Sunshine Quilts

Friday, June 09, 2006

The Quilting Journey

I love sharing pictures of my quilts and talking about my quilting but I sometimes think it can be a little intimidating to new quilters or to those who have less free time for quilting. So, here's the "rest of the story" to help put it all in perspective. The quilt shown above is my very first quilt. I obviously started quilting in the early 80's. It is all pieced and quilted by hand. How else would a good quilter make a quilt? I started a few others but can't remember another one that was totally hand pieced and hand quiltd. At some time during the late 80's and early 90's, quilting took a back seat to smocking and French handsewing (by machine) but as you can see, I went back to quilting. The discovery of machine piecing changed everything and that's when my *real* quilting began. I was working part-time and Chad was young (and wild!) so my quilting time was pretty limited. I hand quilted a few tops, mom hand quilted one or two and I had some of them quilted by a longarmer. In 1997 we moved to Kentucky and I no longer worked outside the home. We bought a house that had several acres, with woods and a shallow pond nearby, and no neighbors. Chad was in 4th grade and when he wasn't at school, he was outside playing hard! I suddenly had lots and lots of time for quilting and the tops began piling up. I wasn't able to find a longarmer here who would do the type quilting I wanted and that's how I ended up buying my own longarm. As I mentioned in a previous post, mom counted 90 quilts here. I have gone back and tried to list the quilts I've made. I know I'm not remembering all of them and wish I had kept better records but in addition to the 90 that are here, I have listed 55 that I have given away so that means I've made at least 145 quilts, with most of those having been made in the last 8 - 10 years. You may be wondering how I have time to make so many quilts. It's all I do! Today is a good example. Chad left at 7:30 for work and will be home at 5:00. Vince is out of town. Other than doing a few household chores, I will quilt all day. I won't leave home, I won't see anyone else . . I will spend the entire day quilting. Chad probably has plans for the evening so I will quilt all evening and half the night. I won't leave home, I won't see anyone else . . I will spend most of the night quilting. That's how most of my days/nights go. I am very thankful for my quilting obsession. One day things may be different. We may live where we have family closer, or where we've made friends and I'll have less time for quilting but for now . . quilting keeps me sane. Judy L.


  • Blogger lost my first comment, so I'll try again.
    Don't forget Speck! Aren't you glad you have quilting?!? It's amazing how much company it can me. I've read stories, years ago, quilting was all the company women had. The quilt you have picture is my kind of quilt. I can picture babies being kept warm by it. Hang in there, maybe you'll get to move closer to family (I'm from Louisiana too). But in the mean time, you've got internet friends...

    By Blogger Screen Door, at 6/09/2006 07:18:00 AM  

  • We love looking at all your quilts! Sometimes folks ask me how I get so much done and I say "I don't have kids and only get one channel on TV!"

    By Blogger Laurie Ann, at 6/09/2006 10:39:00 AM  

  • Like you I have been quilting for many years (mid 80's) and my first quilt does not look half as good as yours. If memory serves me right I did not even finish it. It was a Log Cabin table cloth without batting - teacher's choice.
    I did not like to work without batting - not then, not now.
    Oh - I have been the worst blogger lately, and when I have had the time to comment I could not access the comment option. Blogger has not been friendly with me.
    So - I am doing catch up for June.
    You are making wonderful quilts and I wish you all the best of luck with your EQ entries. I am holding my thumbs for you :-)
    I am looking forward to see your bright star quilt. What I have seen so far looks good.
    One can never have to much fun with quilting, whatever level one is on :-)
    I am not a garden person either - nor a very good housekeeper. It is clean enough to be healthy, but that is about it ;-)

    By Blogger Hanne, at 6/09/2006 11:28:00 AM  

  • Love your first quilt - it is so 80's! You can spot them right off!

    By Blogger Dawn, at 6/09/2006 12:17:00 PM  

  • Thank you so much for this post. Sometimes I see how productive other people are and feel like I'm slacking somehow, but with 4 little kids there's just not much time left in the day for quilting. It helps to know that the productive quilters have had slow times too.

    By Blogger Shellie, at 6/14/2006 08:19:00 AM  

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