Recently, I shared my first quilt at the Triangle Modern Quilt Guild meeting. And, it occurred to me that I never shared that quilt here. I basically taught myself how to quilt, and I'm pretty proud of that. But, I have to credit my Mom for planting the seed. She convinced me a few years ago that we could sew a quilt top for my sister, when she had cancer. I barely knew how to sew, but she cut all the fabric, gave me the pattern, and explained to me how to piece it all together. We did it - we made the top and a friend of my Mom's quilted it for us. It was a lap size attic windows quilt using some large-scale chicken prints (my sister lives on a farm). We gave it to her when she was through with treatment and cancer free!
Somewhere in the midst of piecing that top, I needed a little help (and maybe some inspiration), so I went to the web, and stumbled across some modern quilt blogs. That was it for me. I knew I wanted to make my own quilts.
It took a couple of years to pull off my own first quilt, though. I started this quilt a little over a year ago, cutting the fabric while I was waiting to buy a new sewing machine - one that I could make quilts with (go figure...). I finished this quilt in May. It took me a loooong time to put it together, partly because I had a million little things I wanted to make once I got my new machine and partly because I just couldn't get the nerve up to start doing it. I'm so glad that I did it! I I love, love, love this quilt!
It is FAR from perfect. There are plenty of points that don't line up, the quilting stitches are way irregular, and then there are these little jagged spots in the quilting where I started and stopped the free motion quilting. I specifically wanted a larger meandering pattern as opposed to dense stippling on this quilt. And, I thought it would be easier for me, since I wouldn't have to move around as much. Yeah, not so much. It was still pretty tough.
I'm on my third quilt now and quilting continues to challenge me. I think that's a big part of why I like it though. I also love the way a quilt brightens and changes an entire room, just sitting on a couch or a chair with all of its imperfections. And, then there's the sentiment behind quilts. I recently went to my sister's house and saw the quilt we made hanging on her wall above her couch. Either she really, really loves giant chickens on her wall or she finds comfort in the sentiment behind this quilt. Or perhaps both.