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I’m a very hands on crafter…I want to do every step of the process with my own two hands. I take pride in knowing that when I create something, it is 100% me.

I have been a fibre artist my entire life. I think back to what influenced me to love creating, since no one in my immediate family was passionate about handwork,,,,it must have been my favourite book as a child that stoked the flames of creativity in my mind – Tell Me Cat by Ellen Fisher. A book full of cat poems (what could be better than that!??!), each poem accompanied by the most glorious embroidered scenes to go along with the photos of real cats. I’ve had this book since I was a toddler, and I’ve been hooked ever since 🙂

Copyright 1967
Just look at that mouse’s shadow 🙂

I’m a very hands on crafter…I want to do every step of the process with my own two hands. I take pride in knowing that when I create something, it is 100% me.

When I started quilting, I did everything on my domestic sewing machine. This prompted me to buy a larger throat machine (Husqvarna Viking Sapphire 835), and I would FMQ all my quilts on that – loops and swirls all the way, baby! My two older grandkids each received a twin sized quilt on their 6th birthday – sharks for Trent and kitties for Kylee, both FMQ with, you guessed it, loops and swirls!

Old joints are starting to catch up to me and I’m more and more disliking the process of crawling around on the floor to pin baste my quilts. A longarm machine purchase was always in the back of my mind, but the only way I could justify the expense was to do it as a business, and we already had a successful homebased (crafty!) business (www.sunsetstudios.ca). I didn’t need or want to increase my workload.

Grandchild #3 comes along, and although T & K had to wait until they were 6 to get their first quilt, I decided to make Rosalee a baby quilt. I was able to find a longarm owner who was willing to let me use her machine for the afternoon, so I could longarm the baby quilt – the crafting community is full of such wonderful people!

No crawling around on the floor pin basting! No bringing it all outside for spray basting! No more feeling constrained to only loops and swirls. As a quilter, I felt REBORN!

When brother Ryan and *new* sister-in-law Lea Ann decided to cement their 20 year relationship with a spur of the moment marriage last June, wedding quilt piecing began! Their oversized king quilt (125″ x 125″) was the deciding factor in making the jump into longarm ownership. I could not find a longarmer with a quilting frame large enough to accommodate this quilt that I could rent time on (because remember, it’s all or nothing with me)…..so I will be that longarmer!

After a lot of research and discussion, we decided to go with a 14′ Gammill Statler machine. Both Peter and I have experience working with CAD based and computer graphics software, so the learning curve should not be too steep. Reorganization of the entire house is now underway – Sunset Studios is still active and taking up the room that will become the longarm quilting studio. There is a LOT of stuff that needs to find a new place to live. We are living real life ‘Tetris’ right now 😛

We hope to be ready for delivery of the machine by July and then we will hit the ground running!