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Bonnie's Quilting History  |  Bonnie's Quilting Philosophy



This photo was taken in Nicaragua (summer 2005) on a mission trip with my
Lakeshore Church family. 

Hi!  My name is Bonnie Evans and I hope you enjoy your visit to my site!

My "Nary a Cross Word" quilt that I made for myself...began my present quilting passion, and... "Joyful Noise," a ministry.

Quilts make the most wonderful gifts, wrapping the recipient with the love of the giver every time it's used. 

Thanks again for stopping by! Bonnie

Bonnie's Quilting History

Many years ago, probably in the early 1980's, I made my first quilts.  I had been sewing for many years, Mama having taught me early how to make little doll clothes.  I sewed many of my own clothes for years, including my wedding dress, as well as baby outfits for my son, Michael, and shirts for my husband, but it was long after that when I decided to make a quilt. 

"Back then," one had to make cardboard templates for quilt pieces, and I can remember long hours on my knees, pencil-marking my pieces, then cutting each, one by one, with my scissors.  I made a quilt for my Daddy, a log-cabin in shades of blue, which he must have loved because it stayed on his bed for many years.  After he died, Mama gave me his quilt, but, alas, it was lost in our house fire in August of 2000.  I also made an Ohio Star bed quilt and window-hanging for Michael and a string quilt, lap sized, for my Mama...all of which were probably done by the same quilt-as-you-go method which I'd learned about in a women's magazine (I still have those clippings!)  I didn't hand-quilt back then, and generally don't now.  I was never enamored with the thought of that many hand stitches in an item the size of a quilt!

My next attempt at quilting came nearly 20 years later, after the introduction of such wonderful helps as rotary cutters, cutting mats, and heavy duty rulers and templates.  I had also by then learned about "tying" quilts, a quick method used primarily to anchor the battings of "utility" quilts, those made simply to keep the family from freezing at night, and often made with large fabric pieces, quick to make up.  These didn't have to be pretty, but necessarily had to be useful.  It eventually occurred to me that perhaps a quilt should be both, beautiful and useful!

I made "The Cook Siblings," the first attempt in my second round of quilting, on an old second-hand sewing machine that sounded like a boiler factory.  Despite the machine, the quilt somehow got done, each of its 9 featured squares with photos of my grandfather and his 8 siblings, and it was given away at our Cook family reunion as a door prize.  My "Nary a Cross Word" quilt that I made for myself then began my present quilting passion, and with "Joyful Noise," a ministry.

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Bonnie's Quilting Philosophy

My "philosophy" of quilting is that, though "art" quilts, those made simply to be beautiful and not to be touched, may be as necessary to the eye as a lovely rose or a painting, there is also a need for quilts in the everyday life, quilts that can be sat on for play time, eaten on top of for picnics, and dragged about the house, car and sports stadiums without fear of ruining them or of their coming apart.  The classic quilting seam is 1/4" (to allow for less bulk while hand quilting) but this is simply not enough to allow for hard daily use.  I make all my quilts with 1/2" seams, and while I occasionally do a little machine quilting (and even more rarely, a little by hand), nearly all my quilts are "tied" with embroidery cotton or yarn.  This allows much more rugged use.  Most all my quilts, too, are made of 100% cotton, unless the recipient requests a color or pattern I can't find in cotton, and I use polyester batting, which retains its wonderful fluffiness and warmth even with heavy use and with repeated washings.

A finished quilt is always a surprise...even though you know the colors and pattern of the fabrics you've chosen and the design of the quilt block and the placement of them, you never really know what it's going to look like until you're just about finished.  I've made more than one that I regretted my fabric choices as I began, but knew after putting together a couple of squares that they were right after all.  I guess God has gifted me with an eye for color and pattern, and so far, I've not made a quilt I didn't love when it was finished. 

Quilts make the most wonderful gifts, wrapping the recipient with the love of the giver every time it's used. 

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