Welcome to the Iron & Needle! I’m a member of the 2015 New Quilt Bloggers group and it’s my week to post for our blog hop. The blog hop has been great so far and I’m excited to share my blog with you.
All About Me
I’m an elementary French, Kindergarten and Phys. Ed. teacher in Ontario and I love my job. I also like sports, especially hockey, lacrosse and kayaking. I love to read and when commuting cut into my reading time I started listening to audiobooks. Now I’ve always got one on the go to sew with.
My Quilting Journey
I started quilting around the same time I started teaching, four years ago. I sewed a messenger bag out of a jacket my mom was finished with, then a ruched duvet cover out of three flat sheets. My mom had just joined a quilting class and suggested I join to learn some techniques. You know, pressing, pinning, rotary cutting- because apparently that’s how you’re supposed to do it. I thought quilting was for “old people” and declined. (Oh, was I wrong!) But the next fall I agreed to try and sewed my first quilt. I liked it, but still wasn’t sold on quilting and continued my own projects, until I came across some Lotta Jansdottor fabric on Etsy. I fell in love and drafted a design based on a baby quilt I had seen. Since then, I’ve gotten more and more into quilting!
|My plaid messenger bag, sewn from a blazer. The construction is poor but I'm still proud of the design.|
In quilting, I favour bright colours, solids and tone-on-tone prints. I love white backgrounds and negative space, so your eye has somewhere to rest in the background. I’m often drawn to quilts with non-traditional layouts, sometimes asymmetrical, but with balance. Below are some of my favourite quilts I’ve designed and sewn.
|Solids and prints, piecing and applique, cameras and film.|
|This top is headed off to the long-arm quilter soon for some custom quilting.|
|This one I quilted myself!|
Though I’m still relatively new to quilting, along the way, I’ve learned a lot about sewing and myself. One of those things is patience. A quilt seems to take a long time to finish at first, but I’ve gotten better at enjoying the process more. Another is how much fun it is to take a class and sew with a group of ladies, even when there’s a wide age difference. It doesn’t seem to matter. I’ve also discovered that my favourite part of quilting is the design process - gathering inspiration without even knowing it, with all these ideas floating around in your head. Then designing a layout, choosing fabrics and playing with colours. Then doing all of the math and breaking it down into all the little steps – how to piece it together, which steps to do first, how much fabric I need and what to cut. I spend a lot of time just visualizing how it’s all going to come together. I started keeping a sketchbook and binder with quilt designs, since my imagination seems to move faster than my sewing machine. I’ve found that once I’ve designed a quilt, I don’t always have the same urgency to make it, and that it’s okay to leave them there for later and maybe come back to it.
While I used to hate pinning and pressing, I’ve even come to find that relaxing lately. That’s where my blog name comes from. Though the design process is my favourite, most of my time is spent pressing, pinning and sewing – and so, the Iron & Needle.
Of course, the whole “leave the designs in the sketchbook” idea doesn’t always work and I’ve got a few projects on the go right now and couldn’t help myself. I’m sure more urgent ideas will pop up, so I’m trying to be flexible and not plan so much. I can’t wait to share the ones I’m working on later this summer.
How about you? What’s your favourite part of quilting? Was there a particular project that got you hooked? Would you like to share any lessons you’ve learned through quilting?
Thanks for visiting and please stop by the other blogs from my hive, Sewcial Swarm: