This summer, I am thrilled to have joined up with a group of amazing new quilt bloggers for the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop.
The hosts this year are:
I am so happy to be a member of Cheryl’s group, The New Bees.
I really encourage you to stop by the other New Bees members who are posting this week:
I started blogging in December of 2014 and the first quilt that I shared, Petals in the Wind (Low Volume Fail, Pastel Win!), is still one of my favorites. This quilt has been accepted into the American Quilter’s Society shows in Syracuse, Grand Rapids, and Chattanooga this year.
Petals in the Wind
Modern Log Cabin is the first quilt that I made after I returned to quilting last year. It is a “potholder” style quilt that reverses from grey to blue. This quilt was exhibited at the AQS show in Paducah earlier this year and will also be in the Modern Quilt categories at Grand Rapids and Chattanooga.
Modern Log Cabin
My pet project for 2015 is to make 50 mini quilts over the course of the year. So far, I have completed 23/50. Mini Quilt Mania gives me a format to experiment with a variety of quilting techniques without having to commit to a large project- it’s like keeping a sketchbook! Details about this project as well as a full list of the mini quilts can be found in the Mini Quilt Mania post. Here are a few of my favorites:
Happy New Year!
π, pi, PIE!
Marsala Mini Quilt
Now that you’ve seen a bit of my work, would you like to hear how I got here?
How did you learn to sew? My Mom started teaching me to sew before I was even in Kindergarten, so the details are a little hazy. My first quilt was completed when I was about eight, and once I was old enough for 4-H, I did sewing projects every year for the next decade. As I grew older, I moved away from quilting and toward clothing construction. Quilting by hand was just so painfully slow, and after finishing one twin sized quilt, I was done. In high school I did make a couple of machine quilted jackets that I received student awards for at the American Quilter’s Society Fashion Show in Paducah.
What did you do then? I went off to college to get a BFA, and since I could sew, I was assigned to do my work-study job in the costume shop of the Drama Department. I ended up double majoring in Painting and Theatre Design and Technology and later went on to earn an MFA in Scenic Design. I have worked with many theaters over the years, including ten seasons with the Utah Shakespearean Festival, and have worked at a few universities as well.
What has Theatre taught you about sewing? I am pretty sure I can sew almost anything at this point. I have created custom patterns and constructed clothing for almost every historical period, sewn stage curtains and drapes, done upholstery, and devised stage props ranging from drawstring bags to a 25′ long pleated, cylindrical (and very phallic), pink velour pillow with tassels at the ends. Knowing that something very specific has to be created within a certain time frame means there is little time to worry about messing it up- at some point you just have to dive in and make it happen. You also become really adept at solving the “challenges” that seem to develop with each project. This is excellent preparation for devising quilt patterns!
How did you return to quilting? I was at a job where I wasn’t required to sew a lot, and I thought that maybe I would sew something for myself. I wandered into a locally owned shop and was stunned to see all the new quilting fabrics. Pair that selection with fact that machine quilting is now far more acceptable (even expected!), and I was hooked!
Quilting Tip: Every once in awhile create your own challenge. Limit it to a small, quick project like a mini quilt or simple bag. Restrict parameters so once you start so you will have already limited the choices you have because sometimes having infinite options can really slow us down. I like to preselect a project, color scheme, and time frame. An example could be: One weekend to create a quilted bag using only the colors of black, white, grey, and green using fabrics and supplies already on hand. These small projects can force us to think creatively and can help improve our problem solving “toolbox” for other larger projects.
Blogging Tip: At the beginning of the year I created a eight inch square mini quilt that I have used as a background image for all blog “signage” that I have needed. It provides a consistent element within the blog, and I always have an image available for posts that don’t have a feature quilt picture.
- Right now I do freelance work. Most recently, I worked as a draper (costume pattern maker) for the Summer Nutmeg Series of the Connecticut Repertory Theatre. If you would like to see photos, please check out their Instagram at https://instagram.com/ctrepertorytheatre/ This summer we did Les Mis, Peter Pan, and Xanadu. The metallic silk chiffon dresses for Xanadu are especially fun- so shiny!
- I have traveled to 29 US states and lived in Ohio, Missouri, Utah, Kentucky, Connecticut, and Indiana
- My favorite food is a pretty even tie between pizza, saag paneer, and any sweet baked good
- Growing up I raised chickens (mostly White Plymouth Rocks)
- When I sew I almost always watch Netflix (Downton Abby is a favorite) or listen to a podcast (I’ve been catching up on Modern Sewciety)
- My most commonly requested baked good is a chocolate cupcake with peanut butter filling and chocolate cream cheese frosting. Yum!
I have been thinking a lot about gathering inspiration for quilt designs and color schemes and will probably be writing a post on this soon. What are your thoughts? Where do you find your inspiration? Do you tend to be more inspired by quilt related items (books, magazines, quilt shows, etc.)? Or do you tend to draw more inspiration from seemingly unrelated sources (art, nature, architecture, etc.)? Is it a combination of these?
Thank you so much for coming by, and I hope to have you visit again!