Emily at Mommy's Naptime blog is starting a Sew Thinky Thursdays linky and I thought it sounded fun, so I'm joining in! Every Thursday, she'll post a quilting related question to answer. (I know it's Friday, but I just found out about this today!) So, here we go with the first question...
When did you start sewing? Tell us a bit about your sewing history. When did you realize you were really hooked?
When I was little my grandmother and I were very crafty - we did everything from ceramics to candle making to decoupage. But NO sewing! She crocheted and she tried to teach me, but I have never gotten beyond double crochet (I chalk that up to her being right-handed and me being left-handed, but that's probably just a cop out.)
Anyway, fast forward to junior high school and my three months of sewing in Home Ec. My project was a dress. I still remember the fabric (and I may still have this thing stashed in the attic somewhere). It was a dark dusty pink linen-look something or other fabric. As I recall it never really got finished. That was it for the sewing for a while. I wasn't doing anyting crafty at that point either.
So, let's skip a few more years until I was in my early twenties. I think I was married but it was definitely B-K (before kids), so I'm thinking around 23 or 24 years old, my Mom (the most uncrafty person I know, but she has lots of other good qualities - loving everything I do being a major one o:) ) bought, opened and promptly packed up and sent me a cross stitch kit. I was intrigued but had no clue how this cross stitch thing worked. My job at the time had lots of downtime, so the other assistant in the office and I would sit during our long lunches and cross stitch (I convinced her she should do it too - LOL!) I liked cross stitch and, as is my nature, I needed to have all 356 (at the time) skeins of DMC floss (I remember with delight when that mail-ordered (way before on-line buying) bag of floss showed up on my doorstep!), lots of charts and magazines and weekly trips to the cross stitch store. We had a great cross stitch store in the area at that time - Peace of Thread. Sadly, I think it's closed down now. So, I cross stitched for a number of years, didn't finish much but I spent a lot of time doing it.
Obviously, this one needs a little cleaning!
Then came baby Ariel and I decided I wanted to sew clothes. So, I found a local seamstress who taught individual classes in her home and I recall hubby and baby driving me to my lessons every week. I also remember the lady always had coffee breath. I did about as well as I did in Jr. HS. I think I made a sundress for Ariel, which, being a toddler, she wore, even though it was really pretty bad (and I'm sure that's still up in the attic too). Well, the fabric was cute as I recall. So, that endeavor really didn't go anywhere.
Then in 1994 (I remember because i still have the first quilt magazine I ever bought), a friend at work brought in a quilt she had made. I was blown away (which was surprising because I remember looking at a quilt in a store window a few years before that and thinking "boy, I don't like quilts, they are boring" -which I find absolutely hysterical now!). I came home and announced I wanted to quilt and luckily, it was near Christmas time, so hubby bought me a $100 Singer from the local Woolworth's. I loved that machine. So, I set out to make a project from that first quilt magazine - a Christmas stocking. It's still in pieces in the box. But, I kept at it and worked at my dining room table and loved every minute of it. I think I was hooked from the very beginning of my quilting journey - I don't know why that "took" when I'd just dabbled in other crafts and then they all fizzled out.
Not long after I started, I wandered into my LQS at the time - Granny's Sewing Den - and met a lovely woman name Jo, who insisted I should join the small bee that met there on Thursday nights and that I really should come with them to the guild meetings once a month. Those ladies took me under their wing - and I was a good 10 years younger than they were and so far behind them in skill, but they never once made me feel like I wasn't good enough - and they taught me a lot of what I know. They are all fabulous quilters and every one of them is an amazing hand quilter. So, Jo, Bee, Julie, Nancy and Barb - you ladies rock!
I took my first quilting class at Granny's - the standard Sampler Quilt. It's still not finished - well, not quilted anyway - it's another hand quilting project (notice a theme here???)
Since then, I've taken many more classes, moved up from that Singer to a Bernina and a Juki TL98E and an HQ16 mid-arm machine. I've been doing this for almost 20 years now and I'm even more excited for the next 20!
Taken at a PMQG guild meeting a few months ago when I did a retrospective on my quilts - thanks for the photo, Becky!
Well, I don't think I was supposed to write a book, but there you have it - my sewing story! Check out Emily's linky post to read more stories!