Kaysville woman quilts her own storyNov 04, 2022 09:57AM ● By Karen Painter
Kaysville resident Sheila Stettler recently won an award of excellence at the Annual Best of State Quilt held at the Springville Art Museum.
Quilts are judged on the quality of artistry, design, color, originality, and general appeal and must be “admitted” into the show.
“Just to get accepted into the quilt show is an honor because the Springville show is the best,” Stettler said.
This is the third Award of Excellence Stettler has received from the show. This year’s award was for a memory quilt called “My Story,” which depicts Stettler’s childhood memories and iconic Kaysville buildings as they were in the 1960s to 1970s.
She created the floral and basket blocks in the center a while ago, and it sat for a long time until she decided to make “her story” around the edges one day.
“I wanted to put authentic buildings on my quilt and things that mean something to me. Every item on my quilt has a purpose. There is a message or story behind each one,” Stettler said.
Stettler grew up as Sheila Barton, the daughter of Russell and Helen Barton. She lived in the same house on 3rd Street in Kaysville until she was married. Stettler included a “Third West” street sign on the quilt next to her childhood home.
To produce her home and other iconic Kaysville buildings on the quilt, Stettler consulted old photographs and picked fabric to match the color of the buildings at the time. She carefully chose tan to represent the stone of the old Kaysville Elementary and green for the windows. Stettler attended school there from kindergarten to fifth grade.
“I included the playground as I remember it with the great big slide, the monkey bars, and swings,” Stettler said. “I remember playing foursquare, hopscotch, and tetherball.”
Other iconic buildings on the quilt are the old stone Kaysville City Library, the Post Office on Second North, Clover Club Foods Factory, the Kaysville Cemetery, King’s Drive-In sign, and the old Kaysville Tabernacle.
Stettler attended church in the Tabernacle throughout her childhood.
“That church means a lot to me,” she said. “I have many memories of playing inside that church before Primary in the middle of the week.”
There are only two people featured on the quilt, two little girls walking on a sidewalk lined with irises from a white house to a red house. The redhead is a young Sheila Barton (Stettler), and the blonde is her best friend, Jaylin Redden-Hefty.
“I was five when Jaylin moved in down the street, and we are still good friends 60 years later,” Stettler said.
The quilt also features “Daffy,” the pet skunk Stettler had in high school. The name was short for Daffodil.
“I couldn’t have a cat because I am allergic to cats,” she said. “I wanted a pet, but my parents didn’t want another dog. I found an ad for a de-scented skunk in the newspaper for $25. She ate cat food and used a little box. It was quite a novelty to have her.”
Stettler had to include beloved Grandma Effie Miller’s yellow stone house on Second North on the quilt. She would sit on one of the two red chairs on the porch and watch people come and go to the Post Office.
“I didn’t like to go into the post office because I was scared of the FBI most wanted posters on the wall,” Stettler said.
Another iconic building is Lagoon’s entrance by the “white” roller coaster. Stettler remembers taking a school bus in the summer to Lagoon to take swimming lessons.
Stettler included the large white granary belonging to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She always knew she was close to home when she saw the granary. She loved it so much she decided to ride her bike across I-15 to go and see it.
“It was a different time back then,” said Stettler. “There weren’t any fences and hardly any traffic. I look back on it now thinking it was pretty stupid, but it wasn’t to me at the time.”
Stettler also included artist LeConte Stewart’s home on the quilt. Her father did handiwork for Stewart.
“LeConte could paint, but he was not much of a fixer-guy,” she said. “He didn’t have money to pay because he was a poor artist, but one day I answered the door, and LeConte was at the door. He had a paper rolled up and told me to give it to my mom. It was a watercolor that he had done for my mom and dad as payment for my dad’s work.”
The last icon on the quilt is the Davis High Tile. It was in the main hall at Davis High and is currently roped off at the new high school entrance.
“If you stepped on that tile, you had to scrub it with a toothbrush,” Stettler said. λ