Local artist Paula Rafferty features in European Quilt Association exhibition

Paula Rafferty

Pictured at the Limerick School of Art & Design for the EQA Patchwork and Quilting Exhibition are members of the Mid-West Irish Patchwork Society, Ellen McNamara, Paula Rafferty, International Representative, Kate Hennessy and Les Stanley. Picture: Conor Owens/ilovelimerick.

Local artist Paula Rafferty features in European Quilt Association exhibition

By I Love Limerick correspondent Chloe Reidy

Local artist Paula Rafferty is the International Representative of the Irish Patchwork Society and features in the Irish segment of the EQA exhibition. The Mid-West Branch of the Irish Patchwork Society is proud to present Boundaries, an EQA (European Quilt Association) Patchwork and Quilting exhibition, which takes place in the Cathedral Gallery in Limerick School of Art and Design (LSAD) from Tuesday, July 16 to Friday, July 26. The gallery opens daily from 10 am to 5 pm, and admission is free.

Boundaries is a major international exhibition of Patchwork and textile pieces, that features 8 quilts from 19 different European Quilt Guilds, with a total of 152 quilts on display. These quilts showcase a wide variety of techniques and styles and are designed and made by quilters of all levels from beginner to professional.

Paula Rafferty is originally from Dundalk, Louth, and moved to Limerick in 1987 to study Fashion in Limerick School of Art and Design. Paula ran her own business for a few years and then returned to LSAD to study teaching. She has worked in Limerick Prison for the last twenty-two years, teaching classes in quilting to the inmates.

Paula said, “Fabric is my first love, I love working with fabric. I joined the Irish Patchworks Society in 2002 and started sessions. I’ve made several hundred quilts since then, and when I started, each quilt I made was an exploration of a new technique. To see whether I liked it or not. The Irish Patchworks society has been amazing in that I’ve had the opportunity to do workshops with international world-renowned quilters that they bring in to do shows and to teach, which has been incredible.”

“I have made amazing friends through the patchwork society. We have branches around the country, and our local branch is called the Mid-West Branch. We meet every second Thursday, in the Baptist Church, in Caherdavin. Guests are always welcome to visit,” added Paula.

Paula spoke about how she has always loved art and has been drawing since she was a child.

Paula Rafferty

Pictured at the Limerick School of Art & Design for the EQA Patchwork and Quilting Exhibition is Paula Rafferty, International Representative of the Irish Patchwork Society. Picture: Conor Owens/ilovelimerick.

Paula said, “I’ve drawn since I was a kid, I’ve always drawn. I loved making or doing things and have always had either a pencil or a knitting needle in my hand. I’ve always kept myself busy through art. My parents discovered I was quite good at it and so sent me to classes. It’s a creative process. For me, I have to do this sort of thing to keep myself sane. I think as human beings; we are naturally creative.”

Paula is currently working on another project, where she will be bringing quilts to South Africa as part of an Irish Patchwork Society exhibition, in conjunction with the South African Patchwork Guild and the German Patchwork Guild.

The Mid-West Branch of the Irish Patchwork Society will start meeting again on Thursday, September 12, at the Baptist Church, in Caherdavin, Limerick.

Keep up-to-date with the Mid-West Branch of the Irish Patchwork Society by following them on Facebook.

For more information on the Irish Patchwork Guild, go here.

For more stories on the Irish Patchwork Guild, go here.

For more information on LSAD, go here.

For more stories on LSAD, go here.

Pictures: Conor Owens/ilovelimerick

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