Norma has kindly agreed to step in as alternate judge for Kathy Doughty in the event that travel from Australia is restricted in October 2022. We appreciate this support as we plan for our event in these challenging circumstances!

Norma Slabbert is a quilt maker and writer from Hamilton who grew up on a Bushveld farm and a mission station in Lebowa, South Africa.  She started doing fabric collage in the eighties, while working as a pre-school teacher.  

During a mid-career break, Norma backpacked through Europe to visit major galleries and museums to study art and quilt making. She visited quilt shows, took a quilt class, and researched quilt making at British museums and libraries. The experience inspired a lifelong commitment to quilt making. After returning from Europe, Norma worked as an art gallery curator in Cape Town.  She initiated and curated a number of quilt exhibitions in the city gallery – which was ground-breaking at the time.

She returned to university in midlife, to fulfil a passion for writing and to do an Honours in Journalism.  After qualifying as a journalist, the focus of her work shifted to quilts that were grounded in the realities of daily life. Norma’s migration to New Zealand, in the late nineties, inspired more changes in her work.  As a migrant her quilts often comment on emotional truths, coming and going, isolation, belonging, place and displacement, and the space between.

Norma has written and published extensively on quilt making.  She completed a quilt Judging Skills Certificate during the late nineties – presented by Jeannie M Spears from the US.  She has been a quilt juror at numerous quilt shows, including most recently, the 2019 Great New Zealand Quilt Show and the 2021 SAQA Oceania Regional Exhibition.  

Norma is working towards her fourth solo quilt exhibition to be held towards the end of 2022. 
For more information, please visit:

Instagram: quiltmakernorma