Pat Davis and Kebra Wolfe hold up one of the Quilts of Valor.

It doesn’t matter how high the temperature goes this weekend, it is time to wrap yourself in quilts.

The 37th annual Quilt Show hosted by the Smoky Mountain Quilters of Tennessee will fill the Knoxville Expo Center with masterpieces from quilters all across the nation. The show is open for browsing and shopping handmade quilts and wares from vendors from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 16-17.

Betty Sparks, chair of the upcoming show hosted by the Smoky Mountain Quilters of Tennessee, is joined by Judee Shuler and Merikay Waldvogel, 2009 Quilters Hall of Fame inductee, in showcasing one of the small quilts that will be for sale at the show.

In all, close to 200 quilts will be on display, ranging from modern to traditional, from classic to whimsical and from king-size to lap-size. Some are being sold to raise money for the SMQ charities, which include Ronald McDonald House, and some are being sold by the quilters.

“Quilts are art,” says SMQ member Judee Shuler. “They are very visual, tactile, and they appeal to everyone. We all remember sleeping under a quilt and are all touched by quilts at some point in our lives. This show brings that all back.”

Kebra Wolfe, president of SMQ, says the club is filled with people who love to quilt and enjoy sharing their creations with others. “We have all levels, from beginners to experts. We have families who quilt together, men, women, young people. The appeal is universal.”

Merikay Waldvogel, 2009 Quilters Hall of Fame inductee, will present an antique “bed turning” from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, June 16. During a bed turning, several quilts are layered on top of each other and each one is discussed, giving the history of the quilt and any information about the making of the quilt.

Rick Finchum created this quilt that he calls Yellow Sneakers.

By Peggy Garwood of Fairfield Glade

Smokey quilt by Lynn Sykes

Demonstrations and presentations of quilting techniques are scheduled for both days.  Throughout the show, attendees may shop the more than 30 vendors, a small quilt sale benefiting the SMQ’s charitable work and the SMQ Boutique, which offers a unique selection of handcrafted items. Admission is $5, two days for $8, and the Expo Center has free parking. Info:


Written by Sherri Gardner Howell