Virginia is teaching class 5011
Matt: How long have you been quilting? What made you begin quilting?
Virginia: I have been quilting over 25 years and I started after a surgery that corrected a misdiagnosed back problem that had kept me in bed for close to 7 years. I had always wanted to quilt but knew I didn’t have the patience to do everything by hand. However, this was about 1976 and the sewing machine had just started to become a popular way to both piece and quilt and that approach the quilting fit in my short attention span. As a result, using the sewing machine began a lifelong addiction, avocation and a business that includes teaching, lecturing, developing quilting tools and writing quilting books.
M: Do you have a quilting studio? How big and is there anything unique that you keep in your studio?
V: Yes, I actually have two work areas. One is a studio where I design, cut and sew and the other is a business office and additional work ant storage space. Both are additions to our home, I do most of my sewing in our ‘studio/family room’ and do most of the paperwork and store fabric for Fabric Kits in the upstairs addition. (My husband says if I try to add any more additions for my fabric – he’ll move both me and the fabric outside, sigh!)
M: What do you consider your quilting “specialty” or what makes you unique in the quilting world?
V: I am known for my easy sewing machine piecing techniques especially a ‘No Pins’ circular and oval curve sewing method. In addition, my ability to combine Fabric and Color in a Quilt, in other words, ‘how to’ combine fabric to create the effect desired in a quilt.
M: What is your favorite color schemes to work with?
V: It is easier to list my least favorite color combinations, which would be pastel quilts. I basically love fabric (which is tough on my bank balance), however I do have a slight preference for fabric combinations of blue, turquoise, green purple, fuchsia and black.
M: What books or articles have you written?
V:I have just finished my 10th book and write numerous articles for both national and international magazines. In the US, my most recent articles were in the May/June ’09 issue of “Love of Quilting: and the Sept. 09 issue of “The Quilter Magazine.”
M: What do you do while you quilt?
V: I usually either watch TV or listen to the radio.
M: What is your quilting inspiration?
V: Almost anything inspires me from traditional patterns to graphics of everything, especially Roman Mosaics. (My children accuse me of never taking pictures of them, but if there is an interesting ceiling or tile work in a bathroom, it will be in my camera.)
M: What is the funniest moment you have had happen while you were teaching?
V: While teaching in France I used a common word in the US to describe damaging a rotary cutter blade. While I didn’t know what I had said wrong, the gasps and hands covering faces were a big clue that I had said something very wrong. Once I convinced someone to whisper what I had done or said that caused the embarrassment, I rephrased the statement. However, I have never used that particular word again.
M: What was the best class you have ever taken?
V: The best class I even took was taught by one of Jenny Beyer’s first students. She was teaching Sampler Classes that covered both traditional patterns as well as drafting. She was not only a great teacher, but opened my eyes to the creative potential of essentially ‘painting’ with fabric and also the delight of designing my own original quilts.