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"A stitch in time saves lives" must be the motto of many Utah quilters. Even now they are hurriedly stitching to finish their quilts before the annual Holiday Quilt Auction Friday, Oct. 27. The proceeds from the auction will be turned over to LDS Hospital to be used for a number of lifesaving research projects.

Approximately 60 quilted items ranging from small Christmas tree ornaments to quilts large enough to cover king-size beds will be sold in both silent and live auctions.These colorful, attractive quilts were created by individuals, families, senior citizens, church organizations and Utah quilting groups. Some of those groups include Avenue's Quilters, Busy Bee Quilters, Hearts and Hands Quilt Guild, Holladay Quilters, Needles and Friends, Quilt Addicts, Quilt Days, Quilt Set, South Cache Quilters and Utah Valley Quilt Guild.

The opening, by invitation only, will begin Friday, Oct. 27, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Little America Hotel, 500 S. State. The dinner is set for 6:45 p.m. and the live auction at 8 p.m. They will be held in the hotel's Grand Ballroom.

The public is invited to view the show for one week starting Saturday, Oct. 28. Viewing hours are 9:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. daily, except for Nov. 3. The show will end that night at 5. All quilts will be displayed on the mezzanine level of Little America Hotel.

Hostesses who have volunteered to help with the show attended a preview Oct. 17. They were shown most of the quilted items that will comprise the show and were told that they must wear white gloves when handling the quilts.

Only a quilter who has designed, pieced and quilted can fully understand why these quilts should be handled with respect. They are the end product of hours of dedication; each stitch expresses the quilters' love and caring.

Some quilts reflect a traditional flavor, as does "Antique Double Wedding Ring." The quilt top was donated by Jean Christensen and quilted by women in the Monument Park 17th Ward.

"Annie's Quilt" was displayed unfinished. It is still being quilted by Quilt Days and completed by Helen France.

Mrs. Raymond Work, past president of the Utah Quilt Guild, donated a quilting kit her mother had given her. Work carried the kit with her for 50 years before donating it. Lucille Strong and Carol Morgan appliqued it, while Eunice Young did all the quilting.

"A quilt stitch is like handwriting," Young said. "And it's important that the stitch be consistent throughout, since it's especially noticeable on white."

Cody Mazuran's "Christmas Collection" will be sold as a package. The Christmas tree skirt was quilted by Mary Fisher and the stocking stitched by Nedra Mazuran, Cody's mother-in-law. Cody pieced and quilted the tiny tree ornaments.

The embroidery on the quilt "In the Garden" was done while a woman stood vigil over her husband for two months in LDS Hospital. She said, "Embroidering the quilt blocks kept my mind free from worry."

The "Tennessee Waltz" quilt is amazing. Only straight pieces of material were used in the quilt; yet, when you see the completed quilt, you'll insist that it contains curved lines.

"There's One in Every Neighborhood" shows a series of houses. But one house is different from all the others. You'll have to see the quilt to find out why.

Cody Mazuran had a difficult time getting enough good pieces from a worn-out quilt to to design her "Antique Double Wedding Jacket." After a number of attempts, she finally did it. And the end result is highly attractive.

These are only a few of the many exciting quilted items that will be on display in the Holiday Quilt Show this year. Admission is $2.50 per person.

The quilt has become the symbol of LDS Hospital's commitment to the well-being of its patients and their families in a setting of warmth, comfort and compassion.

The Holiday Quilt Show and Auction not only provides LDS Hospital with money for needed medical research and education, it does much more. It highlights local and regional quilt craftsmanship. And it also provides educational, cultural and entertaining experiences for Utah citizens.