Last night as I hand stitched the binding on a customer quilt (and watched “Time Warp” & “Mythbusters”) I got to thinking about the people who have influenced quilting in my life. This thinking started a few days ago when another quilter requested some input on a talk she needs to give sometime next week. In waiting a day or two before responding to her I had time to think about the quilting influences in my own life.
The quilt itself is a catalyst for thinking as well. The quilt was pieced by the woman’s grandmother sometime in the 30’s or 40’s, quilted by a group of quilters about 10 years ago and I’m putting on the binding. I think about the many hands that have worked on this quilt and the delight of the owner when it’s finally finished and she can use it, wrapping herself up in her grandmothers love.
Like a lot of quilters I’m mostly self-taught. I’ve had one class in machine quilting with Carol Blevins in Lancaster about 2 years ago and then the Ricky Tims Super Seminar earlier this year. I watched Simply Quilts when I could and now The Quilt Show. The machine quilting class changed how I quilt quite a bit with paying attention to my quilting posture and encouraged me to slow down my quilting speed, giving me more control as I quilt. Racing the machine while quilting can cause problems like: thread breakage, eye-lashing and frustration in general as the stitches are less consistent. Simply Quilts and The Quilt Show
The ladies at the Pelham Quilters (including Mary Anne & Renee) have influenced me – when I am stuck with a quilt I bring it there, lay it out somehow and invite the members to give me their suggestions and opinions. Something someone says will make sense and the quilt will come together. I’m grateful for their input and how it has influenced quilting in my life.
Quilters that I’ve met in various shops have influenced my piecing and quilting. I’ve been in shops with projects looking for just the right fabric for this or that and quilters will offer opinions when asked.
My husband is an influence in my quilting life. Because of his background in photography and his eye for detail I can turn to him and ask him how somethings working.
Then there are the quilters who ask for help…at quilt shops, at guild meetings, on line on the different message boards I’ve participated in throughout the years…having the opportunity and being able to explain a particular technique allows me to grow in quilting. As I explain I have a better understanding of the technique and how to use it.
I’m grateful for the quilting influences in my life. Thank you.