Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Coffee Talk Tuesday: Kristine Palmer

It's "Coffee Talk Tuesday" again, and it's actually happening on a Tuesday this time.  YAY!  :)  This week we'll get to know Kristine Palmer a bit.  :)  She's super sweet, a bit quiet at times, and uber talented.  So, without further ado, here's Kristine!


Kristine with a Cathedral Window pillow she completed for an OKCMQG scrap swap challenge.




Hi, Kristine!  Lets get the nitty gritty out of the way.  Do you have a blog?  Maybe a store/shop?


Yes, it's called My House Full.  Maybe this will push me to get more posts up.  It's been severely neglected.  No shop though.


So, how long have you been sewing?


I can't remember when I started sewing. Sometime between the ages of 9 and 12, I think. My mom taught me some, and I experimented some. When I was in high school, I created a marching band outfit for a troll doll as a present for a friend. I wish I had a picture - I wonder what I would think of it now. After I graduated high school, I didn't do much until I wanted to sew clothing for my kids. I still have that first outfit that I put together on my own. It has its flaws, but each of my boys were able to wear it, and it is still in great shape. In 2001 I got my first sewing machine. Then in 2004 I took a sewing class from a junior college that focused on understanding different stitches and on garments. I have learned a lot over the years. There are things that I was unaware of during high school, but now I understand the why and how.


When did quilting enter the picture?


I have been quilting for about 10 years now. I started when my mom invited me to a block-of-the-month class at the local quilt shop. I had admired my moms work, and my grandmother's creative works always awed me. The store had an ingenious plan to drive traffic to their store. On the first Saturday of January, you pay a small kit fee for the first block. Then you return the next month with your completed block, and get the next kit free. I didn't finish it every month, but from 2002 to 2008, I attended that class. It was an amazing skill builder, and I learned many techniques and got many opportunities to practice and increase my skills. Sadly, I only have one of those quilts completed. The others are waiting for me in my UFO pile.


This is one of Kristine's first quilts.  This dinosaur quilt was quilted by hand.


You'll have to finish it and bring it to a meeting!!!  :)  So, your mom and grandma were the main influence in your journey to the quilting world?


Yes, my mom didn't have to push me hard to go to that first class. I already had a fascination with fabric and designs, even if I was more focused on clothing than quilts. It was a very natural transition, and once I started, I began to see the possibilities of all the different things I could create. That vision has only expanded since then.


What draws you to modern quilting vs. a more traditional style?


I can't say that I am a strictly modern quilting person. I love both. There are some very traditional patterns that I want to do, like a double wedding ring, but I also want to do some art quilts and modern designs. What I really enjoy is the freedom to bend the rules.


I think so many of us are in a similar boat on that one!  :)  Do you have a particular person or style that influences you in your modern quilting ventures?


Amanda Jean Nyberg of  Crazy Mom Quilts.   I find myself falling in love with each quilt she makes. I love her use of white in her quilts, and her color choices are always pleasing to my eye.  And, I am a sucker for Batiks. Hoffman Batiks, especially. I love the way the colors seem alive. The shout, "Bring me home with you!" and it always hurts me when I have to say no.




The batik block of the month was machine quilted. I stitched in the ditch with a walking foot. I changed how I tied off the thread halfway through - I really had no idea of what I was doing! But it has gone through a lot of abuse and still looks great.


Is there a time when you find most of your productivity happens or when great ideas hit you?

I struggle to find time to work on my quilts. My husband is back in school working on a PhD, and I am a stay-at-home mom to six kids. The past few years have not been very productive. But I have so many ideas of what I want to do that I don't know where to start. I get inspiration from quilt shows, blogs, fabric catalogs, and books. I think about how I would change it, the fabrics I would use, and how I would put it together.


That's another interesting point.  So many people of the modern quilting variety are mother's of children who are still living at home, making finding that time so much more of a challenge.  But, since you have so many ideas swimming around in your head, what projects are you hoping to work on next?


 I kinda have a quilt "bucket list." The top one is a double wedding ring King sized quilt made of Batiks. Every time I see one, I can't help but think, "I want to make one!" I also want to make some sort of tumbling blocks quilt, hexagon, storm at sea, spider web sting, miniature, lone star, and something with butterflies and lots of pink and purple for my daughter. The next quilt I will work on will be for my oldest son. It has been in the works for a number of years. The design is based off of Lego Bionicles, one of his favorite toys since he was little.


"Faith, Hope, Peace, Love"


Your list sounds as lengthy as mine!  :)  Now, out of the quilts you've made, which one are you the most proud of?
"Faith, Hope, Peace, Love" is the quilt that makes my heart soar every time I think of it. I made it soon after I found out a long-time friend was battling cancer, and the prognosis was unsure. Each part had a meaning. Green was for Faith. Pink was for Hope. Red was for Love. Blue was for Peace. The quilting in the sashing is actually scriptures for the bible, each focusing on one of the themes. The quilt was a surprise, and I'm happy to say that she loved it and used it. She is now in remission, and I'm so glad I took the time to make it.


What a sweet story!  I'm sure that quilt is treasured dearly.  :)  But, of course, now that we've discussed your greatest quilt...can you tell us about a project that went terribly wrong?


Not other than taking much more time than what I had intended! I have a way of having big dreams, and underestimating the amount of work that will have to go into it.


If you had to choose one must have book, or blog to visit, what would it be?


 I keep learning from Leah Day.  Her tutorials on free motion quilting are amazing. A few years ago I thought I have to mark everything before I quilt it. Now I know that isn't the case at all, and the results can be much more spectacular. Her art quilts are amazing and push me to experiment with my own quilts.


And what would your advice be to someone who is just diving into the world of quilting?


Jump in! The best way to learn is to do it. You will make mistakes, but you will learn and be able to create beautiful works of art (even the simplest quilt is a work of art!) quicker than you know. You will be more critical of your own work than most of the quilters you meet. You see the flaws, but others will see the beauty. You will too if you let yourself.


Thanks, so much, Kristine!  That is some great advice and I so enjoyed learning about your quilting journey!!!  :)  Thanks for sharing with us.


Coming up we will have a reveal of an OKCMQG project that has been in the works for a while.  Can't wait for Erin to share that with us.  :)  


Sew long for now,
-Amanda-









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