Florine Johnson Designs - Hand & Fusible Rooster Appliques for Quilts & Crafts

The Joys of Quilting...Part 2

A note from Florine ~After the Joys of Quilting...Part 1, I mentioned that Part 2 would be next week.  As it turned out, I was a few months off!  Sometimes life gets in your way and stops you from doing what you should be doing.  No excuses here, just that there were reasons for not getting back to this blogging right away.

At that point in my life as a quilter, I am neither good at piecing, nor am I good at hand applique. So I joined the East Cobb Quilters Guild in Marietta, Georgia, to see what I could learn from that group of over 200 quilters.


After attending a couple of ECQG meetings, a new zip code bee was formed in my area. I joined that group too. At that first bee meeting, everyone was very polite and smiling a lot. After the meeting, my cheeks were aching from all that smiling. Being a loner, I wondered if my cheek muscles could stand that much work once a month.  But within a few months, we grew to know each other and the meetings became one of sharing and rollicking laughter. Joining the Nimble Thimble Bee was a very good thing to do.


At one of the ECQG meetings I learned of a shop in Stone Mountain, GA, (No longer open) called the Village Quilt Shop owned by Joyce Selin. Wanting to see what the shop was like, I drove for 45 minutes to get there. I was stopped in my tracks when I saw Joyce's Baltimore Album quilt hanging on the wall. That's when the desire to learn hand applique became an obsession for me. I MADE THE DECISION* to become competent at hand applique and promptly signed up for a year long series of monthly classes.


Joyce started us with Elly Sienkiewicz's books on Baltimore Album blocks. Attached is a photo of my very first block. I was hooked! For the approximately next five years I worked on hand applique, trying to perfect my stitches and learning how to do all those dimensional flowers. I was making block after block, but not putting anything together. Just blocks.


Around that time I was also fortunate to meet an international group of quilters. Unfortunately though, through them I gained an international reputation as someone who never finished anything. But I did. I really did. I finished blocks.


Recently a well known teacher said, “I don't make quilts. I make blocks.” Do you know how relieved I was to learn I wasn't the only one making blocks instead of quilts?


Next time (please note, I didn't specify when but I will try monthly at least) I will talk about learning to do the stitches and how bad I was to begin with. DECIDE! 


* DECISIONS can really change your life!