March 12, 2010

Featuring Michelle -- A Blogger's Quilt Festival Quilter!

Happy Friday!  Today's featured blogger is Michelle from Dresden Quilter.  Michelle has been a faithful commenter and friend here, and I was so happy to see her name come up in the nominations.  I hope you enjoy getting to know Michelle ~

1. When did you begin quilting?
I first began quilting 17 years ago. I took a few classes, but did not have a sewing machine at the time. I realized that I was not very good at hand piecing and put quilting aside while I went back to school and started a career. I really got involved in quilting 10 years ago when I found out my sister was pregnant with her first child. I made a rainbow Trip Around The World for my nephew. Previous to that I had crocheted my other nephews and nieces blankets. Since that time, quilting has not been too far from my side.

2. Why do you quilt?
I quilt, because I cannot not quilt. Quilting is my passion. It is a way for me to show love to the people around me. I can think of nothing better to give than a quilt. I also using quilting, the same way a photographer takes pictures in an attempt to capture memories. When I make a quilt for someone else, I love to try to capture a piece of their soul by the fabric and pattern I choose. When I am making it for me, I use colours to remember favourite objects or memories, whether it be a flower or my wedding colours.

3. What is your favorite quilting tip?
A couple of years ago, I started making my husband a Double Irish Chain quilt. I was using Eleanor Burns’ Quilt in a Day book. In it, she suggested that you make the pieced blocks first, and then measure them before you cut out the larger block pieces. That way if you did not have a perfect ¼ inch seam, you could adjust the size of the other pieces and your seams would still match. It was as if a light bulb went off in my head. I realized that as long as I understood the math of the pattern I could change any pattern to suit my needs. I love math, by the way. That is how I made my QF quilt. I already had the strips cut out, which were smaller than the tutorial called for, but by adding in a few extra blocks and a border, I still ended up with a zigzag quilt.

4. What was your inspiration for your Quilt Festival quilt?
I love making baby quilts. I love the bold and bright colours. I was originally going to make a rail fence quilt but when I saw Amanda Jean’s tutorial for the zig zag quilt I knew that was what I was going to make. I had wanted to make a zig zag quilt for years and it was great to get to do it.

5. Do you sew other things?
I sew mostly quilts, and quilted related things such as pincushions, wall hangings, potholders, tote bags and table runners. I have sewn some clothes in the past but I have so many quilting projects planned that I do not know when I will manage to do much else. I also crochet, knit and cross-stitch.

6. Anything else you would like us to know about you?
The thing I get most often by people is how do you find time to quilt? I work full-time and have 2 young children. I will admit to some early mornings, and some late evenings to get things done. I do have a dedicated sewing room, and even a few minutes a day will eventually get the quilt done. My children do know they come first and quilting can be dropped at any moment for them, but I also think that it is good that they see me doing something I love to do. Another time saver for me has been having my quilts quilted by someone else. I also have participated in a lot of swaps over the past year. I find working on the smaller projects has really helped me stretch and grow as a quilter. Those smaller projects I have quilted myself, and I hope to be able to make more time to start quilting some of mine own quilts. I also belong to my local quilt guild and have learned a lot from the quilters there. I want to thank all of you for being such an inspiration to me. I have met so many amazing quilters online. Lastly, whenever I go out whether it be to a restaurant or museum if I see a pattern, I immediately try to figure out whether it can be made into a quilt! 

I do the same thing Michelle!  My most recent sketch, is a wall that I saw on TV - I can't wait to make it!

I hope you all have a great weekend~
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Andrea said...

Yay Michelle! She's such an amazing blog friend and supporter and always has her plate full of great projects.

Anonymous said...

Great interview... Quilting is a ministry for me (of sorts), too. A lot of thought and prayer go into my gifts...

Love your zig zag quilt, Michelle!

Cheryl Arkison said...

Many moons ago I heard Mary Ellen Hopkins speak and she gave the sam tip as Eleanor Burns. it is revolutionary!
Thanks for the interview.

Sandie @ crazy'boutquilts said...

Great interview! Michelle does beautiful work! I love visiting her blog. :-)

Mandy Noble said...

Great interview! I was the lucky recipient of the pot holders Michelle has shown on the Pot Holder Pass - thank you again!

Carol Sanin said...

Great interview. I agree with you there is nothing better then to give your love ones a quilt. I've made a quilt for very one of my nephews and nieces all 10 of them:)

Elizabeth said...

Michelle, your quilts are lovely. My favorite were the very colorful potholders! Thanks for sharing a bit about yourself!

Live a Colorful Life said...

This interview idea was great. Thanks again for introducing us to new quiting friends.

audreypawdrey said...

I am really enjoying these interviews, Amy. I love the zig zag quilt that Michelle made!

Allie said...

Great interview!!! I really love that you're doing this, I learn so much from other quilters. I can't wait to see your quilt based on that wall, I do that too, lol!

Jane's Fabrics and Quilts said...

Thanks my girl!!!!

Ariane said...

I love to learn more about you, Michelle! You inspire all of us with wonderful projects!!! Your quilts are beautiful.

Vicki said...

Love the zig zag quilt--I've got to make one some time!

Melanie@Crafty Cupboard said...

That zig-zag is so fun. I love it!