10/9/08

Martha Stewart I am not!

But when I first got here nearly three years ago, knowing very few people, I decided to join a hand-quilting group to help make friends. Quilting is extremely popular in this area, one of the local schools even has it on the curriculum for boys and girls.

This led me to eventually take a quilt making course and the end result a few months later was this sampler lap quilt. For me this was a truly remarkable achievement, up until this point I had never mastered a sewing machine and chose to sew any repairs by hand as a result!

I found the process of piecing the quilt extremely challenging, especially the 1/4 inch seams everywhere, a few of mine were not that exact! I loved getting to select my colours and fabrics, then deciding which blocks to attempt, each week increasing how difficult they were.

My favourite and the most difficult of the blocks, was the Jacobs Ladder above. It may have caused me a few headaches but the end result made it all worthwhile. I learned how to bind it and even did the mitred corners, which is something many quilters leave to others. But I had an excellent teacher and she insisted we did it all ourselves, for which I am grateful.

The ladies in the group who taught me hand-quilting, actually hand-quilted this for me. I wanted them do it for two reasons; it would have taken me months and it made my first quilt more special, knowing my new friends all had a some stitches on it.

The satisfaction I felt at the end and pure astonishment that I had actually made this thing of beauty, are still with me today when I look at it. I have not had the time to piece another quilt since, but I have the fabric and may well take the time over the winter to make another.

The hubster, appreciating what a huge achievement this was for a former career girl who had no clue about sewing, gave me this quilt stand for my next birthday.

Just writing this piece has made me want to go and drag out all the quilting fabric I have and start work on another - be warned, quilt making's addictive!

12 comments:

Melissa said...

Sarah, I tried my hand at quilting as well. I live in Amish country so it seems second nature around here. But I was never able to master the sewing machine. I found it very frustrating. I also hated cutting fabric. I could not cut a straight line to save me life. It goes against my nature to 'color inside the lines' so to speak. So I've stuck to knitting I'm afraid. I love what you've done and I'm really impressed. Its hard to appreciate the work it takes unless you've actually attempted it.

willow said...

My mother in law used quilt and made dozens of them. I never attempted it though. Nice work! The reverse side is just as lovely!

Linda said...

Beautiful! My mom, grandmother and aunts hand quilted, and I envied their patience and ability, but thus far, have not developed an interest in trying. I am very impressed with your beautiful quilt!!!

Expat mum said...

Mitred corners eh? Well impressed. I can sew but am never able to get the pieces properly lined up and being a (wound up) Virgo, that's just not acceptable. What I have found joy in is crazy quilts - because they are deliberatly all over the place. Nice work.

Janet said...

That's beautiful, Sarah. Good job!

Rob (Inukshuk Adventure) said...

Lovely quilt. I know the work involved, my Mum used to quilt. She made loads of them. The living room floor was so often covered in layouts as she planned the next one.

Winifred said...

What a lovely quilt, very royal that purple colour!

I've only done hand quilting on small things like cushions and little velvet waistcocats for my daughter when she was little. So this is a big project, a huge amount of work. Well done!

Oh! Showing my ignorance as a foreigner here but who is Martha Stewart? I did a search but all I got was a website with recipes, craft stuff etc. I thought it might have been some fantastic historical pioneer type woman famous for her quilts. Is it a real person?

Bella Foxx said...

Very beautiful quilt. I have quilted small things, but I think I will stick to knitting too. Besides that I have no place to set up my sewing machine.

Roland Hulme said...

What a BEAUTIFUL quilt.

My mother does patchworking. It's an awesome hobby.

Sandy said...

What a beautiful quilt!
I have always wanted to learn but sewing and I just don't seem to get along.

gingela5 said...

Wow, beautiful quilt! I was just talking about quilting with some people the other day! I have no clue how to do it and I don't see myself ever learning!

Sherri said...

Sarah, I have hand quilted quite a few quilts over the years and I have to say you did a wonderful job on yours!! Keep up the good work!! Quilting is addictive as you said.