A professional longarm machine quilter for hire and some of the work I've done.
This is today’s finished quilt. A baby quilt.
I took time to cut out pieces for my SIL’s next quilt. It’s easier and faster for me to just pick out the fabric from my stash and do the cutting than to try explaining the concept of “scrap” quilt or “color vs theme” to her. I do try explaining….. but it’s not clicking yet. I’ll keep explaining it until it does click.
My SIL baffles and confuses me! I’ve not quite figured her out yet in spite of knowing her for 41+ years. She’s been married to my brother for 41 years.
A few years ago she would buy a few yards of fabric, bring it to me a couple of weeks before Christmas and ask me to create a quilt for her to give as a gift. I had to show her somehow that two weeks before Christmas was unrealistic for creating a quilt. Especially during the rush! So I started teaching her to make quilts for herself. Me creating a quilt as a gift was a gift from me, not her.
My SIL comes to my house once a week to work on her quilts. She’s been coming over for about 5 years now and still shows little interest beyond what she is currently working on at the moment. This is what baffles and confuses me.
Most people when they become quilters will at least look at quilt books or magazines for new ideas. Especially when a new magazine arrives in the mail. For me, as soon as a new one arrives I can hardly wait to sit down and look through the magazine. I offer it to her to look through but she barely glances at it. Quilt books and magazines don’t interest her. She only looks at books or magazines at my house when she plans to make another gift for someone in her family. She looks for quilt patterns that will best show off the theme fabrics rather than be a creatively pieced quilt. She has yet to buy the first magazine or book for herself or even ask me if she can borrow some of mine.
Most new quilters will have a fascination with fabrics. New quilters want to visit fabric stores to see all the pretty fabrics. She only visits a fabric store to look for a theme fabric to fit a specific person she wants to make a quilt for. Other fabrics don’t interest her at all. She walks right past any that don’t have the right theme. I’ve often given her the opportunity to take some of the donated fabrics given to me. She doesn’t want any of it unless it happens to be the right theme and is yardage. Scraps are left untouched.
Most new quilters want to go to quilt shows to see what other quilters have created. I get very excited at the prospect of going to Paducah or Nashville or even visiting the fair just to see the quilts. She only goes to get away from home. It’s the trip itself that holds her fascination not the prospect of seeing quilts.
So….. is she a quilter or only making quilts because I don’t have the time to make her gifts for her? I do like my SIL and really like hanging around with her. I would just once like to see the sparkle in her eye at seeing a fantastic new quilt design instead of her only seeing the theme fabric. Just once I want to see her excited by a design and want to make one for herself instead of choosing a theme fabric and asking me how to make it into a quilt.
My studio is calling me….