Darlene Zimmerman

Darlene Zimmerman

Traditional Piecing Faculty Member

Darlene will be teaching classes 3012, 4010, 5014, 6015 and 7011
(Information about these classes will be posted soon)

Matt: How long have you been quilting?

Darlene: I started about 25 years ago.

Matt: What made you begin quilting?

Darlene: Two reasons: 1) I loved to sew 2) Desperation! I was a stay-at-home mom with 3 small children and one on the way. I needed to do something more than just be a mommy.

Matt: Do you have a quilting studio?

Darlene: Yes

M: How big and is there anything unique that you keep in your studio?

D: Too small!!! We added an addition to our house 18 years ago—before I had a computer, printer, fax machine, etc. and before I started designing fabrics. Now it’s stuffed with fabric and my office area takes up way too much space!

I also collect vintage toy sewing machines and pincushions of all types. I love to make my own pincushions using 30s vintage planters. (See photos)

M: What do you consider your quilting “specialty” or what makes you unique in the quilting world?

D: I’m best known for my 30s fabrics and also my quilting tools with EZ Quilting by Wrights.

M: What is your favorite color schemes to work with?

D: Pastels of course (my 30s fabrics and other pretty fabric). But I also enjoy sewing with reproduction fabrics from the 1800s—the Civil War quilts and later.

M: What books or articles have you written?

D: I frequently contribute to Am. Patchwork & Quilting magazine, McCall’s Quilting, Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting and others. I’ve written quite a few books. Those still in print are:

Fat Quarter Small Quilts

Granny Quilts

Granny Quilt Decor

The Quilter’s Edge

Quilting: The Complete Guide

Quilts from Lavender Hill Farm

I’ve also started self-publishing patterns. You can see them on my website: www.feedsacklady.com

M: What do you do while you quilt? Do you listen to music?

D: I usually have music playing while I’m sewing on the machine. I do quite a bit of hand applique and quilting, which I generally do in the evening while watching tv or listening to audio books.

M: What is your quilting inspiration?

D: Primarily old quilts…. I have a collection of the state quilt search books that I love to page through. In the past quilters weren’t so bound by color or quilting “rules” and were very inventive. I look for interesting color combinations, interesting settings or border treatments. Since I work primarily with reproduction fabrics I also try and determine what is typical in design and color for a time period.

M: What is the funniest moment you have had happen while you were teaching?

D: The most exciting moment was when a woman dropped her small scissors which caused a deep puncture wound. There was blood everywhere! She had to go to the emergency room to get it stitched up and have tetanus shots.

funniest moment (for me) was when a woman in class was having problems with her machine “eating” her fabric. I suggested The she change her needle. She replied “You can replace the needle??”

M: What was the best class you have ever taken?

Unfortunately I’m usually teaching classes, not taking them. However, I took a wonderful design class with Jeanna Kimball years ago, and still remember what she taught us that day.