I first started to make quilts for the children, friends and for our own bed. These quilts were mostly traditional in design. I soon had more quilts than beds, but by that stage I had become ‘addicted’ to patchwork, and started to exhibit my work with the local branch of the Irish Patchwork Society. There, others asked me to show them how to do patchwork and from that my teaching career took off. I have a City and Guilds Adult Education Teachers Certificate and a B. Sc. in Education and Training. I now give workshops in all types of patchwork and quilting and also work in Community Education in my local city.
While visiting friends in Brussels I found a book on the painter Vasiili Kandinsky, and was utterly fascinated by his paintings. This fascination has taken me down the contemporary patchwork path, and in turn led to my selection to participate in Annaghmakerrig. This was a week of intensive study with a group of national and international quilters. The travelling exhibition Annaghmakerrig III came out of this.
Over the last 40 years I have benefited tremendously from the Irish
Patchwork Society and by way of return I have served 3 two-year
terms of office on the National Executive, one term as Editor and
the most recent term as National Chairperson. Subsequently I was the
International Rep for the Society.
I have had the privilege of having one of my quilts selected for the front cover of a very early edition of Patchwork and Quilting. I have been one of the ‘lives’ featured in Limerick Lives. Published in 1997. (I hold that honour with Bill Whelan composer of Riverdance and Desmond Fitzgerald the Knight of Glin)
I was an ordinary member of the board of the Crafts Council of Ireland, and an ordinary member of the board of Aontas (National Association of Adult Education).
The following are some national and international exhibitions in which I have had work displayed.
- Quilt Expo 1, Salzburg, Austria. (1988)
- "Europaische Patchwork/Quilts", Galerie Del Mese-Fischer, Meisterschwanden, Switzerland (1990)
- "Hands Across the Border 2", Armagh County Museum (1991).
- Quilt Expo 3, The Hague, Holland. (1992)
- "Towards the Unknown Land", Chateau Musee de Chassey en Morvan, Bourgogne, France. (1992)
- "Annaghmakerrig III" (1994). This was a travelling exhibition which included: RHA Gallery, Dublin; Lancaster City Gallery, England; Tolouse, France.
- "Connecting Threads", (1995) Crawford Art Gallery, Cork. This was a travelling IPS National Exhibition.
- St. Pauls, Minnesota, USA. (1996).
- "Reflections", (2000) Bank of Ireland, Dame Street, Dublin.
- "Quilts Unlocked" (2002) OPW Atrium, 51 St. Stephens Green, Dublin. This is a travelling exhibition celebrating the 21st. anniversary of the Irish Patchwork Society.
- Between 2003 and 2019 I have taken part in several exhibitions around Ireland.
"What Colour is the Wind"
This is an experimental piece using satin triangles in shades of turquoise suspended from a fabric covered frame. It was inspired by the line from a song and was exhibited in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1996.