Who are you, and what do you do for a living?
I’m Kristin, and I’m a freelance editor and writer. I do everything from educational publishing to writing catalog copy. I love working from home, and it’s great that I’m able to be with my two-month-old little boy all day. I think.
When did you first start sewing or quilting? How did you learn?
I had a really cheap White when I was in college. I wanted to sew garments, but that totally didn’t work out. I made myself a t-shirt quilt from directions on the Internet during my sophomore year, and then took a quilting class soon after. I have yet to complete the quilt from class.
What is your favorite part of quilting, or favorite type of work to do? (handwork, machine quilting, designing, etc.)
I really do enjoy all parts of quilting, except the pressing. I’m not very good with the iron (my husband does all the ironing in our house), and even when I press my seams really well, they tend to go wherever they please. My favorite thing is probably fusible applique. I made an awesome wall hanging for my mom a few years ago, and it was the first time I ever felt like an artist.
What do you consider to be your quilting “style”?
I tend to gravitate towards bold colors and shapes, especially solid fabrics. I like quilt tops to be extreme – if there are rectangles, I want the entire quilt to reflect the idea of rectangles. I like patterns that benefit from color play. I think I would get bored using just one or two colors.
How would you define “Modern Quilting”?
I don’t really subscribe to the idea of “modern quilting.” I think there are modern quilters, and we quilt the way we are most comfortable. It’s okay if we don’t have extended training and do things our own way. A modern quilter is someone who might make a stunning improvised quilt with the latest fabrics, and then follow it up with a traditional quilt in reproduction fabrics. And, really, she doesn’t care if anybody else likes it or not.
What is the thing you’ve made that you’re most proud of?
I am ridiculously proud of my No Prints Allowed Challenge quilt. It was the first time I put a quilt pattern to paper and actually executed it. I picked a color palette that I wouldn’t normally choose and then let the colors dictate what I designed. (I use the term “designed” loosely. My drawing skills rival those of an excited beaver.) Seeing it come to life was incredible, especially since I initially had no idea how to construct the thing. It’s on our living room couch and we use it every day. I’ve been known to shout, “LOOK WHAT I MADE!” every time somebody new comes to our house.
I’m also super proud of the quilt I made for my parents two Christmases ago. I had some insane idea to make them a quilt reflecting their hobbies – my mom is a Master Gardener, and my dad was supervising his first Habitat for Humanity house. I came up with the idea in the summer; I didn’t start it until December 5 or something. I drew and then embroidered my mom’s favorite flowers (complete with their Latin names), and free-pieces the houses. I was quilting until 3 a.m. the morning we left for Iowa. The quilting isn’t pretty – tons of puckers and who knows what else – but I had so much fun making it and they really, really love it.
What is the thing you have made that you are most embarrassed by?
Our wedding quilt. It’s a Denyse Schmidt pattern, and I started it the summer before we got married. It’s essentially a wonky log cabin, and she has you cut out zillions of templates to make the wonkiness. I’ve completed two out of three sets of blocks, and the idea of cutting more templates makes me want to kick someone. Also, I’m not sure how it’s going to look when I’m done. The front is two different oranges, and the back is hot pink (our wedding colors. They were much better than I’m making it sound.), and I’m really afraid it’s going to be totally ugly and I’ll be disappointed and mad at myself for not making better decisions.
We’ll be married five years this week.
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned from quilting?
DO NOT BE AFRAID. Sewing is honestly my most nerve-wracking hobby. I have no fear about ripping out inches and inches of knitting, and I’ll gladly take apart a crocheted blanket if I make a mistake. The thought that I can’t uncut fabric makes starting a new project absolutely terrifying. But that makes finishing a quilt absolutely thrilling.
Finish this phrase … Quilting makes me feel…
Dizzy with anticipation. Also very, very tired.
Thank you Kristin! I think many of us share your fear of not being able to uncut fabric! We can’t wait to see your future finished quilts!!