Family tribute to popular village character Susie, 61
Quilter’s fancy dress shop also provided for pantos, plays and proms
A loving mum and businesswoman with a penchant for patchwork has sadly died at the age of 61.
The heartbroken family of Susie Russell, from Pluckley, say they will remember her huge smile and contagious laugh following her death last month.
Mrs Russell had been in and out of hospital since August last year but sadly suffered a heart attack on January 30, from which she never recovered.
She leaves behind husband of 42 years Pete, 68, son Paul, 34, daughter Sam Cartwright, 39, and grandchildren Lauren, Jasmine, Harvey, Alyshia and Leo.
Mrs Cartwright said: “Mum had a huge smile, contagious laughter and was incredibly generous with support she gave to others.
“She would make cushions and quilts for people, and cakes. She was well known in the village. People would pop into her shop just to see mum.
“She will be sorely missed by many.” Susie Russell as a pearly queen; inset, Susie with husband Pete, when they were dating
Mrs Russell ran Disguise & Gowns Fancy Dress, in Pivington Mill, Pluckley, for more than 30 years, and had about 4,000 outfits in her collection.
She provided costumes for all the pantos in the village, as well as school plays and proms.
Mr Russell, who met Susie at a dance in Ashford when she was 16, said her real passion was patchwork.
He said: “She had one hobby that was very time-consuming. She was a quilter. She was besotted with them. She made dozens for family and friends.”
Mrs Cartwright added: “Her major obsession which has taken over her workshop and every room at home is patchwork.
“Mum has sewn by hand dozens of quilts for family, friends and charity for celebrations, in memory and as a hug!”
Mrs Russell, who was born in Ashford, even helped launch the Pluckley Patchwork exhibitions with friend Judy Poole. The third one will take place this year in her memory.
Mrs Russell’s funeral will be held at St Nicholas Church, The Street, Pluckley, on Thursday, February 25, at 1.30pm and then at Charing Crematorium from 2.40pm.
Afterwards people are invited to The Dering Arms pub, in The Grove, Pluckley.
Donations in her memory will go towards the village hall, with cheques payable to Pluckley Parish Council Village Hall Account and can be sent to Earl & Co Funeral Directors in Ashford.