What started you quilting?
I was inspired by a former daughter-in-law’s mother, and the quilts that I saw that I fell in love with, but couldn’t possibly afford to buy.
One woman I met started quilting because she wanted to keep sewing when she and her husband started RV traveling, and there just wasn’t enough room in an RV for cutting clothing (I find that amazing, considering how much room I seem to need for quilting – just for storing all the ‘stuff’).
In days gone by quilts were made of necessity – for warmth. And of course the quilts that were hung on the Underground Railroad to signify safe haven for runaway slaves.
I’m sure everybody has a different story – here’s a poem I ran across several years ago (once again, I don’t know the author, and hope I’m not treading on any copyright feet):
One day when I was home alone, I turned on the TV,
The lady who was on the show was speaking just to me.
She was a quilt instructor, I remember not her name,
But I could tell she knew me well, despite her TV fame.
Within those 30 minutes she performed a feat of magic,
The end result of all of this is really just quite tragic.
She made a block with ease and style in just those 30 minutes.
“I can do that,” I exclaimed, ‘she shows there’s nothing in it.”
And so I taped that quilting show, and many, many more,
Then took myself with list in hand off to the fabric store.
I bought the right equipment, and some fabric just to start,
And couldn’t believe how much they cost – it nearly broke my heart,
Then settled down with all my stuff in front of the TV –
Machine all primed, I turned it on and followed along you see.
The block she made in record time was not the way it went.
Pause, stop, rewind and play until the day was spent.
At last I had a block made – it only took four hours,
And I think that quilt instructor must have had some magic powers.
For I was hooked – I couldn’t stop, I cut and sewed and squared.
My house became a shambles, I taped each show that aired.
I signed up for a class or two, and had to buy more stuff,
Then realized a real quilter never has enough.
A quiltaholic I became – I had to have it all,
And when I pass a fabric store I hear this plaintive call?
“Buy me, take me,” I hear this cry, “You really need some blue,
And red and white and shades of green, black and yellow too.”
And rulers, mats of every size, just call to me and say:
“You can have us all, you know, you only have to pay.
And all the books and magazines, tape and sticky glue,
Rotary cutters, safety pins, and anything that’s new.
That show I saw was years ago – you’d think the urge would pass.
I really didn’t realize this stuff was made to last.
So I’ve got mats of every size, and of course a new machine,
And the largest stash of fabric that you have ever seen.
I’ve got fabric folded on my shelves, and fabric on the floor,
Rubber maid containers for the scraps, and then some more
Fabric in my bedroom (the sewing room is full),
And fabric on my linen shelves, right next to all my wool.
If I could live three life-times, I’ll maybe need no more,
But still you’ll find me rushing out to another fabric store.
The magic that she did on me, the lady on TV
Doesn’t wear off, and doesn’t pass – you quilters will agree.
And so I sit, my house a mess – no social life have I,
For making quilts is like a drug, I really don’t know why.
Withdrawal symptoms I have now if I have to go away
And leave my precious stuff at home alone more than a day.
Sometimes I stop and think that when all is said and done,
I really am so lucky to work with so much fun.
The clubs I’ve joined, the friends I’ve made are such a joy to me
And all because a quilt instructor was “speaking just o me”.
The tragic part to all of this is really kind of funny,
For while I’m quilt equipment rich, it’s taken all my money.
Happy quilting! Blessings, Peg