It’s National Quilting Month, which got me thinking about, well, quilting and why I quilt. While there may be more different reasons we quilt than one little blog post can handle, let’s take a look at some. Here are ten reasons why I think quilters quilt!
1. To Create
It’s that internal need, conscious or unconscious, to exercise the right side of our brains and get creative. This doesn’t mean you’re creating all your own patterns; it simply means that the process of picking a pattern and fabrics, imagining the result and making it happen. This is especially true for quilters who spend their day using the other side of their brain.
Bottom line: quilting is an art form for all of us. If you pick up a needle and thread, you are an artist! Every fabric choice, every pattern adjustment and every quilting choice is an expression of your artistic voice. Your style of quilting doesn't matter - modern, traditional, abstract, collage - all are a form of artistic expression.
2. Stress Relief
Let’s face it: sometimes, life can be rough and for many, quilting is a way to take a break from that and unwind with sewing. What does this look like? It’s different for every quilter: from a mom who needs a break from the madness to someone with a high stress “day job” or someone recovering from a traumatic event, quilting can be a temporary and welcome respite.
3. Love of Fabric
I started quilting because I love fabric and wanted a way to showcase and enjoy all those fun fabrics that I kept collecting. From favorite colors to celebrating holidays and seasons, there’s a world of amazing fabrics out there looking for good homes, right?
4. Sharing Love
Quilters share their love by making and sharing quilts. From wedding quilts to baby quilts, quilters enjoy conveying their talents. Many got their start in quilting to make a quilt for their baby or grandbaby. For a quilter, gifting a quilt is like wrapping the recipient in a giant hug that will last for years to come.
5. Love of Sewing
When you love to sew, the love doesn’t end when your children outgrow wanting to wear clothes you made or homemade Halloween costumes. Quilting opens the door to a way to keep sewing that just can’t be outgrown.
6. Celebrating the Seasons
Quilts, wall hangings, table runners and more are wonderful way to celebrate the seasons of the year and holidays. They also give quilters the chance to revel in seasonal designs and fabrics - talk about a win/win situation!
7. Challenging Yourself
From learning a new skill to entering quilts for judging, quilting can be a great way to keep learning new things. Why? Why not?! Maybe your grandmother quilted and you always wanted to learn. Maybe you’ve made rag quilts for everyone in the family and you want to take on a new kind of project. Maybe you’ve got a certain quilt on your bucket list. Learning new things keeps us young!
8. Social Activity
Quilting can be a solo sport or a social activity! Guilds can provide new friends and a quilting support group for quilters. The same can be said for open sew days and classes at your favorite local quilt shop, too. The last few years' events may have left many of us looking for new and different ways to connect with others, and quilting is one great way to do so.
9. Giving Back
Quilters are an overwhelmingly generous group. From banding together to provide masks and medical gear to providing quilts for those needing a little comfort, quilters jump into such activities with both feet, making the world just a little bit better.
10. Connecting to the Past
Even if you don’t come from a long line of quilters, chances are that you do have some early ancestors who made quilts, especially since the rich history of quilts goes back generations and spans the globe. For those who enjoy history, quilting is a great way to learn about and connect with the past.
Why I Quilt
Can all the reasons above apply? Well, sure! I’ve loved sewing ever since I can remember. While I don’t come from a long line of quilters or sewists, I’ve always been drawn to anything involving stitching. I recently discovered my first childhood attempt at a quilt for my dolls and my Camp Fire Girl Handbook, where I chose a Camp Fire name that meant “to sew” (and yes, when I found that book and name, I did burst into tears). Sewing has always been my happy place!
My girls have long outgrown the desire for me to make them clothes and now, they enjoy making costumes for their own children, so quilting keeps me sewing.
My grandson with the Husker football quilt he requested
I love fabric, pure and simple, and quilting gives that love an outlet for that love, along with a way to adorn my home in seasonal decor and wrap my family and friends in my love.
Above all, I need creative outlets in my life, and I’m blessed to have them in both my professional and personal life! Quilting is the way my inner creative voice can really let loose and sing.
As AccuQuilt’s Creativity Expert, I get the chance to work on creating livestream events, videos, blog posts, GO! Dies, patterns and more. Helping others quilt and create just may be the most fun of all! I love that AccuQuilt makes it possible for quilters to keep quilting with easy and perfect cutting, letting them express the creativity in them and that I get to be a part of that process.
So, let’s hear it for National Quilting Month – a celebration of creators, of artists! I hope you’ll share your comments on why you quilt with us below.
Happy quilting, everyone!