As you may have guessed by the name of one of my shops, Elle Quilts, that I do have a thing for quilts. There's news about that shop, but it will have to wait for another post. One of the problems that I think quilters have in selling their quilts and other quilted items is that the general public really has no idea what goes into the making of a quilt, and the talent and skills necessary to make a quilt. Really, how hard can it be? Sew some fabric pieces together, do a little stitching on the outside and, bam, you've got a quilt.
I'd like to introduce you to some quilters, and some quilt techniqes and designs in my new "Get to Know a Quilter" and "Get to Know Quilts" series.
First up, Tiffany of Warm 'n Fuzzies. By the way, she's the one to contact if you make quilts and want to join the Quiltsy Team on Etsy. Tiffany first learned her basic sewing skills in 4-H when she was 10 years old. This stay-at-home mom of two boys, has been quilting for almost 15 years now, since my oldest son was born. She is entirely self-taught, never having taken a quilting class. She watches quilting shows, buys books and searches the internet. Have you ever seen an Amish quilt? Tiffany had always admired the Amish and their quilts, but couldn't afford to purchase one. She bought a sampler quilt quilting book and taught herself.
She says, "My very first quilt was completely done by hand and I recommend that everyone learn that way because it is very accurate when pieced. I used cardboard templates and scissors. The first person I showed it to, when it was finished, was a veteran quilter and she could not believe it was my first quilt and that I had never taken a class. Now it sits at the bottom of a stack of quilts because the colors are so 80's and it doesn't go with anything else in my house."
Tiffany and I share an interest in the Cathedral Window quilts. This is a unique quilt style that does not have what you might consider traditional quilting. Tiffany describes it well when she says, "They remind me of origami with all the folding." I've made one block, and decided I didn't have the patience. However, Tiffany has made many, many blocks, and turns them into gorgeous pillows in her shop.
Not a style that many people might choose, Tiffany has modernized it for her pillow covers, removing the traditional ruffle, and using beautiful batik fabrics. Her covers are made entirely by hand, though she has begun using some machine stitching to connect the squares. I've included this close up photo of one of her pillows. All the stitching that is done around the colored squares is done by hand. She estimates that it takes about 7 to 9 hours to complete one 18" pillow cover. One great thing about the cathedral window style is that it is a great take along project because it is done by hand. Her pillow covers are supposed to be in a how to book that will come out next year.
Tiffany doesn't limit herself to just this one style, however. Visit her shop and you'll see that she also makes other traditional quilts, many for babies (like the one pictured here). You'll also find market bags, and pot holders, and she also takes custom orders.
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