Monday, May 16, 2011

Quilting Roots

Storm at Sea made by my Mom before rotary cutting!
 I grew up with a quilting mother, but as I have become more immersed in the world of quilting I realize how unique she is. She makes one quilt a year--machine pieced and hand quilted. She usually finds a pattern she likes and replicates it as nearly as possible. She doesn't save the scraps. She has a small fabric stash, but buys new for much of each quilt. She joined a guild briefly, but was happier doing her own thing on her own time. She has never taken a quilt class or gone to a quilt retreat. She has won sweepstakes at our county fair multiple times and one of her two entries at the state fair level netted her the sweepstakes there. That quilt went on to Houston--you know, the big quilt thing they do there. ; )

Mom's stitches are tiny and she taught me to hand quilt by leaving the knot off of my thread as I learned. When my stitches were finally small and even enough to be in her quilt she let me knot my thread. As I would help my Mom with her quilting I thought it was a tedious thing and I always swore I would never be a quilter. Since I have been quilting almost 25 years, I ate those words a long time ago!

Recently, as I have pondered the possibility of a quilt blog and what I would call it, the name "rogue quilter" came to mind. I apply the term in the sense of "one who behaves in an unpredictable way." I have never been a guild member and I've never been to a quilt retreat. I have never made a quilt from a kit and I have never made a quilt exactly as the pattern instructs. I have never purchased a jelly roll or charm squares. I've never attended a major quilt show or fest and I don't have a group of quilting friends. As I see the quilters around me doing all the things I've never done, I feel somewhat out of the loop. However, I am very traditional in my quilt style, so there is nothing rogue about my quilts. I am definitely a scrap quilter, though I occasionally step outside those boundaries and do something different.

It has only been the last few months that I have even followed any quilt blogs and I have Bonnie Hunter to thank for that. Upon purchasing her "Adventures with Leaders and Enders" (Feb. 2011) I was so interested in her methods that I looked up her website and started following her blog. That led me to read others that she followed and they led me to others, etc., etc., etc. I decided to start this blog primarily as a quilting journal, so it may just be for my own benefit, but if anyone else stumbles across it and takes the time to read, Welcome.
My first leader/ender project!
I absolutely love Bonnie's "leader/ender" way of quilting between the lines. The photo above shows  my latest project (which was my first leader/ender quilt) to go off to the longarm quilter. This double four-patch was a joint effort between my daughter and myself to gift to a neighbor of hers. I used the leftovers, along with inspiration from Sharyn Craig's book "Great Sets" to make the lap quilt below.
 After working to modify the x-block to get the desired result I realized I could have achieved the same thing with the hatchet block. Chalk it up to experience! 

I've rambled enough for now. More to come--there are plenty of projects in the works.
'Til next time, from the little mountain valley where the sagebrush grows, 

Janet O.


  1. I am your first follower and the first to comment! How cool is that?

    Love the Storm at Sea. I have to work on several projects at the same time. I have to admire your Mother for finishing her work!

  2. Dear Janet - I am so glad you decided to be a blogger! Wow, your, your Mom's quilts are delicious! Already you have been followed (above) by a wonderful quilter, Subee, who makes really great quilts. And you found Bonnie Hunter -- you are on a roll!

  3. I adore your leader and ender quilt. I am making a quilt from that book right now. I also just got her newest book, scraps & shirttales. Now I want to hunt in everyone's closet for old shirts to cut up.

  4. I just saw this up in your TABS. Glad you have eaten those words and have so many new Quilting adventures under your belt. Lucky you to have your mom to show you the way. I'm so gad you led me to Bonnie Hunter too. Have you bought a pre-cut yet?


I love to have your comments and feedback.