Sunday, February 28, 2016

Thoughts on Being a Scavenger

As a guild member, I get to peruse both a free and library table at our monthly meetings. I tend to stick to the free table so that I don't accidentally grab things that I'll forget to return at the next meeting. What can I say? I know myself.

The free table is its own little treasure trove. In any given month, you could find non-cotton fabrics, ribbons, magazines, threads...the list goes on. At first, I felt absurd gravitating to that side of the room on meeting breaks. I have money, right? Surely, I can buy patterns and notions and whatever I want?

When I think about it, it comes down to the age we live in.  Several other guild members have pointed out to me that I'm very lucky to come of age as a quilter in the Internet Era.  I get better access to classes, videos, and naturally, more free patterns than I could ever hope to use in a lifetime. Really, gleaning what I like from a non-virtual trove was the logical next step.

I still love my more formal resources, of course. I have plenty of purchased fabric and at least four quilting books, along with patterns and needles and the like. However, I can't deny the little thrill I get when I know I made something in slightly more economical fashion. I love this hobby, but it does add up.

Don't be afraid to scavenge, folks! You'll never know what you could find.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Jelly Roll Race Quilt and Flag Quilt

After the little scrappy disaster that was my first quilt top, I took my mother's recommendation to stick to some classic or simple patterns, at least for a start.  These two projects were tops that lingered together for most of 2015, so I've included them in the same post.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

A Beginner's Mess - 3/29/2015

My first little project proved that no amount of theory will make up for actual practice. I'd watched videos, I'd helped Mom with layouts, I'd read plenty of books and patterns, and I knew my way around a rotary cutter. Surely I could whip up something quick and breezy, right?

Saturday, February 6, 2016

How I Came to Quilting - a Brief Timeline

  • June 2011 - My mother and I were walking through the Annapolis Quilt Show, and I saw an absolutely gorgeous pattern for sale.  Mom hadn't sewn in some time, but seeing my interest, she said she'd be willing to haul out her machine and make a blanket for me out of the pattern in my preferred colors. I picked up fabrics in pink and blue strips.

  • Christmas 2011 - My "Bali Brickyard" quilt was presented to me as my main Christmas present.

  • Summer 2013 - I graduated from college and moved back home.  Job hunting was a grind, and I found my relaxation in helping Mom with projects, i.e. sorting scraps and assisting with layouts.

  • November 2013 - My mother and I went on Quilter's Quest for the DC region.  All of the shops were wonderful, but I was especially smitten with Jinny Byer's shop in Great Falls, VA.

  • February 2014 - I started my current job.  The pay was and is fantastic, but I knew I couldn't justify buying a machine of my own until I had a car.  Project assistance for my mother continued.

  • March 2015 - I was at a sew-in when someone asked the room "Does anyone want a free sewing machine?" My ears perked up and I asked, "Free? What's the catch?" The person explained to me that the Singer 2010 had belonged to her late mother and worked just fine, but was doing no good just sitting around gathering dust, and she wanted it to go to a good home where it would be used. I said yes, and after verifying that we had room at home to take it, I got to work.
The rest, as they say, is history!