Today’s feature is Karen of Blooming Poppies! Karen has been blogging for a year, and attended the Sewing Summit with us! I hope you enjoy getting to know Karen better —
1. When did you begin quilting?
I began quilting when my oldest daughter was almost two, just over 5 years ago. We were at Joanne’s, looking for glue or something, and she pointed out this cute little pink and purple fairy/star fabric. I don’t know what came over me but right then and there I had the vision of a quilt for her. I didn’t know the first thing about quilting but had seen my grandma make a few when I was little. I bought that fairy fabric, some coordinating fabric and went home to find where my old sewing machine was buried. After getting reacquainted with my machine- a ten year old Kenmore I bought a Sears, I got to work designing her quilt. I don’t think I even knew that patterns existed. I have to laugh about it now, how much I didn’t know that I didn’t know; 1/4 inch seams, matching seams, rotary cutter??? ha!! Ignorance is bliss I suppose, I enjoyed the process much more than I expected.
With a brand new baby as well as my toddler at the time however, my ability to keep making quilts was limited. So I made a couple more in those first three years but I would say it was just in the last two years, after our third and last baby got a bit older, that I have really become serious about quilting and sewing. I have learned so much, all self taught, so mostly by the many mistakes I have made.
2. Why do you quilt?
I quilt because I have to. I feel happy when I’m designing a new quilt. I love the process of creating things, and am drawn to all things artsy/crafty, but quilting is by far my favorite “medium”. I see my design wall as a blank canvas just calling out for some color, line, design, etc. I love the limitless possibilities in quilting and I have grown to love the community as well. I have been so inspired and supported by the Modern Quilting blogging world, my own personal quilting blog, Flickr groups, and my local Modern Quilt Guild. I still consider myself a newbie quilter and I look forward to continuing this path and growing as a quilter/designer.
3. What is your favorite quilting tip?
Pay attention to detail, but relax and have fun with it at the same time!!! In my best moments, I like to treat it like a form of meditation.
4. What was your inspiration for your Quilt Festival quilt?
My inspiration came from my Kona Solids Sampler Card that I received at the Sewing Summit-Thank you very much!! That combined with all the colors of fall and the Indian Corn I was seeing at the pumpkin patch, farmer’s market, grocery store, etc. all came together in this quilt.
5. Do you sew other things?
Yes, I enjoy making bags, pillow covers, hot pads, etc. although I have only made a handful, I also like making clothing-dresses, skirts for my three young daughters. I will try just about any sewing project because I love learning new sewing skills and adding to my repertoire of knowledge. I am so inspired by all the creativity I see from other crafters, quilters, sewers. I love it all and, like probably all of us, just wish I had a bit more time for it all.
6. Anything else you would like us to know about you?
I am a closet bird-watcher/lover, and I love black jelly beans!!
Thank you for sharing your quilts, and your story with us Karen! I love the freedom in your quilts, and your tip is perfect! I love the hum of the machine as I work through a new design.
Have a great weekend everyone!