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Thread: Gentlemen, would you tell us what you think developed your interest in sewing?

  1. #1
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    I hope this topic doesn't get me on anyone's bad side. I am pleased and impressed that men sew. My husband knows crochet from watching his mother and grandmother crochet for so many years, though he didn't practice doing it. He has respect and admiration for it.
    I always wanted Daddy to teach me how to do the things he did under the hood of the cars. Mother wouldn't let me go out there when he was working on cars. She said I would get hurt when he threw the wrenches and he used those words I wasn't supposed to hear. I could have been a topnotch mechanic. He had so much to teach me that I never got to learn and I regret it to this day.
    I would enjoy your stories if you want to share them. Does your wife sew as well?

  2. #2
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    boy, i wrote a whole page and lost it...here goes again...

    i'm not a man, but i've taught a few to quilt...started with my nephew (then 20)he was laid off, and hanging out with me...i was working on a stained glass block...he was intrigued...within a couple days he decided he wanted to try it himself...went to the computer found a coloring book page of a raccoon, enlarged it, printed it and created this AWESOME block, then he grew his (zoo) with a duck, bunny, turtle...was on a roll...
    then my oldest son hits the scene...never to be outdone by his cousin...he jumped in (in a total different direction) created some pretty cool blocks then decided his interest is more in painting/dying fabrics...enter the youngest son(about 14 at the time) and he not to ever be outdone by the older two designed himself an pretty cool quilt...
    they are all 3 very creative...and over the years have pushed my to find new techniques and figure out how to do things...
    like curved piecing...i had not done any...one day Jess(the nephew) comes to me with a block going wrong..."aunt colleen, how does this work...its not working..." so, i had to do some research and do some practicing then teach all 3 guys how to do curves...then my son shows up with a problem...card trick...partial seams....back to the computer....they push me...they are FABULOUS at picking out colors/putting together collections...i always turn to one of them if i['m trying to put together a color run...they can without even thought pulll out the fab that should not be there and put in what works... and all 3 of them have in turn taught their girlfriends how to sew :)

  3. #3
    Super Member Quilter7x's Avatar
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    What a great story Colleen! And what a wonderful lady you are for teaching them.

    Dorothy, I'm glad you asked this question. The answers are going to be fun!

  4. #4
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    Dsb, don't worry about getting on the guys bad side on here. They won't be insulted that you asked what got them sewing. I'm sure you will get some good answers.

  5. #5
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Funny enough, my son has been the one even remotely interested in my projects. When he was a little boy, he used to take pieces of my fabric to bed with him to snuggle with. When I brought home my new machine he was the one that wanted to play with it and the new motorized sewing table. I had to actually drag him off of it as he was getting a tad rough with it... I don't know if he'll actually sew one day, but between him and my daughter, he's got more of an interest.

  6. #6
    Super Member Eddie's Avatar
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    I'll share my story and hope it doesn't bore anyone to tears. :) I started quilting about a year ago now and there was an event that actually sparked me to get into it. I'm involved in a local historic preservation group in my town, and I'm president of the board that oversees the preservation of the oldest home in town (built in 1852). We have several open houses each year at the historic park that has this house in it and we do a quilt exhibit each May. So during last year's exhibit I was walking around looking at all the quilts and thinking to myself "I bet I could do this." I remember looking at the quilts and thinking over them in terms of construction, i.e., looking at each block and thinking how they came together in a logical way. So after the exhibit I went to the local bookstore and bought a couple of quilting magazines, went to Wal-Mart and bought some fabric, went to the local sewing machine dealer and bought a machine. And made my first quilt. :D

    Looking back now, I think I was drawn to quilting as simply another art form that allows me an avenue to create. I have an art background, having taken lessons in painting from a couple of different teachers. I've won honors in several competitions, so having the art background coming into quilting helps a lot I think in being able to choose colors of fabrics that will play well together.

    I haven't painted in years (probably 10 or more now), because while I had all the awards and praise from people telling me that I was good, I still had to really work at it to make a painting that I was even remotely satisfied with. For every one painting I completed, I probably trashed 10 others. I think a lot of that was me being overly self-critical of my work, though. But with quilting, it's a pretty different story - maybe I've simply matured beyond caring so much about the perfectionism, I don't know. But I see it as enjoyable, rather than work.

    So, there it is. :D

  7. #7
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    Wow Eddie. Wonderful story. I have to say though my mouth dropped when you said you'd only been quilting a year. You do such amazing work I thought you'd quilted for many, many years. Hey guys I'm looking forward to hearing your stories.

  8. #8
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    Eddie you and I are a lot alike!!

    How I got into this was really funny in a way.......

    I was restoring the home I am in now and found an old Singer 27 in the attic. I played with it for a second and made a mental note about it being up there. A couple of years ago I was thinking about it so I ran up in the attic and pulled the machine down to look at how it worked and see if I could get it functioning again. The treadle is down in my bedroom with a slab of marble sitting on it for my wifes make up table. So I had no way of powering it.....yet!! I found the NeedleBar and started learning about Vintage sewing machines. Since I love history and mechanics it was destiny that I would get into collecting sewing machines.

    Well I bought a complete treadle and refinished it and slipped my machine I had fixed up into it and I was ready to go. I wanted to make something with it but I didnt know how to sew.

    Like Eddie I was looking around the fabric store and was looking at a quilt and was figuring out how the made it. I thought to myself "that should be easy enough" and I bought some fabric and thread and headed home. I didnt have a pattern or books or anything like that I just thought I would start cutting and go from there. I made a 9 patch with a big sashing and border for a lap quilt for my wife, all on a treadle.

    After I was finished making her quilt I was hooked!!

    Billy

    The quilt that started it all!!
    Name:  Attachment-56203.jpe
Views: 24
Size:  56.1 KB

  9. #9
    Senior Member miholmes's Avatar
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    Well I don't have a very exciting story, but here it is.

    When I was about 8 or 9 my family loaded up the old Thunderbird filled with Crystal Gayle 8-tracks and drove from Iowa to North Carolina where my grandmother lived.

    She quilted and had a large quilt frame that was weighted in the living room. It was attached to something that allowed it to be raised and lowered.

    I just remember watching her and my mother sitting around the living room in the evening and quilting. They would sit there for hours talking and quilting and I would play under the quilt.

    Anyway I was never SUPER interested in it at that time, I used to help them occasionally when I was REALLY bored, but there was a whole mountain to explore so I normally only quilted alittle on the days it rained or when my mother would call me in for the night, and I didn't want to go to bed.

    We spent the entire summer there, and then drove back to Iowa. We didn't really see my grandmother that much because of the distance, but she would send quilts to us in the mail, one of them I remember was a Snoopy quilt she made for me.

    I've always liked quilts, there something comforting and "folksey" about them. Wrapping up in them on a cold winter's day or listening to the rain fall outside your window. They have always seemed to be a source of comfort for me.

    I recently got married and recieved an Amish quilt as a wedding gift, it was SPECTACULAR...there was a small card that came with it that had the woman's name on it and said 1 woman, 1 needle. And I thought....WOW....that was a lot of hardwork and hours put into making that quilt.

    I volunteer for an animal rescue and thought, wouldn't it be GREAT if I could make some "Critter Quilts" for people to buy at the farmers market in the summer? Basically a quilted dog mat?

    So I started gathering supplies and set out to do that for my first project. However a friend of mine had a baby, so my first quilt ever was a baby quilt. THEN I made a twin quilt to auction for our dog rescue, then another quilt...I have YET to make a critter quilt. But it's still on my list.

    Quilting just relaxes me, there is something to be said when you are working in front of you machine and you kinda of hit a rhythem, where it's just you and the machine, and your only worry is your 1/4 inch seam allowance. :)

    Well anyway, that's why I started quilting and how I feel about it.

  10. #10
    Moderator sharon b's Avatar
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    Thanks for starting this thread , it is fascinating to read what got the guys hooked :lol:

  11. #11
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    Nice story, Michael, but you really look too young for 8-tracks!!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckcowl
    boy, i wrote a whole page and lost it...here goes again...

    i'm not a man, but i've taught a few to quilt...started with my nephew (then 20)he was laid off, and hanging out with me...i was working on a stained glass block...he was intrigued...within a couple days he decided he wanted to try it himself...went to the computer found a coloring book page of a raccoon, enlarged it, printed it and created this AWESOME block, then he grew his (zoo) with a duck, bunny, turtle...was on a roll...
    then my oldest son hits the scene...never to be outdone by his cousin...he jumped in (in a total different direction) created some pretty cool blocks then decided his interest is more in painting/dying fabrics...enter the youngest son(about 14 at the time) and he not to ever be outdone by the older two designed himself an pretty cool quilt...
    they are all 3 very creative...and over the years have pushed my to find new techniques and figure out how to do things...
    like curved piecing...i had not done any...one day Jess(the nephew) comes to me with a block going wrong..."aunt colleen, how does this work...its not working..." so, i had to do some research and do some practicing then teach all 3 guys how to do curves...then my son shows up with a problem...card trick...partial seams....back to the computer....they push me...they are FABULOUS at picking out colors/putting together collections...i always turn to one of them if i['m trying to put together a color run...they can without even thought pulll out the fab that should not be there and put in what works... and all 3 of them have in turn taught their girlfriends how to sew :)
    Ohh,, I love it. Hugs./Dorothy

