Welcome to the Quilting Board!
I find it sad when people give up on groups early on. It does take a lot to get to know one another. I belonged to one guild for three years and didn't know many people, but I enjoyed the meetings and was busy with my life. I moved and joined a guild and in this one I have been on committees and an officer and I know more people but that doesn't really matter to me. I enjoy the meetings and the speakers just like in the old guild. What is different here is that the guild really pushes new people to join a small group (bee) or make a new one and those women have become my good friends. Now when someone is visiting the guild I will try and say hello and be friendly BUT I think new people can feel left out because I am trying to catch up with people I know well and care deeply about and I haven't seen them for a month or two and we have 15 mins to socialize before the meeting starts. What I am trying to convey is that a stranger might misunderstand my limited socialization with the new people that show up. I don't intend to make anyone unwelcome.
Like most things....persistence pays off. So just hang in there and I guess acceptance will come. If it doesn't, well try another group. I love it when young people take an interest in my "passions" (quilting, gardening, animals and nature). I am making a quilt for my newest DIL, and was apologising for dragging my feet with it. I told her, I was procrastinating over the basting.....She and my other DIL and another girl (who is definitely gunning for DIL status. wanted to know what this basting thing was. So off to the guest room we went and they got a quick lesson in basting.....should have got them all "needled" up and I might have got it done quicker. Who knows I might have lit a spark.
Anyway, I digress, I'm sorry you feel your age is a problem. Keep coming here, you will always be welcomed.
Okay! It's not just in quilting that women (human beings) are stand-offish! My first full-time job after high school was in an office in my home state. As a student, I had courses in shorthand, accounting, business communications, etc. I was hired as a "general flunky" (no offense intended, but I did a little bit of everything). Then, just three months after I was hired, the secretary to the VP of Sales became pregnant and was retiring. ONLY BECAUSE I could take shorthand, I was promoted to that position! Was I ready for it? NO, a thousand times NO! But, I did the job. The other women in the office were so jealous that vicious things were done. I had purchased a new coat -- one (or more) of these women went into the lockers just outside the office door and cut some of the buttons off my new coat. Then, the snide remarks began, my lunch was taken. Eventually, the pressure on me became so great that I developed physical symptoms (without any physical problem), but the pain was no less real. When my doctor told me what was happening, I became very angry. I went to the office where I worked and at the very green age of 18, I told the office manager that either she got these women off my back or I wouldn't be around much longer. The office manger was horrified at the things these women had done. Jealousy is a green monster! Suffice it to say, the office manager put a stop to the shenanigans and I continued to work until I was 5 months pregnant with my son.
Now, as to quilting, I am a "rank amateur"! I made a Sunbonnet Sue applique quilt about 10-12 years ago and, at the risk of sounding conceited, I did a good job. I have made one queen-sized bed quilt, all satin stitch embroidery on whole cloth.
The ladies on this board, both young and more seasoned have all welcomed me with proverbial open arms which I appreciate very much. I have sewn all my life, my grandmother quilted, and I just decided that I very much admired her work. I am 68 years old but you have been quilting a lot longer than me. I'll never win a blue ribbon -- not sure I would ever try to!
You are obviously very talented and in my book, you are more than welcome. I have been the recipient of much guidance and inspiration on this Board. I hope you will continue to participate here -- I have a hunch you could teach this old "dog" some new tricks!
Keep on Quiltin'
I find some places no matter what age you are.. there are clic's its hard to infiltrate that close knit group. Some are truly more open and maybe starting a group of your own.. would be interesting to hear if you got a bunch of young quilters would you take a newbie old quilter into your fold? just a thought.. you know the music tastes are not the same, the chatter is surley not the same.. just might be exactly what your experiencing. I love people of all ages. I never count young people out you out distance me in learning new things all the time. Your vibrant and joyful to have.. so don't count all older people by a few who gave you a bad taste in your mouth. we are all not like that.
Here today... why what a lucky bunch we are.