Paula Rafferty

I have been sewing since I was a small child, taught my mother and I started making clothes for my Sindy Doll.
I studied Fashion Design at Limerick School of Art and Design (LSAD) from 1987-1991 and after running my own business for a few years, specializing in stretch and sequined fabrics, I returned to college to train as an Art teacher during 1995-1996. On finishing college I worked with retirement groups, which taught me the value of lifelong learning. By accident I started working in Limerick Prison in 1998 and have been teaching full time there for the last 20 years. I regularly exhibit my student’s work and help them to continue their studies on release.

I joined the Irish Patchwork Society in 2002, the Quilters Guild in 2012 and have since made approximately 200 quilts since, mainly large. When asked I usually say that I make two types of quilts: Art Quilts for exhibition and Therapy Quilts to keep me sane!
With my Art Quilts I work in series, several at the same time, until I feel I have exhausted the theme. Therapy Quilts are usually utilitarian in nature and composed of simple shapes like squares or strips, which are cut in large amounts and randomly sewn together. I find the act of repetitive sewing calms and keeps me sane during wintertime or when going through emotional stress.

I exhibit my work and teach patchwork and quilted techniques internationally and currently I am the International Rep for the Irish Patchwork society.
The Irish Quilters’ Showcase Exhibition, a juried annual exhibition, which I organize and curate is in its fifth year.

Quilting has opened up the world to me, brought so many wonderful people into my life and taught me so much. I look forward to the wonderful techniques and skills that I have yet to learn.

Recently I have qualified as a Quilt Judge with the Quilters Guild and can only speak very highly of the course and the tutors, I have learned so much and will continue to learn and increase my knowledge and skills to develop personally and to share with others.

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Get in touch with me

I accept commissions and I am available as a teacher and a speaker.

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