I have loved fabric ever since I was a child and allowed to rummage through my mother's scrap bag for pieces big enough for my doll's clothes. I would cut out rough shapes with dull scissors, take large stitches with needle and thread, and make the most "beautiful" clothes for my little friends. At least, I thought so. The colors, shapes and seemingly endless variety in that bag were so exciting.
In 1993, I took my first quilting class, a traditional sampler. The second class introduced drafting patterns and the third focused on an improvisational way to approach the design wall. I love the idea of working directly on the wall and seeing the possibilities. It was love at first cut with my rotary cutter. After that class, I saw the whole idea of quilt making differently and I have stayed with that vision ever since.
During the later part of the 1990's, I started investigating the art glass scene in the Pacific Northwest. I loved the idea of spontaneity and speed of working with something hot and dangerous. My mind and creative spirit were drifting away from the fabric and quilt making. Seriously considering leaving quilts and moving on to glass, I volunteered at the Pilchuck Glass School and was drawn in by the excitement and drama that surrounded art glass. There was a huge struggle within me and I finally had to make a decision. Choose one or the other. Quilt making or art glass.
It took sitting down with a pencil and paper in the quiet of my studio, writing down the aspects I loved about both art forms. I actually divided that paper in half and made two lists. I loved that tactile aspect of the fabrics, the familiarity and comfort of a life long relationship, the access to materials. I was unwilling to abandon quilts for the unknown art of glass.
So, I decided to take the precepts that I love about glass and apply them to the fabric and quilt making. I set a timer to create an atmosphere of speed and quick decision making. This helped me to calm my mind and let my inner voice speak. I used scissors instead of the rotary cutter to create a sharper edge. These simple changes helped me over the decision between glass and fabric and on to a different phase of my work.
Excellent composition is what I strive for and look for in art. Michelangelo and Claude Monet are the masters I look towards for inspiration and answers to questions. I accept that struggle is to be a part of my creative process. Satisfaction comes from a piece that comes close to my vision or a new discovery that presents itself.
Currently I am traveling and looking towards folk art traditions around the world to influence my work. I make quilts to satisfy myself and feel a great affection towards each one as they are close to my heart.