Kelly McCleary, or the “The Quirky Quiltress,” began quilting when she was 22, and has been quilting professionally since 2015. A Monticello, IL, native, she had made name for herself as a maker focused on non-traditional techniques, materials, patterns, and designs. A student of Japanese language and culture, her shibori and batik dye work and distinctive color palette are instantly recognizable. In addition to travelling across the Midwest for arts hows and festivals, McCleary’s work has also been featured in the documentary series “Art Now” for UPTV6 and in “At Home in Central Illinois” magazine. As a guitar player, much of McCleary’s work is influenced by music, and she makes frequent tips to Nashville in search of inspiration. McCleary is also pursuing a degree in Studio Art and Print-Making.