One craft I have always, always wanted to learn to do is quilting. Maybe because I grew up reading Anne of Green Gables and Little Women, but I have always been drawn to the crafts of the 1800s. When I was little I sewed little dolls stuffed with kidney beans or clothes for toys, but all by hand. I didn’t come from a crafty family, so I mostly experimented by cutting up my old clothes or raiding the church’s scrap closet. And over the years, I stuck mostly to cross-stitching or knitting as my craft of choice.
But recently a fabric store opened in our town, and I was immediately excited by the tagline “Quilting Classes Offered.” This was in May 2010, when I had just been diagnosed with thyroid cancer, had scheduled my surgery, and was noticing symptoms of my as-yet-undiagnosed Crohn’s disease. I was still feeling draggy and dispirited, although looking forward to summer break. The chance to venture into quilting excited me immensely. I had given up on exercising during the ups and downs of my thyroid saga, often too exhausted to do anything but fall asleep on the couch at 7 PM day after day. But an indoor activity that exercised the hands and mind? Right up my alley!
I went to Fabriholics and signed up for a class to make a “Turning Twenty Again” queen-size quilt. I am still a total novice, although I can now claim to have one quilt-top to my name. But I am excited!
I love fabrics and love piecing. The cutting and measuring, however, are a different story… but practice makes perfect, right? I don’t aim for perfection, but I’m having fun getting closer.
Among the skills I have yet to master:
- Cutting with a rotary cutter
- Measuring accurately
- Calculating yardage for patterns
- Cutting on a bias
- Remembering every step