Yeah, I’m really a stay-at-home-mom, and this is the story of the rest of my life. I am a wife, a Mama, a writer (which is how this blog title originally came to me!), a quilter, and a crafter. FYI, I'm also a Mormon. I love to do it all -- but it sometimes it gets me into trouble! When I'm having insomnia because I have yardage measurements that just won't quit, I try to be grateful that I'm busy, not bored. :)
Recently, designing quilt patterns is my side job. It’s really a dream come true! I come from a long line of homemakers that do a little of everything. My Mom raised her girls to be ladies (ankles crossed!), and to her that included teaching us to do all sorts of crafty things. I can cook and clean and play piano and crochet – and lately quilting has become my favorite way to pass “my” time!
I started quilting when I was about 6. My Mom would always include me whenever her family had a quilt on, or when the little old ladies were quilting on the old church quilting frames, and I learned the most INTERESTING things from those ladies! They were just sewing & chatting, and my ears were wide open – I wanted to hear everything! I felt pretty grown-up to be considered one of the ladies.
These days, I REALLY love quilting, and my husband knows that a day that’s too busy to sew a little is usually not a great day in my world. I try to balance it all out by not quilting on Sundays – unless it’s a gift :). I love my family so much, and they are definitely first in my life – but I think it’s healthy for a Mama to do something just for her, and for me it’s quilting!
My first quilt was completed when I was 15 or 16. It was a whole-cloth quilt with a teddy bear in the middle and a ruffle edge -- and it was completely hand-quilted. I did the quilt for a donation to the Primary Children’s Hospital cancer ward. I had a little cousin who died of leukemia when she was only five, and I wanted to honor her memory and to help someone else who was maybe going through something similar. It was a darling quilt – I only wish I had a picture of it!
My first quilt as an adult was started as a way to pass the time. I was a receptionist at Sento Corporation, where I met my husband, and for the first few months I was there the HR department would give me files to sort through. Due to a restructure, my job description changed, and soon I found myself with a LOT of free time on my hands – and there’s only so much surfing on the internet I could do. I decided it wouldn’t be inappropriate to bring some sort of a project with me, and my cousin had just found out she was having her first baby, so I thought a baby quilt would be a nice present to give her. Since I was at the front desk of the company, though, I couldn’t do anything by machine, so I hand-pieced everything. After the first block, I decided my cousin could make do with a pillow! But I kept on working on my little quilt in hopes that someday soon I would bring home a little one.
Since I made a quilt for my first baby, I had to make one for my second, too. I kept the sheepies on my husband’s advice, and made a really traditional quilt for him.
When I found out I was having a little girl for my third, I decided to ask for some help. I went to a quilt shop and asked for pink and green – and discovered that fabric came in LINES! I got all my fabric from one line, and while I would now add a LOT more neutral, I’m not sad at how it turned out!
For my fourth baby, I did a really simple quilt. My husband requested more sheepies and I decided to make them really fuzzy with chenille! It was a bear to applique, but held up nicely for the two years he used the quilt. I also discovered minkee and decided my little man needed some dark brown on the back to make this blankie more snuggly.
We weren’t sure we were going to have another baby, and "Are we done?" was a question I asked myself constantly for almost two years. That time in between babies was a period where I really found myself needing a creative outlet I could really count on. I started to quilt, and fell more in love every day! I wanted to join a quilting bee, but couldn’t find one, so I started a little quilt group that meets once a month. It’s been so much fun! And kept me quilting on a more consistent basis. (Little did I know, there are a TON of quilting groups in my area – I just didn't even know where to start looking!)
When I had my fifth baby, I made a quilt I’m super proud of – my butterfly quilt. It uses the butterfly from one of Emily’s patterns and the rest I did from an inspiration quilt I saw in Pottery Barn kids. I love it so much!
Around my baby girl's second birthday, her butterfly quilt was just about ready for retirement – but she (and I!) wasn't ready for a big-girl bed, so I decided to make her another blankie. Her one requirement was that it had minkie on it, and I loved her cute little butterfly so much I decided to make another, different butterfly blankie. It was such a fun project that it only took me about two weeks to assemble, and one night to quilt! It's the perfect toddler size, and I hope to make a tutorial for it soon. It just took 42 charm squares, so it's perfect!
How "Natalie Ever After" Started