.
Today's feature is my friend who makes so many tops for me for charity. I got to spend a couple of hours with her back in September - when we were in Arizona for the conference.
She doesn't hang around the internet much so I'm not sure she'll ever see this.
Her name is Fran Elnicky and she has been quilting for many years. Until a couple of years ago, she and her mom made charity quilts for me. Her mom passed away. After that, I asked if she would be willing to just make tops for me and I'd finish them here in Poland.
Let me share with you the pictures and things I asked her.
Becky - Fran, where is your husband's family from - with a name like "Elnicky"?
Fran - "We're not sure - but we think somewhere in central Europe - possibly the former Yugoslavia/Balkan States."
Becky - "Tell me about how you make these quilt tops for Poland."
Fran - "I make the Around the World design, as you can see. When I get fabric in, either donated or things I buy, I cut them into 4.5" squares and put them in these drawers by color/design. Then I lay out the design, and place the squares next to the machine I have and just sew them together."
"I have been known to get children involved in helping me lay out the squares."
"My mom and I always used to tie our quilts - that was her job up until shortly before she passed away. She would also do the binding on the baby size we sent you."
"I have drawers and drawers and drawers of squares," Fran told me as she pulled them open and we examined them. "I'm so glad you can use these simple Around the World designs. I enjoy making them and I can use almost any number of squares I have with it."
When she gets fabric in, she cuts it into 4.5" squares and then sorts it by color. This way she doesn't have a lot of misc. fabric sitting around (at least not that I saw).
One thing Fran does is document her work. She keeps photo albums of all her donated quilts - and has kept them from day one.
Fran has been a blessing to literally hundreds of people that she's never met!
Thank you, Fran, for your generosity, both in your time, your talents, but of your money! It costs a lot to buy the materials and send those boxes to Poland! But you've brought cheer to so many here in our small area of Poland. I grin whenever I see one of your quilts in a baby stroller here in Poland. They are so distinctive, that, yes, I do recognize them!
And that's it for my next installation of the quilter next door.
And now...if you need something to finish up your projects - be sure to check out what my sis has for you over in the shop area!