Monday, October 05, 2009

I'm going to the County Fair!


I am so happy to be a part of Kat's County Fair over at "Art's Chili". It all started on September 14th and ends on October 7th.

Kat has found so much creativity in the blog world and the idea was given to her by Kat at Heart to Heart to have a virtual county fair. She asks that you take pictures of your entry. It can be anything from canning to cooking, sewing to gardening. Come one, come all! She'll have candle apples and prizes, too! It sounded like fun to me, so here is what I've got.

But before I reveal my first entry, I wanted to share this story with you.

Right after we had our firstborn, Austin, I decided to take a quilting class. I had known for a long time that quilting was something I would love to learn how to do. I met a friend by the name of Nora that has a true passion for the art of quilting and I picked her brain on it from time to time as we worked together.

She blessed us with a handmade quilt when Austin came into this world back in 1996. I was amazed at her generosity. It wasn't long after I had received it that I took my first and only quilting class back in Pittsburgh, PA. It was a six week long class and I learned everything I needed to know to produce this...

My only problem was that I didn't have a lot of time to devote to my quilt which meant it was put away for a very long time. I finally finished it by the time Austin was 10! I am not even kidding. I handstitched the entire thing. Not once did I use a sewing machine. Not because I have anything against using one to make quilts, but because they SCARE me. That's right, I am intimidated by sewing machines. Kat's daughter, Nana, encouraged me to try it out because it's not that bad. She went on to tell me about a certain injury she sustained while using a machine which wasn't the best encouragement. lol :-) Actually, just the other day I purchased a used Singer from another American that lives nearby who will soon be moving back to the States. Nana, aren't you proud of me? I'll let you in on a little secret... it's been sitting here for a week and I haven't plugged it in! I'm a scaredy-cat.

Anyway, back to my entry.

I made this cute, little wall hanging in 2002. As I pieced this together, I taught my friend, Jen, how to quilt.

The problem with quilters is that they often have several projects going at once that are put down, and if you're raising a family, they might be picked up again after several years go by. I made this quilt in 2000 around the time our 3rd child, Melanie, was born.

Here is a close-up of it.

This pile is my latest project that I am working on. I bought the sewing machine to help get the job done a lot quicker. The funny thing is this particular quilt has a large amount of applique' work that has to be done to it, which has to be done by hand. My husband gently asked me, "So why did you buy the sewing machine if you knew you would be appliqueing?" I quickly retorted with something along the lines of "Well I still need to use the sewing machine for other squares I have to make. But in all honesty, that machine scares me." I'm a chicken I tell ya!

I have to applique' 6 sets of these lovely flowers. By the way, it will take me weeks to months to do that!

So there you have it, Folks, my entry into the County Fair over at "Art's Chili". Thanks for taking a peak and please pray that I'll get my nerve up to learn how to use my new Singer.


Darcie said...

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! I am just in awe of the work that went into all of those. I have never thought of quilting, but you make it sound interesting. Beautiful work, my friend.

Heart2Heart said...

You are one amazing quilter! Mine would pale in comparison to yours! Simply beautiful and I love the tea quilt!

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

He & Me + 3 said...

Wow Carol...those are all beautiful! Great job!

Rachel said...

GORGEOUS! You're so multi-talented!!

Five Moms & A Blog said...

These are beautiful! What a joy it must be to make something lasting like that. My friend quilts and I helped make a quilt once, but it was for children in an orphanage in Romania.

Still, I enjoyed it but don't know enough to do it on my own.

~ Nan

Martha said...

Visiting for The Country Fair and your quilting is so wonderful and beautiful. Thanks for sharing your artistry.

Mimmy said...

Your quilts are wonderful. My only attempts have been pieced by sewing machine and tied with embroidery floss at the every place four corners of a square meet. They were made more for functionality than beutification. I with I had heard about the fair earlier so I could "enter" some of my decorative boxes but I've given most of them away and the pictures I have are not very good. Maybe next time.

God Bless,

LisaShaw said...

WOW! Beautiful!!!

The Lehman's said...

Great post Carol. Love all the quilts. Congrats on the new machine. I think you will really enjoy it once you try plugging it in. If not you could at least store long strips of fabric on it (ha ha). After a little practice I am sure you will love it. Good luck--keep us updated on your progress. julie :)

chili pepper said...

Wow! Your quilts are a work of art. Yes, as moms it is not uncommon to have a project sitting around for a long time! I am with you. I prefer hand work on quilts. I actually did one about the time Emma was born. I was taking a class on machine quilting. So I machine quilted. I hated it. I spent a year or more picking it all out and another year redoing the quilting! My husband kept asking with a confused look, "Wasn't that finished last year?"

The machine really is easy! My girls have been using a sewing machine since their legs could reach the pedal. And I have appliqued on the machine and I actually prefer the look of that to the hand applique. Of course it is a matter of preference but it is much quicker.

Feel free to email any questions and I will be whatever help I can. you have taken the first important step of getting a machine! Finding someone who sews and letting them mentor you as you did the lady you taught to quilt is the easiest way to go about it, though.

I got in last night and I am trying to visit everyone so we can get the drawing up. Check in later for the results!


Nana said...

You go girl! Now you'll have to show us what you make with your sewing machine. Good luck on whatever you devide to make next!

Your quilts, are awesome! I love the way quilts look, but I am not patient enough, to do all the hand quilting, and I don't like machine quilting, so it's a toss up! I did make on once and yes, it did take me a few years, until Mom said I had to do x amount of squares, aday until it was finished. Then it was finished in a week!

Good job, and you must be extremley patient!