What Learning To Quilt Could Offer You!
Perhaps you’re already a sewing enthusiast, but you’ve never turned your needle from fashion projects to something new… or perhaps you’ve never picked up a needle and thread – yet learning to quilt is very much on your crafty ‘To Do’ list this year! Whatever your starting point, we’re here with self-taught quilter Sue Cork – a brand new face to the Create and Craft Blog! – to dive into exactly why learning to quilt is such a rewarding pastime, and how you can benefit from giving quilting a go yourself!
Five Reasons Why Learning To Quilt Is A Fantastic Crafting Choice!
Flex Your Creative Muscle:
When it comes to learning to quilt, there are no rules – it’s a fantastic opportunity to really unleash your creativity, and go as wild as you like (or as subtle!) when it comes to colours, shapes and quilt designs. Select and combine your favourite fabrics; use coordinating colours with a clear colourscheme, or create something bold and beautiful to breath life into a room. You could quilt with geometric shapes, pretty patterns, a patchwork style or something else… if you can visualize it, you can create it!
If you’ve only just begun learning to quilt and you’d rather have a look through some existing quilt patterns for inspiration, you can check out 8 Fantastic Quilt Patterns on our blog right here!
Make Quilting Gifts for Loved Ones:
As every crafter knows, giving a handmade gift is so much more personal than handing over something shop-bought on a loved one’s birthday or special occasion… and with quilting, you have the power to create something truly incredible for your recipient to cherish for years to come! Forget chocolates that will soon be eaten, perfumes that will run out, or flowers that will wilt – a quilt can be used to snuggle up under winter after winter, and will always remind that someone special of the effort you put into creating something unique just for them!
It’s Food For The Brain:
These days we’re forever being told about the importance of mindfulness, the need to switch off from our busy lives, and carve out time to relax and smell the roses… but for some of us this can be a real challenge! Learning to quilt, however, offers the ideal remedy from life’s day-to-day madness, forcing you to take the time to sit and relax, whilst still providing the mind with something to think about and focus on. Not only does it promote mindfulness, but it also satisfies the appetite for project management some can find themselves craving following retirement from previously busy or demanding careers. Each quilt project can be as demanding or as carefree as you’d like it to be!
Start a Family Tradition:
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could create something so beautiful that it could be cherished for generations? Or you could start a family tradition whereby quilts are created and passed down by multiple members of the family, to be enjoyed in many households? Perhaps you could teach a friend, sibling, child or grandchild to quilt, and discover a fantastic way to spend more quality time together, whilst passing on a valuable skill? If your loved ones are also interested in learning to quilt, it could be a fantastic hobby you pursue together!
It’s A Great Way To Be More Charitable:
There are several charities out there these days that collect quilts for children and adults in care, underprivileged children, veterans, and the homeless to name a few. Start donating your finished quilts to charity, and you could make an incredible difference to someone’s life – offering comfort to a sick child, or extra warmth to someone forced to sleep through winter without a roof over their head. Experienced quilter, Sue Cork, regularly creates and donates quilts to Project Linus. You can read more about Sue’s work and the fantastic charity you too can quilt for, below!
Meet Sue Cork…
Sue Cork is a self-taught quilter with years of experience. Sue first got into the field of quilting when a good friend ran a couple of one-day workshops about 14 years ago, teaching groups of people to produce a ‘quilt top in a day’. They asked Sue to help, as she had lots of sewing machine experience, and could lend and supervise 3 extra sewing machines. Sue also helped with lots of pre-cutting, which taught her the basics and introduced her to the craft! She started quilting in earnest about 12 years ago, but has been doing a lot more in the last 7 years or so, making quilts for friends, family and about 20 for charity, as well as a collection in her house!
Although Sue is a new face to the Create and Craft blog, Sue has been busy quilting behind the scenes for a few years now. As mother of Create and Craft’s PR and Events Executive, Samantha Jeffries, Sue has been able to offer her expertise with new, innovative products such as Tattered Lace Deep Dish Dies; working alongside Stephanie Weightman creating and crafting quilts to be used in photography for magazines, shows on the Create and Craft channel, and also at craft shows across the UK!
Sue is completely self-taught, has never been to a quilting class and used to be a wardrobe mistress at Tolethorpe. Now a member of the Embroiderer’s Guild, she attends a weekly local sewing group for a bit of knit and natter, and a monthly stitch group which consists of textile artists, all doing complex embroidery.
“Quilting gives you so much freedom to do your own thing, so many patterns and colour schemes, as well as the choice of making quilts for all size beds, cots, laps, wall hangings, throws and play mats, plus bags, cushions, table runners, place mats, coasters, Christmas stockings, toy bags and more!”
Retired from being a Civil Engineering Draughtswoman, Sue is qualified as an Adult Education Tutor and now enjoys donating quilts to Project Linus. Project Linus is a volunteer organisation that aims to provide a sense of security and comfort to sick and traumatised babies, children and teenagers through the provision of new homemade patchwork quilts and knitted blankets.
Sue added, “When the Grantham Embroiderer’s Guild booked a Project Linus coordinator as a speaker, one of the things I remember most was the need for quilts suitable for boys, as so many donated quilts feature pretty floral, pastel, and pink themes. Very few are suitable to give to a teenage boy, or even a baby boy, and hope that they will be treasured!
When asked what quilts she prefers, Sue said “I have dabbled in traditional quilts, with lots of different patterns, but my favourite quilts tend to be more ‘art quilts’ that give a lot of scope to use my love of colour, drawing and painting to produce a fabric piece of art.”