Tuesday, February 1, 2011


When Wayne Kollinger asked me the above question, I didn’t have to think long.  There are numerous examples.  Other blogs.  Books. Signs.  My great grandson.  I could go on and on as I’m always looking for something new and different to quilt, which is probably the reason I have so many UFOs.  There is always something to inspire me to start a new project. 

I’ve been a sewer since I was a child, but was inspired to start quilting about 10 years ago for two reasons:  1. I needed to keep my hands busy so I wouldn’t eat cookies from the time I got home from work until I went to bed.  2. I knew I would be retiring before too long and I needed a hobby and a place to meet new friends. 

I attended classes at my local quilt shop and tried piecing the traditional blocks.  However, after going to my first quilt show and seeing appliqué, I was inspired to try my hand at that.  I didn’t take pictures of my early attempts at traditional blocks, which was probably for the better as I never quite managed to cut anything straight or sew a straight line. With appliqué, I found my home.  Pictured above is Wooly Flower Sampler by Starry Pines Pattern Co.  I don’t care for wool, so I did it all in cottons.

After years of appliqué and still making feeble attempts at piecing, I continued to search for something new.  Mary Lou Weidman came to Grand Rapids and I took a couple classes from her.  She inspired me to cut loose and do some free piecing.  She also inspired me to work with bold colors and put them together in unique ways.  She is certainly my inspiration.  I love her work and hope to add these pieces above to my story quilt.  

I love looking at blogs and seeing what others do.  I should be called the Copyblogger (ooops, that name is already taken) because I’m pretty good at copying what others do.  I made this small quilt when I was inspired by Carol at Mamacjt’s blog.  I blogged about it here.
One day I received an e-mail from an artist’s blog that I subscribe to, Gapingvoid,  and became inspired.  I knew that I had to make this for my great grandson.  After making the “animal” I was inspired by the blog 15 Minutes At Play to make scrappy blocks for the rest of the quilt.  When I saw the book Word Play Quilts and visited Lazy Gal QuiltingI added a word at the bottom.  I’ll show you the full quilt when it is finished.

I must be a visual person because it is the things I see that inspire me.  I love going into a quilt shop and seeing new samples.  I find if I just look around with open eyes, there are a zillion things to inspire me.  I am inspired by Wayne Kollinger's Sketch Book because he shows me that you can do different things with a traditional quilt block.   I love the way he works with the Fibonacci sequence to create interesting Wonky blocks and borders.   

How about you? What inspires you to start a quilt? Please leave a comment below. Or if you'd rather write in your blog, email me at carolldrudy@comcast.net  and I'll link to it; and email Wayne at tuxedoparkdesign@shaw.ca so he can link to your blog too.


Linda said...

Many times it's a pattern. I see a beautiful pattern that strikes me and I'm off looking for the fabric to suit it! I'm always inspired by amazing pattern designs!

Wayne Kollinger said...


Ever since I asked the question about why you start a quilt, I've been trying to guess the reasons people would give. I never imagined that to keep from eating cookies would be one of the answers.

Miss Hillbilly said...

A copy blogger is the blogger of the best sort! I look forward to copying (I mean gleaning information) from you!

Tennye said...

Love your post, I too wrote the answer to the question on my blog.

Mama Pea said...

I'm like you, Caroll. Lots of things can inspire me to start a quilt. And also to keep from eating in front of the TV! Great post. Love it.

Cheryl said...

Yes I have to agree with a lot of what you said. I have breakfast with a couple quilty friends every week and we always come with ideas/patterns and have a breakfast brainstorming session. The blogs definitely keep me inspired. You see a quilt on one blog, that takes you to another and then another!!!

West Michigan Quilter said...

I wanted to share what Karen had to say about her inspiration:
It doesn't take much to inspire me!
1. Caroll Drudy (serious). When I sign on, my first place to visit is Attic Window to see what you are up to this minute. I've spent many relaxing hours wandering from blog to blog, site to sight. Also spending a lot more money at Attic Window (good for them)
2. I've always wanted/needed to be crafty and creative, so I have evolved or rather gravitated to quilting.
3. Folks say to me all the time "you think outside the box" guess what my big srcret is: I can't figure out how to get IN the box. For a long time I thought I was in the box and could never figure out why my creations didn't look like theirs. I've long ago learned to say with a sincere attitude and smile that "that isn't a mistake, it's a design decision".
One of my favorite finds was to discover that there are two options to fabric. It's not that there is a right or wrong side of any fabric,but rather a bright side and a wonderful "shadow" of the same print.
4. The weather. I'll take any time I can (which for the past few month is not often) to sew. I am most inspired if I can sit in sunshine to sew, but today it will be because of the snow I will not be going to work.
5. Unlike you and applique, I've not found my groove. I am addicted to paperpiecing because (again) it's just enough outside the box and I'm very comfortable with that process of working upside down and backwords that paperpiecing involves.
I've emailed you before, and just love all your posts and directing us to all the other wonderful blogs. My favorites has expanded because of you. Thank you.
Thanks Karen for sharing with us! You are a jewel!

Millie said...

I am with you, I can find inspiration in a book or fabric and it is so much better for me to quilt than to eat.

Micki said...

For me, it is the inspiration that I get from certain books or from other blogs.


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