Thursday, May 31, 2012

HMQS: Youth Division Best of Show Spotlight

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
–Marianne Williamson

I volunteered as quilt monitor at the Home Machine Quilting Show at the beginning of this month. I entered a quilt in the show and volunteering was the best ticket price to get in to see the quilts, so I took the opportunity. One of the quilts I was most impressed with was shoved way back in the corner, about as far from the door as you could possibly get. As a matter of fact, there was a whole group of quilts back there that should have had a better spot for display. What initially impressed me about this particular quilt was how well all of the corners matched, so I started to read the description card attached to the quilt:

This quilt is made of 238 3" bowtie blocks, each from a different fabric. While I was working on the top, I read about prom in the teen section of the paper (even though I'm not a teen yet) and noticed that the guys wear ties to match the girls' dresses. The different bowtie colors dancing across the quilt made me think that Prom Night would be a perfect name.

When I read even though I'm not a teen yet, I did a double-take and then I realized that I'd accidentally stumbled upon the Youth Division quilts {note to self: send suggestion to HMQS to put the youth division quilts in a better spot next year}. When it dawned on me that the person who made this quilt was under the age of 13 {I later found out she was only 11!!!}, I was all the more impressed with the precision of the work, and the fact that she had pieced and quilted it herself. She definitely deserved her ribbon.

When the quilter's mom stopped by and left a comment on one of my posts about the show asking about my quilt and saying that her daughter entered as well, I e-mailed her back and asked her which quilt was her daughter's. When she told me it was Prom Night I told her how amazed I was with her daughter's work. I asked her if her daughter might be interested in answering a few questions so I could share with you her beautiful quilt and a little bit of insight into it. I hope you will enjoy my interview with Sparkle Jane as much as I did.

Elizabeth: Tell us about the quilt you entered in the HMQS.
Sparkle Jane: Prom Night is a lap sized quilt, made entirely of bowtie blocks. The squares started out at 2" and each {3" finished} block is a different fabric. I finished the quilt in about one month from the time I heard about the show until it had to be submitted. My favorite part of the quilt is probably the pieced binding. It was a last-minute idea, but worked really well.

Elizabeth: How old were you when you first started sewing?
Sparkle Jane: A neighbor, who helped my mom when she was learning to quilt, gave me a box of sewing pins when I was about 18 months old. I would stand on a chair next to the ironing board and stick the board full of pins in colored patterns. At three I would sew buttons all over scraps of fabric. I think Mom still has one or two of those works of art. At six I finished my first quilt.

Elizabeth: What was your first project?
Sparkle Jane: As I said before, at six I made a blue and yellow flannel lap quilt that I still use regularly. Mom cut and I pieced then she made the wrapped binding. I don't really like that type of binding. But for a first quilt it is OK.

Elizabeth: What interested you in getting started?
Sparkle Jane: My mom. I grew up watching her quilt. Also, when I was little I had a box of fabric scraps that I could do anything I wanted with. This helped me get used to being creative with fabric. I made a few hand pieced blankets for cats. Those might be around here somewhere, too.

Elizabeth: Who taught you how to sew?
Sparkle Jane: Once again, my mother. She introduced me to sewing early and kept me interested in it.

Elizabeth: What is your favorite project?
Sparkle Jane: My favorite project is probably a wall hanging that I made when I was eight. It has leaves blowing in the wind that are fused applique. I traced real leaves to get the shapes. Details on the leaves and the "wind" are chain stitched embroidery. It is the only applique project I have done so far, but I have another one planned.

Elizabeth: What project are you working on now?
Sparkle Jane: Which project out of the twenty are you referring to? :biggrin:

Elizabeth: Do you have a list of projects you’d like to do and what are they?
Sparkle Jane: Long list. I am making more baby/lap sized quilts for sale.

Elizabeth: What techniques would you like to learn?
Sparkle Jane: No idea. There are so many options out there.

Elizabeth:How often do you sew (every day, a few times a week, etc.)?
Sparkle Jane: I sew in most of my spare time when I am not playing with friends, harrassing the cats or reading. School, chores, church activity and ballet really eat into my sewing time. But, I do manage to get in some time with fabric almost every day.

Elizabeth: What else would you like to tell us about yourself?
Sparkle Jane: When I grow up I want to be a mom who makes her kids clothes and quilts. If that doesn't exactly work out, I plan to be an engineer or an architect.

So many people have helped me along the way. People have been sending me fabric scraps, helping me learn, giving suggestions, buying quilts and generally being amazing. Thank you to them all.

My new blog is: Sparkle Jane Please consider visiting.

Thanks for inviting me to be a guest on your blog.

Sparkle Jane.

It was really fun to have you Sparkle Jane! Thank you for taking time to answer my questions!

You can see the other neat projects Sparkle Jane has been working on at her blog, and you can see where she gets her talent at Wedding Dress Blue, which is her mom's blog. You can read about their experience at the HMQS here.


Impera Magna said...

Absolutely amazing... Sparkle Jane's work is incredible and made even more so by her skill and talent at such a young age!

Thanks for sharing this interview with Sparkle Jane and all the fabulous examples of her work!

Anonymous said...

That's great! I actually found Sparkle Jane through her mom's blog, so I was excited to see her here. What a talented girl.

Deanna said...

Yes, in the not-at-all-biased opinion of her mother, that Sparkle Jane is an amazing young woman. How lucky I am!

Deanna said...

Also, just because we must have put a typo in the interview, the squares started out at 2", the blocks finished at 3".

Heather said...

Such a wonderful interview. Thanks for hosting her.

Anonymous said...

I'm the proud owner of several Sparkle Jane quilts, and her work is wonderful in its accuracy. She is also a compassionate, kind young woman growing up with great values. I love the spotlight interview and seeing some of her early projects in the pictures!

Unknown said...

What an inspiring girl, such a cool interview!

Barb said...

This young lady and her mom are so amazing....thanks for the interview...

Fran said...

Fabulous interview of a very special young lady. I saw a few of her quilts when I visited cq4fun a couple of months ago and they are outstanding!

whimsyfox said...

Wow that is just so awesome! Congrats on the ribbon Sparkle Jane!