Thursday, September 6, 2018

Because Quilters (Like RAMONA!) Are the Nicest People, I Am FINALLY Joining a Quilt Guild

I'm starting today's post with a shout-out to Ramona, who blogs about her quilting and other needlecrafts over at Doodlebugs and Rosebuds Quilts.  I have never met Ramona in person, but she is one of the many kind and generous quilters I've had the pleasure to connect with on the Internet through the various quilting linky parties in which I participate.  So Ramona read my last blog post  where I mentioned that I'd given up all hope of finding anymore of the leaf fabric I needed to complete my eight remaining FrankenWhiggish Rose needle turned applique blocks.  And then Ramona, out of the sheer goodness of her quilter's heart, took it upon herself to hunt down my discontinued, out-of-stock fabric and FOUND IT for me on eBay!!!

This Project Has Been SAVED By the Kindness Of a Stranger
Can you believe that?!  Of course you can, because if you're reading my blog in the first place, chances are good that YOU'RE a quilter and you have heart of gold, too.  I cannot even begin to express how grateful I am.  Of course I had done every Internet search I could think of when I first discovered the fabric shortage a few months ago, but at that time I came up empty-handed and it didn't occur to me to keep checking since the fabric was so old to begin with.  I started working on this in 2014, so the "Sandy's Garden" fabric was LONG since discontinued.

YES!!!  New Yardage From eBay Is An Exact Match to My Strip From 2014!
Seriously, you guys -- my heart runneth over.  And Ramona, if you ever need a kidney or anything, please give me a call.  I owe you one!

I'll probably give this quilt another name if I ever finish it, but for now I'm calling it the FrankenWhiggish Rose because I cobbled the pattern together from different sources like a Frankenstein monster.  The traditional Whig Rose applique pattern was very popular with 19th century quilters, there are lots of variations, and I love every antique Whig Rose quilt that I've ever seen.  The quilt pictured below is a stunning example of an antique Whig Rose quilt from the collection of the International Quilt Study Center and Museum:
Whig Rose Quilt Attributed to Del Patterson circa 1895-1905, International Quilt Museum Collection
Isn't that gorgeous?  Quilter Kim Diehl reinterpreted the traditional Whig Rose pattern in 2004 in her book Simple Blessings:
Kim Diehl's Country Whig Rose Wallhanging, from her Simple Blessings Book (affiliate link)
I hadn't seen Kim's original quilt when I started mine, though -- I was smitten by another quilter's adaptation of Kim's pattern when I saw it published in the September 2006 issue of Quilter's Newsletter Magazine:

Joyce Stewart's Village Gardens Quilt, Adapted From Kim Diehl's Country Whig Rose Pattern
So I started with Joyce's pattern from the QNM magazine, but I am not a fan of hearts so I swapped those out for reverse appliqued tulip and leaf templates that I got from an antique quilt reproduction pattern in another magazine, and then I added the stuffed berries because stuffed berries are fabulous, and the broderie perse rose buds that I decided to put around the center of my main flower were because I'd never tried needle turned broderie perse and wanted to see if I could do it...  See?  An arm from this pattern, a leg from that one...  If Dr. Frankenstein had been a quilter, I'm sure this is how he would have put his quilts together, too.  

Anyway, that's where my quilt block came from, and then after making one complete block, I imported a photo of my actual quilt block into EQ software, using that photo to color plain blocks in my quilt design (the same way you'd import a photo or scan of a fabric and use that to color patches in your design).  I like to work this way, making a single block out of real fabric and then using the design software to try it out in different settings so I am sure I really love what I'm seeing on my computer screen before I go ahead and make all of the blocks, especially when it's something really time-consuming. 

My EQ8 Design for My FrankenWhiggish Rose Blocks
When I made my first block, I didn't have a whole quilt design in mind and didn't know whether I'd be making one block or several.  Once I finalized my design and knew I'd need eight more blocks just like the first one, I decided to do them assembly-line style for efficiency.  So, by the time I realized I had nowhere near enough green fabric for all of my leaves, I had already spent hours and hours and HOURS appliqueing the stems, the large layered petals, and the stacked centers onto all eight remaining blocks.  When I discovered the fabric shortage and wasn't able to locate anymore of it, I got so discouraged that I shoved the project in a bin and stopped working on it.

Now, do you understand why Ramona's gesture of kindness, taking the time to hunt down discontinued fabric for a fellow quilter she's never even met, means so much to me?  I am so excited to get this project back in my fingers again!

