i started making quilts in 2oo4. i had always collected fabric, and i'd noticed the cotton quilting batting at the fabric store. i was drawn to it. so i bought a little packet. my aunt lent me her sewing machine, i sewed squares together for a top and sandwiched it all with a piece of fabric on the back. i had to play around with the edging, sorting out what worked and what didn't. but i had figured it out. i made a few baby quilts, but the large bed-sized ones started in october. gala, our great dane, had died in july. and after a search we'd found a puppy (edgar) and i needed to pay for him. i started making quilts all day. i had little sales from my living room. my friend and i drove around to little gift shops and b&b's selling them. and that was the start. i only have a few of the early quilts. but, i'm exceedingly hard on them.....they stay out on the porch swing all summer. in fact, there are two out there still, in november. they get washed almost daily because of edgar slobber or kitty puke. so the early ones have faded. some of my favorite fabrics were in them, fabrics from the beginnings of my fabric collection that i bought purely because i loved them, not ever thinking i'd make anything with them.....i didn't think i knew how.
last summer i was doing a little tour of suburban garage sales, scoping from the car and moving on if all i saw was baby clothes and plastic toys. i stopped at one that turned out to be disappointing, until....i started to hyper-ventilate. literally. i thought my heart was going to explode. i couldn't talk. i don't think i've felt this way since i was 14 and the cute boy i liked was walking towards me in the hall. there was one of my very first quilts. never been washed. with the original little paper tag i'd hung on them. with my original price of $175. this was one of the quilts we'd sold to a little gift/antique shop. i usually take $60 as a garage sale limit.....it was all untouched in my pocket. there wasn't a garage sale price on the quilt, just my original price, in my hand-writing. but i lost my head. i found the proprietess, offered her $60, told her it was all i had. and she accepted. and i ran to the car, shaking.
this is a photo of our bed this morning.....the old/new quilt smiling in the sun, with all my favorite old fabrics looking fresh and bright and new. i love this quilt, even though it wasn't one of my favorites then, it still gives me butterflies now when i see it. and i smile.