Quilting for Everyone: Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in the Quilting Community

Quilting is a unique form of art that has been around for centuries but has historically been associated with women and certain ethnic groups.  However, in recent years, the quilting community has become more diverse, inclusive, and welcoming to people of all backgrounds.  This trend has provided an opportunity to promote diversity and inclusion within the quilting community.  

Diversity and inclusion in quilting mean creating an environment welcoming to people of all backgrounds - including race, ethnicity, gender, age, ability or disability, and sexual orientation.  This means building a space where quilters can connect, share their creativity and skills, and learn from one another, regardless of their identity or journey to quilting.  

Here are some ways to promote diversity and inclusion in the quilting community:  

1.  Celebrate Diversity: The quilting community should acknowledge and celebrate diversity.  This can be done by highlighting quilters of different backgrounds on social media, at quilt shows, or in quilt magazines.  Ensure your quilt guild or group is inclusive and welcoming to all members.  

2.  Provide Opportunities for Skill-Sharing: One way to promote diversity and inclusion is by offering opportunities for quilters to share their skills and techniques with others.  This can be done through workshops, classes, or online tutorials.  Inviting quilters of different backgrounds to share their skills and knowledge can enrich the community and help others learn and grow.  

3.  Use Inclusive Language: Using inclusive language when communicating with other quilters is essential.  This means avoiding language that can be seen as derogatory or insensitive, such as gendered pronouns or terms that might be considered offensive to specific groups.  Similarly, quilters should be aware of their biases and respect different cultural practices and beliefs.  

4.  Foster Inclusivity in Design: Quilting design should be inclusive, meaning that it should be designed to include all community members.  This can be done by using fabrics and patterns representative of different cultures or by designing quilts accessible to people of different abilities.  

5.  Support Diversity and Inclusion in the Industry: The quilting industry should support diversity and inclusion by being aware of the products they produce and the messages they convey.  This includes using models of all backgrounds, stocking fabrics that represent a variety of cultures, and designing patterns that are accessible to all.  

Quilting is an art form that has become more accessible and inclusive in recent years.  It has transformed into a community of people passionate about creating beautiful and meaningful art pieces. 

The quilting community is known for its sharing and caring qualities, so it would take little effort to consciously and deliberately take steps to foster this inclusive and welcoming environment by prioritizing diversity and inclusion.  By doing so, we can celebrate the beauty of different cultures and experiences while supporting the growth and development of quilters of all backgrounds.  Oh, and what additional ideas, skills, and techniques could we acquire and share when our members become more diverse?  It strengthens us all and brings more beautiful handmade art to the world.


Janet Ruiz

Date 8/29/2023

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