CAMP VERDE - It is estimated that the first quilted garment was made in about 3400 B.C., as the handmade item was attached to a statue depicting the pharaoh of the Egyptian First Dynasty.
Since that time, the most common purpose of quilting has been to create blankets to keep people warm.
Nowadays, not all quilting is used to cover a bed. By hand or by machine, people make quilts to wear, to adorn their homes, for utilitarian function, even as pieces of art to be given away or sold as with any other form of art.
In 2012, a group of ladies sometimes known as the Camp Verde Quilters assumed the task of running the Fort Verde Days Quilt Show. Every even-numbered year, the annual Fort Verde Days event sponsors the quilt show - and Fabric Craft Boutique - in the Town of Camp Verde's Community Center gymnasium.
"We celebrate the joy of quilting in all its forms," said Karen Morris, a member of the Fort Verde Days Quilt Show Committee. "That's the purpose of the shows."
From 9:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8 and from 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 9, more than 70 quilted items will be on display in the center of the gym, such as blankets, vests, purses, place mats, table runners, wall hangings, jackets, "everything in fabric art," said Sue Chester of the Fort Verde Days Quilt Show Committee.
The gym's interior walls will be lined with tables filled with fabric crafts for sale by the Verde Valley's craftiest people.
And the winners are ...
The beauty of the Fort Verde Days Quilt Show, said Sue Chester, is that "it's open to everybody."
"Juried shows only accept quilts from members," Chester said. "This is an opportunity for everybody to show a quilt."
Because quilts are not evaluated by judges, the awards are actually people's choice.
Votes will be tallied, with first place, second place and third place given out based on number of overall votes.
"We'll take pretty much any quilt to display," said committee member Karen Morris. "If you like to quilt and you want to show, then we'll take you."
Quilts have been entered this year not only from Camp Verde, but also from Clarkdale, Cottonwood, Payson, Pine and Sedona.
Of course members have also entered several quilts. As with most clubs, groups and organizations, there's always room for more people.
"It's a lot of work, but it's fun. And people are so appreciative of it," Morris said. "But we need more members."
Come to the country store
New to this year's Fort Verde Days Quilt Show is the Country Store, with used quilts and other functional and decorative things for sale. The Fort Verde Days Quilt Show Committee will donate all proceeds from the Country Store to non-profits Friends of the Camp Verde Community Library, Camp Verde Historical Society Museum, Camp Verde Senior Center, Abide Maternity Home and Bread of Life Mission to help with their programs.
"What started as a little project happened to become a big project, which is great," said committee member Peg Miller.
According to Karen Morris, anyone who makes a donation "can designate where the money goes."
Anyone who attends the Fort Verde Quilt Show can participate in a raffle to win a quilt - or to win one of the many items donated by the show's crafty vendors. Raffle tickets are $1 each - or six tickets for $5.
Anyone interested in volunteering with the Fort Verde Days Quilt Show should contact Peg Miller at 928-567-5322 or Jackie Holmstrom at 602-206-4954.