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Easton Quilter's Wrapped Up in Her Work

Nancy Fowski delicately threads a spider-web thin silk strand through the needle's eye and begins to appliqué by hand. It’s a process that requires much patience and attention to detail. "Most people don't do that anymore," she said in her Easton home. "It's done on a machine because they want instant gratification like the rest of the world. You can't blame them."

Fowski is always ready with a quick smile, and she and her husband, Walt, exude warmth. Their home is a testament to the family's creativity. Her quilts hang from the wall, their daughter's intricate wood creations sit atop tables and Walt's father's artwork decorates various rooms.

Nancy's adventures in quilting began 25 years. "My in-laws went on a trip down South," she remembered. "And they bought a book about how to make a quilt, and some fabric." At first she was skeptical. But after attending several quilting club meetings, she became inspired.

Because she stitches by hand, her creations can take a year or more to complete. The quilt in her bedroom took more than a decade. "I would work on it piece by piece," she said. "I might take a year off. ... It's relaxing. I'd take a piece on a trip with me and work on it. I'm not the kind of person who can just sit and watch TV."

Her inspiration comes from everywhere. The seasons, magazine articles, other quilts or artwork. She's always looking for new challenges, and her basement workshop is filled with tools and gadgets for experimenting with designs.

"It gives you patience," she said of quilting. "What I find is quilting goes over into your life in a very interesting way. A quilter will always look at the simplest way to do anything. How does it take the least time, anything like that. ... So that if you're trying to clean your house or do something like that, all of a sudden something will come to mind and you'll do it more easily."

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