I made my first quilt on the mother’s ancient Singer at the age of 22, turning the handle with one hand and guiding the fabric (not very evenly) with the other. It was a rather ambitious double bed quilt (which I still have – much loved and threadbare) and I had no idea what I was doing but I was instantly hooked.
Career and then family followed through the years but making quilts was the constant. Though there was often little time for sewing still somehow quilts got made for family and friends.
A career break followed family and an opportunity to study sculpture at Edinburgh College of Art led to three wonderfully fulfilling years of flexing my creative muscle and developing my own visual language. I made 3D work using fabric relating to emotions, memory and interpersonal relationships, including my ‘eye quilt’ – a traditional paper pieced hexagon block with a bit of a ‘twist’!
I am now looking forward to the next chapter, a long-held dream of running a quilt shop – it’s really just an excuse to be surrounded by delicious fabric and to justify more time spent sewing (and chatting and drinking tea).
I used to imagine I was a pioneer woman in a past life, scratching out a humble existence in the great plains of America, but that probably came from watching too much ‘Little House on the Prairie’ as a child! Still, I love the history and tradition of the blocks, the patterns and colours make me happy and sewing soothes me.
I always hoped to live somewhere with a vibrant, dynamic quilting community and a quilt shop stuffed full of fabulous fabric just begging to be made into a quilt. Well, Edinburgh already has a great quilting community and for my part, I’m working hard to stuff the shop full of lovely fabric!