Sad news filtered its way through the Australian quilters' network today. Narelle Grieve, who had been ill for many months, passed away early this morning.
Narelle was an inspirational quilter. After returning from a stint living in the USA with her family in 1986, Narelle began teaching patchwork and quilting. She subsequently became President of The Quilters' Guild of NSW Inc. Narelle had such an influence on the Australian quilt world - she instigated judged quilt shows in Australia, valued quilts and began a teacher accreditation programme for the Guild. Narelle wrote for Australian Patchwork and Quilting magazine for over 15 years, won many prizes for her quilts and taught widely.
In 2004, Narelle was made a life member of The Quilters' Guild of NSW Inc. The following year, she was the inaugural recipient of the Rajah Award, an award made for an outstanding contribution to Australian Quilting.
I have known Narelle for many years. She was cheeky, with a naughty sense of humour. You could always count on Narelle for calling a spade a spade - she was never backward in coming forward with her opinions. She was always encouraging and urged people to try new things. I was at the award dinner when she won the Rajah Award and I remember how totally flummoxed she was. After she made a dignified acceptance speech, she spontaneously burst into tears and was sincerely amazed that she had been honoured with the award.
Thank you Narelle for all that you gave to the quilting world and all the advice (often unsolicited!!) that you gave to me. Rest in peace - I will miss you.