And the kindness of Ramona got me thinking about ALL of you wonderful quilters that I've come to know online.  My Internet quilting buddies are the best -- when I asked for help, you have emailed me lengthy tutorials, mailed me samples of your favorite products, notions, etc.  Someone made me a beautiful embroidered needle book and mailed it to me from New Zealand when I broke my collar bone in a bicycle accident a few years ago, just to cheer me up -- from NEW ZEALAND!  

And so an introverted, secretive closet quilter named Rebecca ventured forth to last night's meeting of the Charlotte Quilters' Guild, thinking that if quilters from all over the country and all over the world who've never even met me can be such wonderful people, then maybe it's worth the risk of walking into a room full of strangers to meet some of the quilters who live in my own town.  I'm going to have to play hooky from choir rehearsal on the first Wednesday of the month so I can give this quilt guild thing a try...  Wish me luck!

Do you belong to your local quilt guild?  Any advice you'd care to share with me in the comments? 

 I'm not even 100% sure that I know what one does as a member of a quilt guild besides paying the dues and showing up at the meetings.  But for now, if you'll excuse me, I have 128 leaves to cut out of my green fabric!

Today I'm linking up with:

Let’s Bee Social at 
Midweek Makers at
WOW WIP on Wednesday at 
Needle and Thread Thursday at  
• Whoop Whoop Fridays at 

• Finished Or Not Friday at 
Slow Sunday Stitching at  
Oh Scrap! at Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework at
Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts  
Main Crush Monday at Cooking Up Quilts 
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt 
Moving it Forward at Em’s Scrap Bag: 


Needled Mom said...

Quilters are the best and I can definitely see Ramona doing something like that. She is as kind as she is talented. I'm glad she was able to find the fabric and so glad that you will be able to finish your project now.

Teresa said...

Hi Rebecca, I have followed your blog for a long time, and am also a member of the Bernina Yahoo group in which your guidance and support is invaluable. I always read any and all information you share on that site. I also have a B750 that I love so much, and it makes me happy when you discuss how much you love yours as well. I have never quite gotten the hang of how to respond on that yahoo group, so please forgive that I don't contribute a lot there. Also, I enjoy reading your posts on Longarm Quilting. I have a Gammill Vision that I love. Had it almost 3 yrs. Still consider myself a beginner.

I want to say that in regards to joining a Quilt Guild, I have been a member of several guilds over the past 25 years and there are lots of great reasons to be part of a group of ladies that all share common interests and support each other, as well as charitable causes and learning more about so many different aspects of the fun and art of Quilting. Just a few words of caution. In my experience, Guilds have a way of easing you into many different service obligations that are worthy and needed. It seems like a small commitment of time, and for a good cause, and of course we are quilters after all and want to lend a hand and help others in lots of ways. Just as you said "Quilters are the Nicest People". My caution is that you don't allow all of your time and talents and kindness to be monopolized. Perhaps you are much better at setting those limits than I am so please know that this is only my personal experience with some quilds. On a positive note, I have made so many friends along the way and value each and every one of them. I hope they all feel the same about me. Your heart and hands will be very much appreciated in any quild you join.

I just noticed on your pinterest board the cute name tags that perhaps you are considering making to wear to the meetings.....loved that idea. I have been wearing a handmade nametag made by a friend in my guild for about 5 years. I might just have to make a new one! and make one for a friend also.

Kindest regards, and many thanks for all you share!

SJSM said...

I do not belong to a quilt Guild but I do belong to the American Sewing Guild. I love the comraderie. Finding others who have the same passion is difficult where I live but lo, and behold, I found a treasure trove of like minded souls in one spot. I have learned about local resources, on line resources, found they have workshops to increase your skills and you can be as involved as you wish to be. I’ve gone from an adequate Halloween and simple garment maker to an advanced sewer who dabbles into couture methods. I’ve learned to alter for my body type, improve my methods and have a lot of fun with great people. Currently I am co-Chair of our Autumn Gala being held next week. It’s a flurry of activity with lots of volunteers to make this happen. I’ve a blouse to sew before then. Off I go!

I do hope you enjoy your guild as much as I enjoy mine.

Frog Quilter said...

My grandmother quilted and belonged to a quild so I already knew the value. I have learned many thing from others which makes me a better quilter. Your quilt will be fabulous when completed.

Gretchen Weaver said...

Your whip rose is beautiful! I have the same book and I've always wanted to make one. Beautiful and Ramona was very kind to track this down for you. I worry about running out of the fabrics for a project so I always over buy! Happy stitching.

Jenny K. Lyon said...

You will love being part of a guild-they get you. YOu will find new friends, add to you "must do someday" list and I suspect you will volunteer for something really fun. Go girl!

