An Interview with Angela Huffman

This will be the first interview ever that I will issue a spew warning. As you begin reading Angela’s interview please, I’m pleading with you, do not have coffee, water, wine, margaritas, tea (iced, hot, cold or chai), lattes, cappuccino, milk or orange juice in  your mouth. I can not be held responsible for new phones (landlines, cell phones, smart phones, tablets, kindles, nooks), laptops and/or sewing machines especially those new computerized ones because they cost more than a car and buying a new car is not on my agenda this week.


AHuffmanMedHow did you get started quilting?
Okay… don’t laugh… I took a quilting class to meet men. Yep. True story. 🙂 I was in my mid twenties and the men in the bars weren’t men I wanted to meet so I thought I should take some adult education classes in my town to meet men. I decided to sign up for a cooking class and a hand quilting class. I’m sure you can guess that there weren’t any men in either class.
I learned a great deal about cooking and I learned that I hated quilting. The cardboard templates- ICK! The hand piecing- ICK! The hand quilting- DOUBLE ICK! I didn’t think about quilting for 6 years as I really hated everything about it except for the lesson where we were picking out fabrics/colors. I found quilting to be boring because, in my mind, it was very geometric and had a very pixelated look. It didn’t interest me at all.
Six years after that, I was a new mom in a new house with huge echoing walls in a large staircase. I wanted to hang something on the walls in the stairway that would absorb sound. I decided to walk into the largest fabric store in my region and there was a quilt hanging on their wall that used curved piecing. In that moment it was as if the clouds parted and a giant beam of light descended from the heavens while the angel chorus sang. I suddenly had the need.. the urge to quilt. But not just any quilt. I wanted to do curved, organic lines.
untitled-1800At the time my triplets were only 1 year old and I was a stay at home mom. Babies thrive on a schedule but I don’t. I felt like I was living in the movie Groundhog Day where every day is the same as the day before. I was withering. However, with quilting I could put the babies down at 7pm and then retire to my basement to play with sharp objects like rotary cutters, and pins. I could lay down a pair of scissors and WALK AWAY from them. It was heaven. My right brain was finally getting exercise and I could express myself.
I would quilt until 1 in the morning and then get up with the babies at 7am to start the day all over again until I could get back to my quilting. I then started seeking out other quilters so I could learn from them. That is where we met. I joined the Alex Anderson message board and found so many wonderful quilters that I’m still friends with today. I love that about quilting!
I love how quilting can infuse with your soul. It is so much more than a hobby. It consumes my brain most days and I love the friendships that have come from this art form we call quilting.
kathmiddle2Favorite colors & fabrics?
Any thing bright and batik! I’d never tell you that I love rust/orange but that is the color that consistently follows me home. I don’t have an explanation for it. I’m not super fond of thirties or civil war fabrics. They just don’t have enough “oomph” for me.
What machine do you piece on?
I’m a Viking girl. I love my machine because of the built in mechanism that raises my foot automatically when I stop with the needle down position. That one feature sold me on the machine.
What machine do you quilt on?
I’m lucky enough to quilt on a top of the line APQS Millennium on Bliss with Intelliquilter. It is fully tricked out and I love every gadget/goodie I’ve got mounted to my machine. It is my sports car. 🙂
kcourthousewsI know you do more than long arm quilting, would you share with us a bit more please?
I have a very eclectic career. In addition to longarm quilting, I am a voice over artist for television and radio. You can hear my latest demo over on my voice over website- AngelaHuffman.com
Because of my background in television production it was a natural step for me to begin recording online classes and tutorials for both free motion longarm quilting and computerized longarm quilting. You can find me on many of the APQS Longarm Machine YouTube videos and I have a video classes on my website for computerized quilters. I’ve been fortunate enough to be a repeat guest on Fons & Porter’s “Love of Quilting”. I’ve also written a number of national machine quilting articles for a variety of magazines.
But the biggest love of my life is my new brick and mortar shop in Louisville, Ky that opened in October of 2013. I run the APQS Store in Louisville and I have a thriving online shop as well. I have 7 APQS longarm machines in my shop available for rental as well as thread, notions, patterns, rulers, fabrics, books, and more. There is something about helping a quilter who has never worked on a longarm to finish their first quilt. I just love it. I made sure the space could handle a large classroom area as I am bringing in national longarm educators for the region. I’ve had Karen McTavish, Beth Schillig and, in August, Mary Fons come to teach! Of course, I also teach at the shop as well. I have a number of students who live too far from the shop to take classes so I’ve also got a number of DVDs that will be released in the next few months for those who’d like to take a 2D class from me.
khousemsDo you use patterns or make up your own?
As my interest in computerized quilting grew, I’ve stepped out into digitizing my own quilting motifs for computerized systems. I’m up to 78 different patterns so far and there are oodles more in my head waiting to get out. When it comes to patterns for piecing I typically make up my own using EQ7. I don’t know that I’d enjoy quilting as much if I didn’t design the pattern myself. I enjoy the challenge!
I do happen to know that your quilts have expressed some interest in quilting – are any of them still quilting?
I have 15 year old quilting triplet who compete nationally in longarm quilting. Now that they have entered high school, though, they don’t have much time to quilt. They have won numerous ribbons and tell me that if I just persevere then someday I’ll have as many ribbons as they do. 🙂
Angela can be reached:
Website and blog: QuiltedJoy.com
Instagram: quiltedjoy
Watch this space very soon for my official take on Angela’s new rulers.
I like them.
I need the longer one
they take a little practice but…what in quilting doesn’t
Happy Quilting!
Teri

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