Tuesday, June 19, 2012

June Quilter of the Month - Jennifer Rawe

We're bringing back quilter of the Month starting now.  I hope everyone enjoys getting to know some of your favorite IMQG members thru this feature.  Up first is my super awesome cool roommate from the March Sleepover Retreat - Jennifer Rawe .  I must admit I shared a room with this lady and up until that point I barely knew her name and she and I stayed up past two talking about everything and anything and I determined she was pretty sweet.  So here's a little more about Jennifer...

Name, blog/etsy/flickr shop, hometown, current location

Jennifer Rawe
I only have one post on my blog from four years ago...rather sad...so I won't share that blog name.  I keep saying that I'll start a flickr or etsy shop but it hasn't been a priority so I haven't gotten around to it yet.
Crown Point, IN is where I lived the longest growing up (age 10-18) but before that I lived in TX, NC, and CT.
Now I live in a fabulous 60's ranch near 86th and Spring Mill on the north side of Indianapolis.

What sewing machine do you use? Does it have a name? Do you like it?

Janome Memory Craft 6600 
After sewing on my mom's 1970 Kenmore for three frustrating years, my mom gave me her two year old Janome and bought herself the newer model.  I was SO excited to have a machine that actually worked!
It has way more bells and whistles than I've ever figured out.
I've named every car I've ever driven but for some reason I've never named my sewing machine.  Maybe we haven't bonded enough yet...I can be a bit neglectful of it sometimes.  I can tell you that she's a she.

Where do you sew? What’s your space look like?

A bit of a mess (see photos) is what it is....no, we'll call it a "work in progress".
In an ideal world I'd have my own room with a closet full and organized, a table for cutting, and a table for sewing and plenty of open space and natural light...and maybe even a small space for my daughters to craft along beside me.  
Coming back to reality, my sewing room is currently combined with our home office.  The closet is organized but half is in the room and half is in the hall closet...partly because I'm a fabric hoarder.  Right now all of our office file boxes are in the hall for my husband to sort and a new IKEA Expedit bookshelf and white board will find a home.  Then we can reorganize everything again...until I buy more fabric!

What makes you a modern quilter?

The fabrics I choose and the patterns I gravitate towards, I guess.  I'm a sucker for Heather Ross and Aneela Hooey designs as well as almost anything Kokka and Lotta Jansdotter.  I either love plain and simple or silly and fun.

Tell me about your first quilting experience.

I was four months pregnant with my first child and my mom wanted to take me to a mother/daughter quilt camp at Camp Tecumseh YMCA in Brookston, IN.  I picked out fabrics, she helped me pick out a pattern, and all weekend long she taught me how to measure, cut, sew, and create a quilt.  I had such a blast!  

What’s your dream machine?

I have a pretty swank machine that I barely understand so I don't really have anything on my wish list right now. 

What is your favorite part of making a quilt?

Picking out the fabrics, of course!  Although that's my downfall...I love the fabric picking process so much that I do more of that than the actual sewing sometimes. 

What is your most dreaded part of making a quilt?

It's a tie...
1. Sandwiching the front and back to the batting and then pinning it all in place before quilting it.  I don't like the smell of the spray adhesive and it's a pain to find a clean, large space outdoors to put it all together.  I welcome any suggestions to make it easier!
2. Cutting my own bias binding.  I can never remember how to fold the fabric just right to get those strips...plus, I don't like ironing it in half.  I just discovered the Moda solid bias binding in an array of lovely shades at The French Seam!  Lovely and easy!
Do you have any great tips and tricks you want to share?
I'm always asking everyone else if they have any tips and tricks!  After six years of sewing off and on, I still feel like a newbie.

Where are your favorite brick and mortar quilt shops?

The French Seam!!!!  I feel like I'm there a whole lot!  I can't get enough of it.  It's in a lovely shop near 82nd and Dean on the north side of Indianapolis.

What are your favorite online fabric shops?

Now that I have The French Seam, I never shop online. Before the existence of The French Seam, I loved Sew Mama Sew, Purl Soho, and Pink Chalk Fabrics.

What time of day do you usually sew? Do you listen to music, or watch TV?

I sew after 9pm in a room next to my youngest daughter's bedroom so I don't have any sounds going other than the whir of my sewing machine... trying not to surpass the whir of the fan in her room.

Do you have any sewing or quilting injuries?

Thankfully none so far although being a mom comes in handy because just this weekend at quilt camp with my mom, another quilter cut her finger with a rotary cutter and I had three bandaids at the ready!

What are your favorite crafty blogs and/or Etsy shops?

Oh, what a question!  I have so many!  I bookmark everything and if it weren't for the fear of being sucked into a time warp by pinning, I would have a full set of pin boards!
Craft blogs... Wee Wonderfuls, Alabama Chanin, Purl Bee, Heather Ross, The Small Object, Sally J Shim, Design Sponge, MADE
Etsy shops... mikodesign, bunnywithatoolbelt, StudioMo, emilliner, letterform

What's your favorite kona cotton color?

I don't really have a favorite but the K001-200 POND color stood out to me for some reason as I was looking at the latest color card. 

What do you love most about IMQG?

The people!!!  These women are so supportive and fantastically fun! 

Do you sew/make other things besides quilts?

I've sewn dolls, stuffed animals, bibs, blankies, bunting, scarves, headbands, toys, purses (the easy ones!), and clothes for my girls.  I've knitted blankets and scarves.  What I'm most excited about now is learning how to sew clothes for myself!  I just finished a series class at The French Seam on how to sew a dress shirt. 

What's your favorite project you've completed?

Hmmm.  Favorite project...that I've completed.  That's the tough part.  I have so many projects that are close to completion but I'm prone to distractions like new fabric lines or something cool I found on a blog that I have to try that instant.  Usually my favorite project is whatever I happen to be currently working on...which keeps me working on it until I choose a new favorite!
I sewed three pairs of felt gnomes from the Wee Wonderfuls pattern that turned out looking super-awesome and won a blue ribbon in my home county's fair. They're my favorite holiday decoration...can gnomes only be associated with Christmas?  Maybe I should put them out all year long.

Thanks so much for being our Quilter this month Jen!  If you run into Jen around the city or at meetings be sure to say hi and remind her that sandwiching and pinning is called basting ;)

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