“I came to NC in 1983. Some goals I had in coming here were to own my own home, know my neighbors and be able to stop and talk to a friend in the grocery store. Not lofty goals, but after living in New York City and Boston for nine years, I was ready to find a community. My Ohio roots were asserting themselves in a good way. I migrated West from the greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro area to Burlington in 1986 and since then all the original goals and more have been realized.
“One of my earliest memories is sitting on my Grandma Mae’s lap, sewing with her. She worked the pedal on the floor to make the treadle sewing machine work and I pushed the material under the needle. My Mum was a sewer also, and a Home Economics teacher. I grew up wandering through the aisles of a fabric store; enjoying the colors, textures and patterns. It is still the same today when I have an idea and a pattern in mind; the next step is going from a black and white line drawing to living color. I walk through the aisles of a fabric store listening for a certain color or patterns to speak to me. This step is crucial–it is a large percentage of the magic of the whole piece.”
B.J. has generously donated an example of her early work to The ArtsCenter’s Silent Auction, on display throughout the month of June in the Nicholson Gallery. To place a bid for this hand- and machine-made quilt, visit our box office or call us at (919) 929-2787. Bids starting at $200 will be accepted until 5PM on June 28th.
Learn more about B.J. and her work at