Friday, July 10, 2009

My First Quilt

Camille at Simplify and Carrie at La Vie en Rosie are hosting a virtual Parade of Quilts--first quilt and last quilt. I thought it would be fun to play along.

Here is my first quilt. I took a quilting class sponsored by our local parks & recreation department. The woman who taught it was a long-time quilter who instead of having everyone work on the same thing just encouraged us to start a project and work on it during our class time.

This was in the days before rotary cutters, so all the pieces were carefully cut out using cardboard templates and rather dull scissors. (I was such a newbie that I didn't even realize that scissors needed to be sharpened periodically!) Fabric choices were extremely limited in those days, especially for 100% cotton.

We had the class in the middle school home ec room and we were allowed to use the school's sewing machines, but I got so frustrated with them that I ended up just hand sewing everything together. I finished the top and began quilting it. I even made my own quilting templates and carefully traced the design on the navy blue fabric with a bit of chalk. And then...well, lots of stuff happened. My project ended up in a bag which got buried in the back of my closet.

Years later I found it one day, took it out of the bag, and said what I always say when I go back to an unfinished project--"Hey this thing is almost done!" I finished quilting it and it sits on the back of my couch for a few months each year. You can see the fold lines; I need to fluff it up in the dryer and refold it.

If you DO have to cut out fabric with templates for some project, get a good stiff board and glue finishing sandpaper to it. That will help hold the fabric in place while you trace around it. Use a very soft pencil with a thin lead and drag it around the template gently.

This is my latest finish, which I've blogged about before. This one would not be possible without the use of a rotary cutter.

I think we quilters should find the inventor of the rotary cutter and set a aside a day each year for an international day of celebration to honor that person. International Rotary Cutting Day! Have parades! Invent a new dessert! Take a day off from work to quilt! What do you think?


Lynn said...

Hear, hear, let there be an International Rotary Cutting Day!

Janet said...

I have spent most of the day going through the Parade. I enjoyed your site and your quilts are outstanding. I'm retired teacher and my husband still consults for special education on the state and national level. Stop by if you are in the mood.

heather said...

I'll sign up to celebrate rotary cutter day!

Katie B said...

Your latest quilt is just gorgeous. (And thanks for the reminder to get my scissors sharpened!)

dutchcomfort said...

A Rotary Cutter Day sounds great! The quilt in the quilting hoop looks lovely!