Date of Conferral

2018

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Psychology

Advisor

Susana Verdinelli

Abstract

Quilting is a self-chosen leisure activity for millions of women in the United States. Previous research on quilting suggested that quilting is influenced by the emotional state of the quilter. However, the emotional experiences generated during quilting have not been fully explored. The purpose of this qualitative narrative study was to explore quilters' perceptions of what quilting as a leisure activity does to enhance their well-being and increase flourishing. Positive psychology well-being theory was the theoretical foundation for the study. Semistructured interviews with 12 adult women who quilt as a leisure activity were the basis of the narrative inquiry. Data were recorded through in-person and telephone interviews that were transcribed and analyzed using thematic analysis to develop overarching themes. Findings revealed that quilting contributed to participants' well-being and built flourishing through three primary avenues: creativity, relationships, and positive emotion. Quilting provided an opportunity for creative expression and growth as artists. Quilt-making activity was centered around relationships with other quilters and with the larger community, and quilting was linked with positive emotion as participants experienced great joy in their quilting activities. This study has implications for increasing well-being and building flourishing in women through the adoption of quilting as a leisure activity.

Available for download on Tuesday, December 31, 2019

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