A while back, Quiltmaker announced that we were looking for QM readers to work on a one-time project. We selected eight women as the Back to School Sewing Team. I’m happy to introduce them this week.
Meet Julie Sanders from Burlingame, Kansas.
Julie blogs at Happy to be Scrappy.
Julie Sanders is from Burlingame, Kansas.
Julie sewed with Kaya fabrics from Hoffman California for the Back to School project.
Made by Julie Sanders. Fabric: Kaya from Hoffman California Fabrics.
This quilt has a completely different vibe than today’s other quilt. Hip-Hopscotch is such an adaptable pattern—part of the reason we chose it for Back to School! I love the icy color scheme in the Hoffman fabrics, which is very calming.
I asked Julie about herself and her quilting journey. You’ll hear her answers in her own words below.
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I am from the small town of Burlingame, Kansas, population less than 1,000. In spite of our small size, we do have a great quilt shop, the Great Plains Quilt Company.
I started sewing when I was very young. My mother helped me make my first doll quilt when I was around seven years old. Over the years I have made clothes for my daughter, dolls and other craft and home dec projects. I got the quilting bug in 1998 when I made my first bed-size quilt out of 9″ squares.
The most influential person in my quilting journey has been my mother, Clarel, who taught me to sew and took me to my first quilt shop. When I was around 10 we went to a quilt shop where I saw a patchwork dog—just like the dogs that have become popular again 40 years later.
The doll quilt and the patchwork pup that started Julie Sanders on a quiltmaking journey
The shop owner allowed me to draw a picture of the dog which was made from simple 3″ squares. When mom and I got home we picked out fabrics from her stash and I had a patchwork dog made in no time at all. I still have the first doll quilt we made together and even that patchwork dog.
Mom and I spend a lot of our time together talking about our quilting projects. We still frequent the quilt shops and have recently started going to a monthly quilting group that includes one of my sisters. Quilting is a connecting thread for three generations of my family. I’m working on passing it along to the fourth. My six-year-old granddaughter Grace likes fabric, too.
Julie is passing a love for sewing to her granddaughter Grace.
One of the highlights of my quilting was when my mother and I took a class from Bonnie Hunter. Bonnie has been a great teacher of all things scrappy. The class with Bonnie was everything I had hoped it would be. She has shown me that not all quilts need to be perfect. Sometimes your seams are not going to match. And yes, every once in a while two matching patches might end up next to each other.
Bonnie Hunter writes a column called Addicted to Scraps for Quiltmaker, which features scrappy blocks made from common shapes.
(Editor’s Note: Please see Bonnie’s Addicted to Scraps column in every regular issue of Quiltmaker. See all the Addicted to Scraps blocks online.)
My advice to a new quilter would be to go easy on yourself. I’m still learning new things all the time. With this project for Quiltmaker, I didn’t know how to do the quilting that was required so I started practicing with a pencil and paper, then I practiced on scrap fabric until I was ready to start stitching on the actual quilt. Practice, practice, practice. By the way, I’m very happy with the way the free motion quilting turned out on my Back to School quilt.
I practiced the quilting on paper to get a feel for this new design.
I quilt for many reasons. Quilting is relaxation, therapy, stimulation, and satisfaction in a job well done. I mentioned one day to the music appreciation instructor at our local college that she is always humming and singing. She said she doesn’t mean to, that music is always in her head. Well, I feel the same way about quilting. There always seems to be something quilt related running through my mind.
When I applied to Quiltmaker for the Back to School Party I had to set aside many self doubts. I’m so glad I did. This has been a very rewarding project. I’ve met other quilters who had the same doubts and concerns that I did. If you’ve ever considered signing up for something like this—do it. You might enjoy it!
Our sincere thanks to Julie Sanders for her work
on the Back to School Party.
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