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Famed quilt in Canton

Blum Blum
By Paul E. Kandarian
March 6, 2011

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: Fabric-art lovers, take note: The “Supper Quilt,’’ modeled after Leonardo da Vinci’s renowned work “The Last Supper,’’ will be on display at Blue Hills Regional Vocational Technical High School in Canton March 19 and 20.

A renowned work of stitchery that has traveled the world, the quilt was created by a dentist, Dr. Donald Locke of Waxahachie, Texas, in 1999. It took 2 1/2 years to complete, is 15 feet wide and 5 1/2 feet tall, and is made up of 51,000 half-inch squares. Its appearance in Canton will mark just the second time it has been shown in New England, organizers said, and the first time in Massachusetts.

“It’s definitely a big deal,’’ said Marci Toma, a member of the Walpole-based Rhododendron Needlers Quilt Guild, which is sponsoring the event. “People who love quilting will want to see this.’’

Locke hand-dyed all the fabric, resulting in more than 350 shades of color, and artist Linda Taylor did all the machine quilting for the work, said Toma, a resident of Braintree.

It comes to Canton as part of the Rhododendron Club’s biennial quilt show, “Traditions and Treasures,’’ at which quilters from 40 area communities will display more than 150 pieces. Many have won awards in regional, national and international shows.

The club’s 100 or so members meet once a month to discuss their hobby and also plan charity projects, which have included making quilts for new mothers and for military personnel overseas, Toma said.

“People in quilting know where all the quilt stores are, and with more closing down, finding a place to get fabric is harder, and quilters will travel a long way to find one,’’ she said, noting that a new one, Heart in Hands, was opened recently in Weymouth by Jan Byron, Libby Flanagan, and Stacey Drew.

“I called them personally to welcome them to the area, it’s nice to have one so close,’’ Toma said.

The show will also feature an exhibit loaned by the New England Quilt Museum entitled “Lobstah to Green Monstah.’’

Tickets are $7 for one day, or $10 for both; the show runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 19, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 20.

For information on the show and the quilting group, visit

BELLE OF THE BALL: Anton’s Cleaners, a dry-cleaning company with stores across the area, is holding its seventh annual Belle of the Ball prom-dress collection drive. The dresses are cleaned and given to girls who could not afford to buy a gown for their proms.

The program has provided nearly 1,500 dresses over the years, said Arthur Anton Jr., executive vice president of the company. Dresses can be any size but must by free of damage and not more than four years old. They can be dropped off until April 1 at any Anton’s Cleaners or Jordan’s Furniture stores.

To participate, the girls must be referred by a guidance counselor, teacher, or social service personnel. They will then be invited to pick up a dress next month at Simmons College in Boston.

For more information or to find a store location, visit

DESIGN HONOR: Architect Anthi Frangiadis, founder of Archit8 Studio in Wareham, won an honorable mention in the Whale’s Tooth Station design competition, sponsored by New Bedford and the state Department of Transportation.

The city and state are seeking innovative ideas to create a transportation hub that will reflect the city’s history, character and vision for the future. Frangiadis’s design was “The Whale over Route 18,’’ showing a whale’s tail anchoring the station on Purchase Street with the spine arching over Route 18 as a pedestrian and bus bridge, she said.

The state will use ideas from the competition to create the station as it brings commuter rail to the Southcoast area. To see her design, visit

BUSINESS BRIEFS: Neal Braver, owner of a Liberty Tax Service franchise in Brockton, was named chairman of the youth council at the Brockton Area Workforce Investment Board. He has been an active member of the board since September 2008. . . . Edward Blum, owner of Makeovers Salon & Spa in Easton, was part of the L’Oreal team for the Gwen Stefani L.A.M.B. show at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York City last month. Blum was invited to serve on L’Oreal’s exclusive team of hairdressers at the show. Last year, Blum served on the Wella style and color team for celebrity designer Donna Karan. . . . Kevin Richardson of Hull is now with New England Mortgage Partners, an affiliate of Wells Fargo Bank and the financial arm of Norwell-based Jack Conway Real Estate Co. With more than 10 years of experience as a mortgage consultant, Richardson provides home-financing services to customers in Hull, Cohasset, Scituate, Marshfield, and Plymouth.

Paul E. Kandarian can be reached at