Preeti said...

The community is the essence and heartbeat of all that we do as quilters. Of course I know Ramona. Her last project - the paper pieced stars runner is so beautiful!!! May be I should say that on her blog. Back to you. Yes, I am member of a guild. Lots of different people - lots of different personalities. Some will be kind and friendly and others will be aloof. You can be as involved as you want or as little as you can afford. In the end, you will get out of it as much as you put into it - just like anything else. Take advantage of the workshops/lectures and special discounts. Hope you will also make a few friends. I certainly did.

Shar said...

Congrats on finding your fabric. I'll be glad to see your finished quilt.

I belonged to Guilds for much of my quilting career. They were great for learning techniques, solving problems, etc. I have close friends from smaller groups or bees that came from Guild activities. I would also caution you to be wise about what you jump into. And they'll expect you to become an officer if you show any kind of leadership qualities. But soak up what you can and make friends.

chrisknits said...

Quilt Guilds have programs where you learn new things, they have retreats where you are closeted with like minded people for days of sewing, they have teachers come in from all over to teach you their skills. They are the best way to enjoy our craft for very little money and a little effort to get out 1 night a month! I hope you find your people at the guild, I have found mine!!

Julie said...

Ramona is awesome! I'm so glad she found the fabric for you. Your work is spectacular and funny thing I have seen that quilt of Kim Diehl's in person and I have had that quilt picture of Joyce's Stewart's on my bulletin board forever! I will have to live vicariously through you as I don't think I will ever make these blocks!

colleen said...

Well, hm. I do have a local guild, tell us how it goes for you.

Katie said...

Quilt guilds are great. I belong to Capital Quilters in Raleigh. Show and Tell is inspiring, there are lots of charity quilting opportunities, trunk shows and workshops are fun, information and resources are shared, swaps, block of the month, and etc. It's a large group though and can be overwhelming especiall for a new person, so the best thing is being helped to find a bee to join so you can make closer friends in a small group. Much easier for this introvert for sure. :-) And there are smaller "guilds" in my area too. Just ask around and you might find one near you that's a good fit.

Susan said...

OMG! Ramona really came through - I'm impressed she found it, and now you can finish 'er up! Congrats on joining a guild too. Just talk about quilting and you'll be fine!

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

so glad your fabric needed was tracked down that is so neat I read Ramona also. Some guilds are good and others are very clickish - you just have to try it and see if it is for you - my local one wasn't for me - I didn't like it at all as they were very clickish and not friendly - also it was a small guild and very set in their ways. Good luck in yours.

Ramona said...

Wow! I feel quite honored to receive your shout out! Quilters are the best! I belong to two quilt groups, not guilds, and really enjoy both groups of women. The inspiration I get from these women is so wonderful. Plus, they understand my addiction! :) I hope you enjoy the guild. You will give to them as much as you receive, with your talent, humor and generosity.

Carla A Few Of My Favorite Things said...

Wow what a wonderful block and your so right most quilters are wonderful too! I am a closet quilter too, so I can't help you with the guild thing.

Cynthia Brunz Designs said...

Your quilt is going to be beautiful. So happy Romona found your fabric for you so these blocks can come out of hiding. Thanks for linking up with Oh Scrap!

Quilty Friends are Priceless!

Libby in TN said...

I'm not surprised that Ramona came through for you. She is one of my favorite "virtual" friends. I say "ditto" to all the comments about guilds. My favorite guilds have been the less formal ones, where the emphasis is on getting together and sharing.

laughing gas quilts said...

Your blocks are lovely, and now they'll actually be part of a quilt! Well done to both you and Ramona. As for the guild, you'll come to love it. Participate in workshops and retreats, because that's how you really get to know your fellow members .Before long, you'll be going to the meetings and be met with, "Hi, Rebecca! how's that whig rose quilt coming?"

Diane Harris, Stash Bandit said... now several months have passed, and I'm interested in hearing how your quilt guild experience has been! I hope you're meeting new people and loving it, but if not, please stick with it. I think it takes time. The best way to meet people and feel a part of things is to take on a job in the guild. It can be something small, but it helps a lot. Before long you might want to take on something larger, and maybe together with a person you've clicked with. In speaking to quilt groups, I have found that every one has a personality. I think the leaders sort of create the guild's personality by default, but the members have a part, too. Sometimes guilds laugh uproariously at my jokes, and sometimes they won't crack a smile for all the tea in China. It's weird, but whatever the personality of your group, I'm sure you'll be a welcome addition to their membership. I can't wait to hear how it's going!