Thursday, March 12, 2015

More About Me . . .

A Midwest native, I grew up in St. Louis Park, a small suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota. My mother was an accomplished seamstress, sewing clothes for my younger brother and me for as long as we would tolerate. One of my most favorite memories is that of a small cigar box where she kept her embroidery threads. I could sit for hours gently fingering all the colorful strands of thread.

For as long as I can remember, I have loved art and anything to do with fiber. I began as a weaver in college. After graduating with a degree in Commercial Art and Advertising, I married my High School Sweetheart and worked for many years as a Graphic Designer in Seattle, Washington.

My quilting journey began, when I took a hand-quilting class offered by the Seattle Art Museum, in October of 1985. Nancyann Twelker patiently guided the class through the basics of hand piecing. At that time, our templates were pieces of recycled x-ray film, cut to size and placed on a piece of fabric. We then traced around the edges with a pencil, and cut along these pencil lines with a pair of scissors. Rotary cutters and mat boards had not come into existence yet. Times certainly have changed, and so have my methods of quilting! During the earlier school years, while raising two wonderful boys here in the Pacific Northwest, I was able to enjoy five years of teaching an Art Literacy Program as a volunteer within our local school district. 

I work intuitively, constructing quilts and letting the design choose its own direction. This can lead to many new discoveries – things that would not reveal themselves thru ‘following lessons’ or by taking a class. I am fascinated with line, pattern, color and texture and how to create with these elements. I enjoy the constant ongoing process and exploration. 

Then, as an Instructor and Sales Associate for Viking Sewing Machines, I cycled back and forth between quilting, general sewing and garment construction. I’ve also had the pleasure of working and teaching for several years at a local Quilt Shop, and another three years as a Bernina Educator. These opportunities not only offered exposure to a number of different sewing, piecing and quilting techniques but thru teaching, an opportunity to share ideas with many people. I have been designing my patterns since 2000.

Currently, I am exploring quilt design more abstractly. I have started experimenting with some new techniques, working mostly with scraps of fabric, cutting them free hand – using a pair of scissors, and randomly piecing or appliqueing. This can be very liberating as well as introspective. 

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