Well, basketball season is in full swing (shameless plug – if you want one of those purple/white fleece scarves, they are for sale at the NB boys basketball home games for $10.00/each…..) and the cheerleaders are getting ready for their first competition February 9 (all competition dates are on the Patch calendar and in the Announcements). Whew! So I am finding time to quilt.
I got a response to one of my earlier blogs from a very nice lady – she has quilting tools and magazines galore but only made one quilt 10 years ago and is now wondering what will happen to all her stuff when she passes on. She still dreams of quilting but figures she is too elderly.
SO…after I wiped the drool off my chin and yelled at myself for even THINKING about taking all these things off her hands, I decided to give all you wannabee quilters out there, regardless of age, a reality check.
I don’t want you to give away your stuff. I want you to STOP dreaming and start quilting! Many quilters in our virtual community (http://www.quiltingboard.com) are well into their 70s and 80s and some in fact have parents that are still quilting! My own mother is 78 and still going strong.
You do NOT need to be an expert on piecing. Some of the prettiest quilts I have seen have 3 colors and are all squares. Your seams also do not need to be exactly a ¼ inch as long as you are CONSISTENT. Stack two squares together. Put the right edge of your pressure foot against the raw edge of the square. Sew. Repeat.
You do NOT need to be a color expert. Have you ever arranged flowers in a vase? Pick one focal color and go from there. If you are color challenged, then use black and whites. If you want to pull in a third color, red, blue or green go with everything.
You do NOT need to have a fancy sewing machine. Yes, all those lovely design are done by people with long arm machines, but great results can be had by simply sewing lines across your quilt. Can’t sew those? Then tie the quilt every 2-4 inches. The purpose of quilting is to stop the batting from shifting. Mission accomplished.
Still afraid? Don’t make a full quilt – go buy an inexpensive comforter. Measure its length and width. Piece your quilt top and back it with muslin or even a sheet, sewing the front and back on three sides like a big pillowcase. Slip over the comforter and add buttons or ties at the top to keep the comforter from escaping.
All that fancy piecing is nothing more than squares and rectangles. Can you cut a rectangle? Great. There is a pattern called Chinese Coins that is nothing more than a bunch of rectangles sewn together. 4 squares in two colors form a 4 Patch. Cut 5 squares of one color and 4 squares of another color and you have a 9 Patch. See how easy?
Really you don’t even need a sewing machine. If you cut out your squares and measure ¼ inch from the raw edge and draw a line, you can hand sew them together. I pieced an entire quilt called Celtic Illusions that way. Why? I needed a hand project so I could sit in the living room with my husband while he watched NCIS.
Now I really will be very glad to take all your fabric, all your magazines and all your tools off your hands – but I would much rather see you use those items and create one of kind gifts for people you love or for your favorite charity, rather than give them to me.
So go out there and GET QUILTING!!! :)