1. When did you begin quilting?
It was about 12 years ago. I was in grad school and my apartment was near a quilt store. It had been years since my Home Ec days and I used to go in and fondle the fabric. When my sister-in-law announced that she was pregnant I promptly decided I would make a baby quilt. So I tuned up my Mom’s 1962 Brother, carried it on the train, and spent a weekend making a simple Irish Chain. I was hooked! Quilting became my outlet in grad school – when I quilted I couldn’t stress about school because I needed to pay attention or I would make mistakes.
2. Why do you quilt?
In all honesty, I would describe quilting as a compulsion for me. I feel the need to create, to push myself, to play. Having kids disassembles your personality, and it’s up to you to put it back together. But like the first folks to take apart a VCR, not all the parts go back in. After having my girls, some things were left out, but those things I kept are more vital to me. And feeding my creativity is one of those things. Blogging also helps me do that by writing, sharing my process, and learning from the many talented folks I found out there.
3. What is your favorite quilting tip?
Relax. We all get so hung up on making things perfect, or we obsess about fabric choices and layouts and we don’t need to. Generally, you are the only one who might see a mistake or flaw, not anyone else. And relaxing encourages people to break free from patterns and kits, something very important to me. And when in doubt, have a drink and start over.
4. What was your inspiration for your Quilt Festival quilt?
Roots is a quilt for my father. He is sick and the family wanted to come together to make a quilt for him. My sister-in-law is also a quilter so her and I led the charge. She and my sister came down to sew one weekend. When we first came together it was interesting that we all had the same idea – a quilt of our Baba and Dido’s garden. These are the roots of our family, the roots that we all grew from. And in the end, it is a quilt that we hope warms our dad, body and soul.
5. Do you sew other things?
Not generally. I am really, really bad at following patterns. And I don’t know enough about sewing clothes to be creative on that front. But every now and then I’ll try something just because I love the idea of it.
6. Anything else you would like us to know about you?
In addition to quilting I also write. You can read some of my food writing at my other blog: Backseat Gourmet. And in September I will be launching a new career path – as full time mom and part-time writer.
Thank you so much for taking the time to share with us Cheryl! I love each of your quilts, and hearing your thought process is always a great insight. Congratulations on your recent leap – I’m excited to see where your dreams take you!