19 October 2007

The Quilting Queen

Yesterday I had my very first quilting class. I’ve always wanted to learn quilting, so this is my kick in the pants motivational tactic. Makes sense, if I purchase an actual classroom experience, then I am forced to put up or shut up, right? I think so. And I would have asked my mother-in-law or grandma-in-law to teach me (who are amazing quilters), but they live ages away. Alas!

Sunday afternoon, I went in to get my materials for the project at the only fabric store worth visiting in a thirty mile radius. It’s a “quilt your own project” class instead of a “beginners quilting” class (because the teach said as long as I can stitch straight, she’d let me in), so basically I’m not real sure of what all I need for it and what I’m even doing. I got myself a real SIMPLE pattern called “Turning Twenty” or something bizarre like that and started gathering my materials. The crazy thing about this pattern though is that I have to get twenty different pieces (or “fat quarters” which just sounds gross) for it. Do you know what a daunting task it is to find twenty coordinating fabrics that you wouldn’t be embarrassed to have all put together that you could put somewhere in your house?!? Because, at this point, with the class and the book and the fabric, this is gonna be one expensive quilt! It will have to have a place of honor. So I picked out about five different browns, tans, and deep reds and thought I did good (I planned on using the same material at least twice each).

I got to class early Thursday to make sure I got at least half the things I needed, hoping that the teach would be there to chat with me. She, of course, didn’t think I had enough fabric versatility and took it upon herself to help me choose more. Forty-five dollars and a few more gray hairs later, I was all set up with some crazy oranges and greens and funky patterned reds to add to my fabric collage. And believe me, I used my veto power as much as I could here. At one point, my instructor looked at me (as I eyed one of her selections in utter horror) and said “The first lesson you are going to learn tonight is a free one. It is not the quilter who picks the fabric for her quilt, it’s the quilt itself.” Ah yeah. I don’t know if she really believes that existential bologna or if she was just pissed at me or what, but I sure thought it was blog worthy.

Anyway, I survived the class. I’ve got a whole lot of cutting to do for my “Turning Twenty” before my next visit with the quilting dojo. But I have a few of her wisdom gems she enlightened us all with to hold me. This one I’ll share: I asked her what color thread I should use to piece my quilt together. Thinking of my array of colors, I thought maybe a brown or a red. Unfortunately, I voiced my idea and she looked at me like I had just slapped her child. She said “In quilting, there are only 2 kinds of thread: gray and beige.” Dissed and dismissed.


Christie said...

You go girl! What a great endeavor! That's pretty dang funny. I can't wait to see the progress. Do you have a rotary cutter and mat set?

Jennifer said...

You are a brave woman...I can't imagine taking on a project that big! Enjoy your class, and keep us updated...maybe I can learn from you! :)

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