Periodic Table Quilt

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History of the Chemistry Periodic Table Quilt

A group of quilters in the chemistry department thought it would be a good idea to make a quilt of the periodic table. It was to be group project and involve everyone, even those that couldn't sew with the hopes that a sense of community would emerge. The leaders of the project were Marcy Tracey (Chemistry NMR Technician) and Shirley Black (Chemistry Lab Instructor). They determined what fabrics to use and cut the required blocks for each element. A simple method of cut and paste using a product known as Wonder Under was used for the letters and numbers and, in a lot of cases, for any pictures as well. A standard set of numbers and letters were used by everyone to give the quilt some continuity; other than that, there were no restrictions on what could be done with the block. Some chose to do a piece of art while others wanted a design that reflected the use of the element. This whole process took a lot longer than anyone anticipated, but eventually all of the blocks were collected. There were still some missing so the steering committee went to work to complete any missing blocks. Shirley Black took on the task of sewing the quilt together.

Some of the chemistry quilt steering committee members are pictured above. From left-to-right: Lee Hanlan, Sophie Lavieri, Shirley Black, Marcy Tracey and Sharon Hope. The almost completed quilt is on the floor.