Sunday, June 3, 2012

Fraser Valley Quilt Guild.... featured member...

Raa, raa, sis boom ba! If you don’t know Darlene already you must know she is our resident cheerleader! We love listening to her talk about blogs, prairie points anything vintage! Her excitement has always been contagious and we love her for that! I think we need to make her some Pom Poms! Perhaps made out of salvages, wha’dya think?
1. Who taught you to sew and what age were you?
Sigh, I taught myself. I started sewing in grade eight as “Sewing” was one semester of my Home Economics class – Hey, it was the early 1970’s…. I made a very ugly poncho, oh I still remember it, green plaid with very ugly braid trim……. I actually hated sewing at that time. Total C+ chick.
2. Do you remember the moment when you realized you loved sewing and fabric?
It was a Butterick pattern that I really wanted to make and wear…. And by using the sewing machines at the school I made it and it was great! Navy and white polka dots as I recall and a big collar…. Hey it was the 1970’s!
Definitely LOVE, when for my ‘Sweet Sixteenth’ birthday I chose a sewing machine over a ten-speed bike. Again, this was the 1970’s and our family budget was very tight, so I had to choose…. My mother was convinced that it would be a waste to buy the sewing machine for me…. But I certainly proved her wrong!
3. Have you passed on the addiction? Have you taught anyone else to sew? Is there anyone especially who comes to mind?
NO, I am “SEW” alone in that regard…. No one else in the family sews….
Greek Cross quilt a long - still not done
4. You make quilts but there other creative things you do that involves thread and needles?
OMG, what haven’t I sewn? … when I was single (late 70’s early 80’s) I sewed myself dozens of skirts! I knew how to rock a pair of pumps and a pencil skirt! Then marriage to my hub and I sewed lots of duvets, a few quilts, draperies including all sorts of really puffy valances for my mom; children clothes, children clothes, children clothes…. Did I mention that I used to sew children clothes? And only for my children… my daughter only wore dresses until she started kindergarten! Sigh …
I have only decided to take quilting seriously again since 2008! Which was the time that the funky fun fabrics available online started to multiply exponentially!!
5. When you’re not quilting (or using thread and needles) what other things do you do?
Gardening – I have a major crush on Hydrangea shrubs – I have at least twenty in my yard! They are beautiful!! I also love repainting furniture and browsing vintage markets and thrift stores!
6. Where do you sew, is it in a studio, at a kitchen table?
I do have a sewing room which I love, but when my children were little I always sewed at the kitchen table. My sewing machine was almost a permanent fixture.
7. Do you listen to music, watch movies or do you just listen to you sewing machine hmmm as you sew along? If yes to music or movies, what were you listening to the last time you were working on a quilt?
I like the sound of the sewing machine whirring. I like to tune into my sewing I guess and don’t enjoy watching anything while sewing or planning, designing. I don’t even listen to music now that I think of it.
8. When do you sew? Are you a daytime or nighttime quilter?
MORNING – I am an early bird.
Love sewing for everyday...
9. Is there a certain quilting tool you couldn’t live without and think everyone else should have too?
Okay, I bought my first 1/4” foot last fall. What a difference that makes; yes that is embarrassing to admit, but true. And I have a big crush on my new EUROSTEAM iron and a bottle of Best Press. When using those in my sewing room I think I am in SEWING HEAVEN.
10. If you’re stuck on a colour choice or design while quilting who do you consult or bounce ideas off of?
Again, I am SEW alone in that regard, so I often visit some of my favourite blogs to check out what is going on… usually I feel re-assured about what I want to do. Cuz really, it is down to me… that is the secret. I trust what I like.
Love Scrap quilting
11. Who is your favourite fabric designer? And why?
I owe my return to sewing to Amy Butler, I really do. She just captured the right ‘vibe’ as I like to call it; aka Vintage Modern. I love her work but my heart belongs to Camille Roskelley – Bliss, Vintage Modern are a few of her lines of fabric that really speak to me – check her out on Pinterest to see what I mean..
And AMERICAN JANE, cuz I love all things AMERICAN JANE !!
12. Who is your favourite quilt designer? And why?
Did I mention how much I adore AMERICAN JANE? She is very Vintage Modern. That is my ‘tribe’. I am a 20th century girl living in the 21st century! This makes me very lucky indeed!
Stash evidence - on mini bolts
13. Do you have a favourite quilting book or blog? If so please divulge?
Favourite? OMG, I could never choose one. At the first meeting I attended of the Fraser Valley Modern Guild I admitted to following 749 blogs (via Stumble Upon). Well that was before Pinterest arrived in the ‘blogoshere’. I lost count of the blogs in my Google Reader, but on my Pinterest SEWING board, there are currently 914 pins (as of April 16/12) Check it out! I find that I discover lots of blogs via Pinterest. But I do have a few faves, such as Cluck,Cluck,Sew; Red Pepper Quilts, Tall Grass Prairie Studio, NanaCompany and currently my browser homepage is set to She is adorable and I love seeing this site when I first turn on my laptop. What can I say? The 21st century is a wondrous time. Love technology!!
14. Let’s talk about your fabric stash, seriously how big is it? (We won’t tell, promise!)
Seriously, it is huge! I know what I like and I love ‘vintage vibe’ prints. And I have a lot of them!
Vintage Vibe fabrics, milk glass, threads..
15. What is the colour palette you tend to use the most?
I am really loving the red, pink & aqua color combos lately. But last fall I was really crushing on orange-yellow-reds, and before that it was blues & greens. Love them all.
16. Is there a colour you find you tend not to use in your quilts?
I don’t use much black; I don’t know why cuz I like black. But maybe this year…
love Mod Mosaic
17. What was the last quilt you made that you were really proud of? What the last quilt you made that you were disappointed in and what did you learn from it?
I haven’t made ‘that’ quilt yet (the one I feel so proud of) but I will. And I have never been disappointed in any project, I always learn a lot more than I realize. Quilting is my craft and I intend to work at it for a long time!
18. For many of us the ideas flow faster than our output. How many projects do you have in the works right now? And how many quilt projects do you have in the closet with plans of getting to one day?
Gosh, I will never tell cuz I really don’t know. But I do have at least six completed quilt tops that I want to quilt, or have long-arm quilted this year and that is ‘do-able’.
Double Hourglass addiction
19. Do you have a favourite quilting technique? Do you have a quilting technique you dislike?
Technique??? Oh dear, I didn’t realize… now I have been found out and will be turned out of the guild for being without technique! I am kidding but really I don’t claim any technique as I am keeping myself ‘open’ to always learning. I fear once I have become an expert that I may lose that desire to always be learning. I never want that to happen!!
20. What are some new challenges you’d like to take on right now? For example, a new technique you’re itching to try, making a larger quilt than ever before or doing something in a quilt that takes you out of you comfort zone?
Oh that is simple FREE. MOTION. QUILTING.
Love Bunting
And! Plus one more question (The BIG question!)
21. What makes your quilts modern?
Oh you must remember this….. I am a 20th century gal living in (and loving) the 21st century. My ‘vintage vibe’ inspired quilts are a fresh take on where I am from. And as a woman in her fifties (born in the fifties) I feel so pleased to see young modern women’s fresh take on the 20th century. (Okay, and the few quilting dudes out there). I love the fresh new yummy fabrics, I love the technology (the blogosphere that allows us all to connect & share). I love this new age of this wonderful craft. I am right where I want to be.
1959 darlene barnes


Lysa said...

We love you Darlene! High five you're the best!

Ioana-Carmen said...

Hey sweetie! Hope you`ll visit my blog and maybe...we can follow each other?:X