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quilting D
    Wow Eddie. Wonderful story. I have to say though my mouth dropped when you said you'd only been quilting a year. You do such amazing work I thought you'd quilted for many, many years. Hey guys I'm looking forward to hearing your stories.
    I agree. I like your story. So far I see the designer and architect coming out in the stories I have read this far. I really like it.
    I want to comment on each one but there will be too much me on the post, this is so good. Thank you so much. I am really enjoying it.

  14. #14
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    Wow, I love these stories. Just shows how much more we women and men are alike than different. It's nice to see it!

    More stories!!

  15. #15
    Super Member chewboo's Avatar
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    love to see the stories guys it is always interesting how any of us got into quilting as it was starting to become a lost art

  16. #16
    Super Member Tiffany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa_wanna_b_quilter
    Nice story, Michael, but you really look too young for 8-tracks!!
    I agree completely!

    Thank you for sharing your stories. I haven't found any of them boring. I have a two year old grandson and I'm looking forward to turning him into a quilter, which should horrify my manly son-in-law. :lol: Any insight into how to better instill a lifelong quilting addiction is always welcome!

  17. #17
    Super Member ranger's Avatar
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    Wonderful stories. Thanks for sharing them. I like reading about how others got the quilting 'bug'.

  18. #18
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    I think its great guys quilt!!! My DH absolutely loves quilts. His mother use to quilt. Could not get him to quilt though, he doesn't have enough patience for it, but he definitely appreciates it!!

  19. #19
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    great stories,

  20. #20
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    A lady in my guild churns out the most wonderful pieced quilts. Her hubby cuts and she sews, they make a great team. I keep trying to get my hubby to do that , but no luck with that yet.

  21. #21
    Super Member Oklahoma Suzie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quilter7x
    What a great story Colleen! And what a wonderful lady you are for teaching them.

    Dorothy, I'm glad you asked this question. The answers are going to be fun!
    yeah, thanks for asking.

  22. #22
    Super Member Glenn's Avatar
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    I lived with my grandmother for several years. She taught me to sew by mending my play clothes. You know sew buttons and such. She said I should learn this so I could take care of myself. She also taught me to knit and crochet. I would have rather been playing ball outside!!! LOL We made a quilt together and I have beeen sewing and quilting ever since about 6 years old. I am now 63. I have her old treadle singer and all her sewing stuff, including some unusual pin cushions. I use all of it still today. I piece with the singer and quilt by hand. I am retired army officer and made all my wife's formal dresses for all the balls we attended. When I get a new digital camera I will post pictures. Glenn from Huntsville :lol:

  23. #23
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    I loved reading this thread! Glad to see there are men in this group, no matter what motivated them to learn! We're all quite different in the way we go about it, but seems like we all feel the same about quilts!

  24. #24
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    These stories were all heartwarming. Thank-you for sharing.

  25. #25
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    Well, my story . . .

    We had to make money go farther than far when I was growing up. Mother didn't make all our clothes but made a fair portion. My brother, sister and I learned to do everything we needed to take care of the basics; sister to fix a car and my brother and I to use the sewing machine. Everybody planted the garden, fixed things that broke, etc.

    I also have an art background which my father supported. It was one of the first things he observed about me as child that he recognized as part of my personality. So, I have been doing visual things like drawing and painting all my life. We lived up a 'holler' in the coalfields of West Virginia, but my father arranged for me to apprentice to a traveling artist who painted wall murals as his specialty. He was a coal miner by profession.

    I spent weekends traveling around the tri-state area learning composition, color theory, perspective, and cleaning a lot of brushes and packing a lot of gear.

    Years later I took formal training in high school and college, but never worked in the field.

    Ten years or so ago, I needed a tree skirt for my Christmas tree. Saw one I liked in the department store for over a hundred dollars and said it can't cost that much to make . . . It didn't, but some of the quilts I have made since then have!

    I went to the local fabric store to get supplies for the tree skirt. Didn't know there were quilting supply stores at the time. Four sewing machines and one sewing studio in my basement later, and I know what LQS means.

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