I've been making things with my hands since I was big enough to grab things.
From the Friendship Bracelet Club I founded in 1st grade; to my first business-- a paper snowflake stand in my front yard; to my dream catcher stage in 6th grade (the evidence of this is still all over my parents home).
I've always had an unquenchable urge to make things.
In 8th grade, I decided I wanted to learn to sew. I loved pajama pants with crazy fabric and just learned that pajama pants are something you could actually make yourself pretty easily-- it was such a novel idea at the time, that I could actually make this thing instead of buy it.
So I asked my grandmother if she would teach me to sew. She was raised in an age where almost all women learned to sew, and sewed all of my mother's dresses and Halloween costumes. But when "ready-made" clothes became cheaper than sewing your own, she retired her Singer to pants-hemming duty.
She was, of course, delighted to teach her granddaughter what she knew, so she pulled out that old Singer and her tins of loose, mixed up needles and bobbin thread, and taught me about seam allowances, and how to not sew through my fingers.
I made those pajama pants and wore them proudly on PJ Day at school.
A whole world of possibilities had opened up before me. I could not only choose what I wanted to make, but I got to choose the exact fabric and color it was made out of! Why had no-one told me about this before!?
I did lots of sewing in middle school and high school, but it wasn't until college that I first started quilting.
I was studying Elementary Education, and in my Children's Literature class, we were assigned to create a timeline of children's literature. For some reason that I still cannot remember, I decided I wanted to make a quilted timeline of children literature!
So I pulled out my little Janome that my parents gave me the Christmas before, and the fabric bundle that was in my stocking. I made a simple patchwork background, and printed book covers on iron-on sheets then ironed them onto white fabric. I used a spool of ribbon I had to connect the book covers into a timeline.
I was up until 2 AM the night before the project was due trying to finish it, and trying to figure out how the heck to do binding! My mother was so wonderful and even drove to my campus and stayed with me in my dorm to help me finish it. (Thanks again, mom!)
At 10 AM I showed up to class with a finished quilt and held it up proudly when it came my turn to present.
It was way above-and-beyond what I needed to do for the project (and I'm sure all the students who made their timelines out of poster board were super annoyed at me), but I got a 100(!), and this was the start of a journey that brought me to your screen today!
Tell me about your first quilt! Who did you make it for? What made you decide you wanted to make a quilt in the first place?