04 October, 2013

Why We Quilt... To Express Our Creative Selves


The quilts we make are outward expressions of our creative selves. Rarely do I make a quilt "by the pattern", if I use a pattern at all. Just like our life experiences, our location, and the time period in which we live define us; those same contributing factors define our quilts. This quilt, "All Are Precious...", is a perfect example of what I am talking about. The pattern is an old one from McCall's Quilting magazine, mid 1990's. It sparked my interest and I set it aside as a "someday" quilt to create. Finding the Cherrywood setting fabrics at a major quilt show years later determined the quilt's palette; a workshop taken at that same show by  Sue Nickels became the springboard for the border. I love the way all of these elements combined to become the whole. This quilt languished in the stash closet for years before the quilting was completed, more a reflection of my procrastinating self than my creative one! At long last it now proudly hangs in our bedroom hallway.
"WTLBFMFL" (Words To Live By From My Fabric Library) hangs in our guest room. Displaying a collection of personal quotations, penned (and quilted!) by hand, it was completed in 1997. It documents not only the fabrics that I had amassed at that time but also my interest in adding a hand applique border to rein it all in. This pattern appeared in the October 1993 publication of American Patchwork and Quilting magazine; the applique additions are my own. Our quilts are like snowflakes or fingerprints... no two are alike, once we become part of its making it becomes our own creative manifestation. We define the quilt, then, it defines us. 
It's why we quilt!
Life is Good!

14 comments:

quiltkeemosabe said...

Great thoughts on a quilter's motivation. Love this series of posts

julieQ said...

Love both quilts so much, and love that you expressing what so many of us feel, about why we do what we do! Carry on!! Love these posts!

45th Parallel Quilter said...

I agree with Quiltkeemosabe ... great series of posts. Both quilts are beautiful and thought provoking. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by all the UFOs and projects-in-the-planning/head I have ... I just need to tackle them one at a time ... day at a time ... instead of just looking at them and saying "I can't" or "Never will happen" .... Linda

Little Penpen said...

I would love to see more of the quotes quilt. Did you pen them all yourself? What a great idea.

Little Penpen said...

Oh,just saw the last pic! Just beautiful... absolutely beautiful. Perfect for a guest room.

Laura Davies said...

Are those quotes hand written? Gorgeous! Funny, I remember the little people pattern:) How did you get your blog name below the header? I couldn't figure it out on mine. Had to put it over the pics

straythreads said...

beautiful quilts and beautiful calligraphy. perfect for a guest room
Ann

Paula, the quilter said...

Seeing your quotes quilt reminded me of the one I made using exchanged signature blocks. I wimped out, though, and did not add a border of any kind. But then again, it is now the perfect size to cover the window in my basement sewing room. Just love your quilt.

jude's page said...

Love the second one with all those wise words!!!

Tanya said...

I absolutely love your Words To Live By quilt. Your guests probably stay up late just reading the quotes!

AnnieO said...

I've been enjoying your posting series! Being still at the stage where nearly every quilt I make flies out the door as a gift, I'm just hoping to amass such a collection of my OWN someday :). Quilts we want to keep mostly get finished last!

Carrie P. said...

I like to use a pattern as a springboard and then I usually make it into my "own"

cityquilter grace said...

beautiful quilts that are more than eye candy but soul candy as well...thanks for sharing!

LizA. said...

Lovely. We did a similar quilt for our pastor many years ago and all the members of the congregation signed it. It hanges in her office to this day. I like your idea with all the great quotes and what a perfect guest room quilt.