It All Started When
I have been sewing since school, so a long time (well just over 20 years) but never really got into quilting, I mean several years ago I did start one, but didn’t get far and put it in a shoe box where it still is today (not for long though), it was the bias binding I knew I would have to do and I just kept getting side tracked and do other things instead.
Ive worked as a machine embroidery teacher in 2 different quilt shops and nope, the only time I showed an interest was when I decided I would sign up for a block of the month quilt while working at one of the quilt shops, I was sort of talked into it but did think “Oh yes I will do this, its pretty”,, Mmmm $36 per month for the next 10 months I had a pile of packages which yes, also ended up in a box, now thats a pretty expensive pile of packages which I definitely do intend to start And finish.
Since I was more into embroidery but always thought I would try quilting “one day” I decided right, thats it, I’m making a quilt, an Easy quilt with embroidery and I started, I chose to do a rag quilt since they looked Easy and had no bias binding to do :)
I set off choosing my designs and figuring out how I would do it all, of course I had to make it difficult by wanting the back to be like a checker board with 2 different fabrics didn’t I?,, I couldn’t just have a plain one piece back for my first quilt, so not only did I have to match the seams on top, I also had the match them on the back, Oh the joys :)
I embroidered all my blocks
I then added batting and backing to each block and stippled around each embroidery design, I LOVE stippling!
Here are a few close ups
See how tiny my stipple is, I really enjoyed making these, Next I put the rag quilt together
I think it looked good and I did have fun (even with the backing matching seams issue), it was all good,, The quilt is Huge, I didn’t follow any pattern or worry about standard bed sizes, I just made it so the embroidered squares formed a pattern LOL.
So what happened next was I showed my Mum, who had recently had an interest in embroidery, not quilting. She really liked the embroidery designs but didn’t really like the “rag” look, which is fine, I Love rag quilts but everyone likes different things, all good :)
She set out to do all the embroideries and she picked fabric she likes and then asked me if I would turn it all into a quilt for her, “Gasp” oh of course I said yes but I’m thinking “how”, without making it into a rag quilt.
I sat for several days with a graph book drawing out different quilt layouts, then doing the math to make sure I had enough fabric for the pattern including seam allowance. I came up with a pattern I was happy with and off I went, now let me say, this quilt did take several weeks as I pieced the top, then sat drawing for another few days different quilting designs, oh yeah and I decided I would do Feathers, yes feathers,, the only quilting design I was good at or even tried before was Stippling LOL so feathers it was going to be around the border, here are some photos
Let me say it was Hard work, managing the weight of the quilt while stippling around those embroideries was difficult, there were times I asked my Son and hubby to stand on either side of me to hold the weight, I had quilting gloves on to help but with all those embroideries it was also quite heavy. I did this on my old Janome 1600P. Its Queen size.
Every night after I had finished working on it I went and laid it on the bed in the spare room, In the morning when I went in to get it, the light would be shining on it and all the quilting was really standing out and I was really happy with how it was turning out and determined I would do a good job as it was my Mums so I really wanted her to love it and she does, the look on her face when I gave it back was priceless :)
Then Mum and my Hubby wanted to enter it into the local quilt show, they loved it that much, I wasn’t that keen because I thought, well I know I did a good job with it and was happy with how it turned out and Mum was over the moon with it, but that doesn’t mean we should go that far, a quilt show, I wasn’t confident, Guess what? It came Second, woooohoooo :)
It was Amazing, I nearly cried LOL How awesome is that! The quilt is hanging up on a wall at Mums, it was a great and special Mother & Daughter team effort :)
Ahhh But then, I starting thinking WOW if I can do that on a domestic, imagine what I could achieve with a long arm! I was totally Hooked on quilting and seriously can not believe I didn’t start 20 years ago, or at least a LOT sooner.
Fast forward about 6 months and my Brand spanken new Gammill Longarm quilting machine is on order.
Hubby and his Dad decided we need to do a bit of an extension to my workroom to fit everything in so they began
Its quite a big room,, after it was finished, we painted inside and out, flooring went in, the sliding door was moved forward,, this room is now where my embroidery machines are and few other machines.
A few days after the room was ready she arrives :) I can’t even explain how excited I was
4 men lifting out the 14 foot frame
Now the setting up begins
There she is, all that was needed was her module (screen). This was an Awesome day and the the beginning of my quilting journey which all started with a rag quilt that lead to a Mother & daughter team effort quilt.
It is this, my journey that I want to share and also so I have a place where I can look back at my own work and see my progress as times goes on :)
So how did you start quilting or any other hobby or craft?