1. How long have you been a quilter?
I have known how to sew since I was a small child. My mom, both grandmothers and my babysitter all sewed. Of course I started out making clothes and continued through High School, but pretty much stopped when I started college. About the same time (early ‘80’s) my mother took up quilting. I didn’t sew or quilt again until I moved back to Upstate NY in the late 90’s, when my mom got me started quilting. Since my mom “quilted by check” – sent her quilts out to a long-arm quilter to be quilted, I did the same thing. I pieced a quilt top about every year or two. I have to say, I wasn’t really “into it”. It wasn’t until 2010 when my mom passed away and I inherited her stash, machines and other various quilting gadgets that I really started quilting in earnest.
2. Why do you quilt?
When I brought numerous truckloads of quilting supplies home from my mother’s, I realized that I actually had to take up quilting seriously, or get rid of all of my mom’s stuff. It was then that I found “Fresh Modern Quilts” group on Flickr. I realized there was a whole new world of Modern Quilting. I didn’t have to quilt like my mom; I could make it my own, but there still was a connection to my mom. I didn’t have to work with calicoes and fiddly little pieces; I could use solids and bold prints with big negative spaces that I could free-motion quilt myself. I love being able to express myself artistically and modern quilting has allowed me to do that. All of the wonderful quilt blogs that I found online give me encouragement to try new things. I learned to free-motion quilt mostly from blogs. They have been a big source of inspiration for me.
3. Why do you participate in Blogger’s Quilt Festival?
I love participating in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival, hopefully giving some inspiration to others. Quilt Bloggers have been such a big part of my growth as a quilter. I love looking through all of the quilts, they are all amazing. Unlike a lot of physical quilt shows, many times the bloggers share the story behind the quilt. I love reading about how or why the quilt was made. I have participated in every Blogger’s Quilt Festival since Fall 2011.
4.What was your inspiration for your Quilt Festival quilt, that you shared last spring? (pictured above)
The Elephants on Parade quilt that I shared in the Spring 2013 Quilt Festival was inspired by the elephant fabric. I knew that I wanted to use this fabric in a quilt for my step-daughter, she has always loved elephants and my goal was to create a quilt she would really love. She is fond of blues, teals and greens, so I knew it was a fit. The elephant block itself was a block that I designed, playing around with faux cathedral windows. I liked the idea of alternating colors around the elephant and figured out a way to create it. Since I love large negative space and I wanted the elephants to stand out, I used two panels of fabric on each side of the column of elephants. This was the first time I made something this big, a queen sized quilt that I quilted. I used a QAYG (quilt-as-you-go) method to join the panels, to make the FMQ more manageable. This also allowed me to make the quilt reversible. Being a step-mom to grown children isn’t always easy. I hope by putting a lot of love into quilts for them, they will be able to understand how much I truly love and care about them.
Thanks for sharing Pat! I love your beautiful quilting!