Nana wouldn’t ‘need’ a computer

I follow several blogs and Facebook quilting groups and I really learn a lot from these fellow quilty types! I have called myself a “quilter” for at least 20 years now and I still want to learn new things.  If my grandmother, the matriarch quilter in our family, was still living she would simply shake her head at all the new gadgets, sewing machines and patterns.  She and my aunt, who at 70+ is still making quilts, was and still is content with their Gingher scissors and paper templates to piece their tops and quilt by hand.  Not this girl! I want to power sew my tops together and it’s a race with the other quilters on their blogs and Facebook posts!

One tip I learned from a good friend is to take a photo of your work in progress.  She and another quilting friend will text photos of their quilt tops to each other for advice on layout and color placement.  After looking at the fabric, then cutting that fabric and sewing into blocks, then placing on a design wall or laid out on the bed or floor our eyes can fool us that everything is as it was intended.  I sent a text with a photo to my friend because I was going blind with the bright colors in the scrappy Mile-a-Minute blocks I have been working on the past few days.  After she and I decided all was well, I saved the photo to my computer and then used it to help sew everything together.

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This is a great thing to do if you are working on a project and it has to be moved…for example at a quilt retreat or class.  I started piecing a top at a retreat, but was not be able to finish it before we had to go home.  Cell phone picture to the rescue!  Once I got back home I could lay it all out again and check the photo to make sure I got it right!

I can just hear my grandmother calling down from heaven, “I don’t see nothin’ wrong with it! Looks good to me!” I think she would have gotten the biggest kick out of my ‘need’ for a COMPUTER to piece a quilt top! I would gently explain I didn’t ‘need’ the computer to piece a quilt top, but it is very helpful to me as I get up and down several times while piecing a quilt top…ya know…like to do laundry, let the dog out, let the dog back in, fix lunch, run to the bank and post office, write a blog post, take more photos, fondle more fabric, check Facebook and Twitter…YOU get the idea but she would probably roll her eyes with an added “hmph” at all of my distractions!

Note:  She got pretty keen on my rotary cutter when her arthritic hands couldn’t cut fabric.  I was happy to be the one cutting fabric for her!! 🙂

ANYWAY, that is my tip for today! I like to consider it as paying it forward for all the tips and tricks I have learned over the years from my grandmother, aunt and quilting friends across the country.  Use those smart phones and computers, get in those quilting groups both local and cyber,  then jump in with both feet to look at quilting in a new way and get your power sewing going on!

How has an older mentor of yours reacted to these new and now not so new-fangled quilting tools?!

I love and miss you, Nana!

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