As I followed the instructions of the GPS, my car rounded another corner, ascended the driveway and a striking view of Adirondack mountains swept in front of me. I couldn’t help but stare. So often I am rushing from place to place that I forget to stop and drink in what nature has to offer. The sky so blue, the trees standing tall and the mountains strong and powerful. Unveiled for all to see was an inspiring view.
Welcoming me at her front door was my new customer. Like the expansive mountains, her hospitality extended beyond an offer to visit her house, but included a warm cup of coffee on a cold morning. As I stepped into her home, I could feel the attention to detail she brought to her decorating. She had a strong sense of style and made visitors feel instantly comfortable in her space.
Custom quilts bring challenges and fun to my job. Today, the owner showed me a blank wall in her great room and asked for a wall hanging quilt to include the current color scheme and home decor. My stomach rumbled with excitement and nervousness because this was the heart of her home. This main living space hosted special family events, like opening presents on Christmas morning and entertaining guests. In my mind, I thought, “This quilt needed to be perfect”.
A perfect quilt meant incorporating her design style and leading the viewer to enjoy the beauty of nature through the large picture window. Together, the house owner and I looked through samples of quilts and color choices. Working closely with other people allows me to grow as a designer and stretch my imagination to create unique pieces meeting specific needs. That morning, we determined the choice of quilt pattern, color swatches, and fabric patterns she wished to include in her custom quilt. As I exited her home, my to-do list was precise and detailed, just like the pine trees that bordered her backyard and the challenge of a new project was inspiring.
For me, the fun continued. A trip to the local fabric shop, had me touring endless aisles of quilting material for a couple of hours. My list kept me on task, but I drifted through the store loving the softness of the fabric and the eye candy of colors jumping in my direction. Bolts of fabric stacked up on the cutting table as I tediously examined the patterns and color value of my choices. Where will each material fit in my sketch of the star pattern?
With the fabric wrapped up in a bag on the front seat of my car, I felt like a child ready to explode waiting to open presents on Christmas morning. It seemed I couldn’t get home fast enough to grab my rotary cutter and begin cutting strips of fabric. Chuckling, I remember my husband questioning why I buy perfectly fine fabric, just to cut it up and sew it back together again. Well, it’s therapeutic to me.
Methodically, I cut and pieced and seamed and pressed. As I went through the different phases of making this quilt, my mind drifted to what inspires me: people who motivate me to grow beyond my comfort level, experiences that challenge me to expand beyond my current position, and hopes that I can make a difference in another person’s life.
This customer not only shared a tour of her house, but experiences of transitional times in her life. For me, times of transition sometimes left me feeling scattered and unsure of myself like the pieces of fabric that littered my ironing board. However, I followed my pattern and pinned the pieces together, temporarily holding them in place long enough to reach the sewing machine.
The seams helped keep the pieces together, however, any quilter knows you do not lock the ends of the seams, in case you must rip out and correct mistakes. This quilt project was progressing on schedule and few seams, if any, needed to be ripped out.
Hearing about transitional times inspired me to grow and dream. I felt honored to receive a compliment on my quilt work and to be asked to create a similar but unique wall hanging as special as the homeowner. As I crested the driveway to deliver the custom quilt, the awe inspiring view came into sight. After voyaging across the threshold of transition, I felt the height of the trees and the strength of the mountains aid my growth a bit more. Though the winter weather strips away the leaves of the trees and harshly batters the terrain of the mountains, nature awakens again in spring and new growth begins. May springtime growth push Cabin Creek Stitchery to reach new horizons.