Alabama’s largest row crop took center stage July 16 at the Alabama Farmers Federation’s Cotton Fashion Sewing and Quilting Contest. The event was sponsored by the Federation’s Women’s Committee and was held in conjunction with the organization’s 33rd annual Commodity Producers Conference in Columbus, Ga.Seamstresses from Etowah, Geneva, Lauderdale, Russell, Talladega and Tallapoosa counties took top honors in the contest, which featured garments, quilts and wall hangings made of 100 percent cotton fabrics and blended fabrics of at least 50 percent cotton. The contest promotes the versatility, comfort and natural beauty of cotton clothing while preserving and honoring the art of quilt making.Barbara Gunter of Russell County took top honors in the wall hanging contest for her design featuring Scottie dogs. Jacqueline Bennett of Tallapoosa County placed first in the quilting contest for a wedding ring quilt featuring patchwork of red, blue and yellow. Second-place went to Medie Machen of Talladega County, and Annie Harris of Cleburne County placed third.In the sewing contest, Gail Oden of Etowah County won first place in the children’s clothing division for a colorful, floral-print dress that was modeled by her granddaughter, Sarah Oden. Faye McCord of Randolph County placed second for a dress modeled by Lindsay Fincher. Cari Wilson of Talladega County and Brenda Reese of Lee County tied for third place for their garments, which were modeled by Mary Wilson and Amanda Lehman, respectively.The young adult division featured garments sewn by contestants younger than 19 years of age. Miranda Kloberdanz of Lauderdale County took home the blue ribbon in that division for an outfit that included a lavender-colored blouse and floral skirt — both with hand-dyed lace of purple and yellow. Second-place honors went to Katherine Fuller of Shelby County for a dress modeled by Mary Ezell, and Hannah Brown of Randolph County placed third with a pink and green sleeveless dress.In the adult division, Margaret Caldwell of Talladega County placed first for a tailored, black dress with white flowers. Charlotte Davis of Geneva County was the second-place winner, and Bonnie Martin of Russell County placed third. Meanwhile, Glenda Stewart of Geneva County took home top honors in the heirloom division for her peach-colored dress featuring lace accents and a smocked bodice.Winners in each division received cash awards of $150 for first place; $100 for second place and $75 for third place. Contestants qualified to compete in the state contest by winning their respective county competitions.Last year, Alabama farmers harvested 510,000 acres of cotton, producing 820,000 bales valued at about $232 million. Nationally, Alabama ranks ninth in cotton production.
Cotton Sewing Winners Announced