Thursday, April 27, 2006

Get ready, get set, go!

I had nothing to say today... So I decided to read around the ring (After my computer finally started to work at about 9:50) first. Well wouldn't you know, Vicky of LA Quilter blogged about her getting into quilting... & I decided that I could too... Sort of!

Once upon a time ago, I was a cross stitcher. (I started more of those that I finished too & I have cross stitch PIGS & to do patterns still! You never know the earth could spin out of its axis & I'd want to start cross stitching again...) Then one summer around 2000 I decided that I was going to start quilting. No pattern called to me, no LQS begged me to visit, no friends quilted, etc. So went to Michaels & bought a charm quilting book. (I was not going to do a traditional charm quilt, just use the shapes.) So I went to JoAnnes and bought some blue fabrics - CALICO's and a Judaic print - WHO KNEW? In the mean time, I was a cashier at Giant & during the lulls, I would draw on paper towels - quilting patterns. (The paper towels had hexagons quilted into it & my charm template pack had hexagons.) So I drew - are you ready a "Star." I traced my templates onto freezer paper, glued it to my fabric and was off. I had no idea on how to piece them together - but finially figured out something that would "work." (I cut with rotary cutter & only nicked myself a little bit...)

After creating innumerable charms, I searched the internet for a "quilt guild." (No idea how I knew there was such an animal.) & joined right up! I also signed up for the first class that they had - applique with Karen Kay Buckley. Boy was I in over my head. (I bought the WRONG fabric at Joannes, etc.) I learned a lot - the best thing was how to keep my needle on the top of the project. (I had been a cross stitcher - remember & this was my FIRST quilting class.) I bought her sampler book.

Meanwhile at the quilt, one of the gals gave me her old sewing machine. So the hexagons were NEVER touched again! (Someone adopted them when I had to downsize in 2005.)

I went home and bought fabric for a sampler quilt at Joannes - NO CONTRAST and started a few blocks - HATED IT! Turned it into a cat pad, by "birthing" it with fleece. I think if someone "Made" me make a sampler it would be absolute torture for me to this day. (But a beginner's class on it would have been a great foundation - if I knew there were such classes...)

BTW If you were not counting, up to this point, I had 3 UFO's - well the samepler I finished...

I was reading all kinds of library books - but adamant not to do it the "TEMPLATES" way.

I could go on, but it took me several months to "figure it out." I am basically self taught & have never been a perfectionist - so technique has never been aything that I "worried" about... I have some early quilts that can attest to that! (1/4 inch - that is an average right? Something we strive for but never attain...) I'm way better with that, but I still prefer easier stuff - so that if I am not perfect - it doesn't matter so much. :o)

Please do share you beginings - curious minds want to know!

10 comments:

cher said...

Amy, I finally caught up reading your blog...my goodness-you have a lot of quilt projects on the go! I hope you are enjoying working on them and getting excited about going to Australia.

Jeanne said...

HAHAHA -- just running past, but your remark about x-stitch and the world going awry made me roar! I'm in the ACCUMULATING x-stitch patterns stage. Figured if I ever "finished" all my quilts, I could then move on to x-stitch and use up YEARS of my life!
Jeanne :)
Still laughing ....

Vicky said...

I did some cross stitching, too, but I was a huge needlepoint fan! I only have one NP UFO. Amazing since I probably did over 100 projects, including the seats for my mother's dining room chairs! :)

Your story is interesting ... kudos for sticking with it!!

(((HUGS)))

Barb said...

I cruise so many blogs, I forget where I see things. I saw a cross-stitched tulips design on someone's blog the other day, and she matted in with a tulip paper (more like ink illustration) and then framed it. Beautiful. You could always combine your interest and do a quilt where the blocks are your cross-stitched items.

Barb said...

Oh, and as far as my background goes, I've always been a 'dabbler'. I started my first patchwork quilt as a senior in high school. Unfortunately, I used flannels, and it frayed so badly I never finished it. It's still in a bag in my closet! I made a lot of baby quilts as gifts, using a bath towel for the backing, and a washcloth for the matching pillow. I made one stuffy then haven't done that since. May try again. I tried jewelry design, but it was really difficult and way too expensive. I just signed up for another try in July. I can draw but hate it--never felt I had adequate instruction in school. I adore 3d sculpture, paper crafts, and paper mache. I have made cross-stitched dishtowel designs on gingham that I then sewed onto dishtowels. I made a few crocheted items, including dresses for my nieces when they were little, where the bodice was filet crochet hearts. I should post some pics of my early projects.

Laurie said...

Amy,
Great story...thanks for sharing!
Hugs
Laurie

Serena said...

Thanks for sharing your quilt beginnings, Amy! I have a few cross stitch projects started and some I will probably never get done! I've found so many other sewing ideas to do. Maybe I will get back to those someday...

Samantha said...

How wonderful that you were able to accomplish so much on your own!! I bet everyone has a few UFOs from their very first days- I don't even count mine...

Ann said...

Love these "how I began quilting" stories....it's interesting how differently we all fell into quilting...Funny how so many of our other interests fall into the background once we start quilting. For me it was x stitching and crocheting.

Hanne said...

x-stitching - hmmm - me too, and I have several kits to show for it, not done ;-)) Maybe I will take you up on the How I Began one day. Can you tell I am catching up on your blog today Amy ? :-P