Friday, April 8, 2016

Featured #battgirl / Janet McWorkman

Janet McWorkman at 
Austin QuiltCon 2013 (Quilters Dream Request) 

What inspired you to start quilting and what inspires you now?

I started quilting in 1971, the year I graduated from Coquille High School in Oregon. I wanted to take a quilt to college with me. It was made of corduroy and my sewing machine had serious tension issues causing the entire, sad quilt top to end up a gigantic “C”. After trimming it to something akin to a rectangle it was a nice couch throw, and I loved it. I used all polyester batting at the time as it was all that was available in my small town. I love the huge variety of battings available now, especially the Quilters Dream selections.

Your favorite thing about quilting and/or being part of the quilting industry?

 I love the incredible variety of colors and textures I get to work (play?) with. I live in Anchorage, Alaska and the winters can be very long and dark. Having gorgeous fabrics to look at inspires me to make something wonderful. I like to donate quilts to local charities – my church, a youth symphony, Friends of Pets and Quilter’s Dream batting makes these bed or couch quilts warm and cozy. The quilts I donate are also completely 100% cotton which makes me feel good about the donation.

The quilting industry is amazingly supportive of my endeavors. The talent, creativity and generosity that comes my way is a daily reminder of what can be accomplished with help and opportunity. Just this week a member of the Kaffe Fassett Collective Facebook website sent out-of-production fabric to me to finish a project. Isn’t that marvelous?!

 Any special connections and friendships you have gained through quilting?

I have met some of my very best friends through quilting. I travel with a group of fabulous women who all quilt beautifully, but all have very different tastes in quiltmaking. We compliment each other and love traveling to retreats together. Our motto is “no bitch in the bunch quilters.” A few of us are planning a trip to Sweden and will definitely check out the textile industry there.

This log cabin was a result from a block swap on Facebook
 & donated to Anchorage's Amazing Grace Lutheran Church.
(Quilters Dream Request)  

Any upcoming events, classes, guild meetings, etc you’d like to share or spread the word about? If so, please include links, address & contact info.

I have a book being released in October this year (yeah!) by C & T Publishing. It is titled The ABC’s of Quiltmaking. It is primarily an  alphabet quilt that teaches a quilting skill with each letter of the alphabet. There are also several smaller projects such as table runners, placemats, crib and couch quilts taught in the book. The batting I chose for the primary quilt and all the projects in the book was Quilter’s Dream Request batting. I love how it feels, how easy it is to work with and how beautifully it washes when the project is completed.

Which Quilters Dream Batting product is yours, and/or your customers' favorites and why?

I always choose Quilter’s Dream Request or Select batting. Both have excellent needling properties, are 100% cotton, are competively priced and are readily available in all sizes. Since I’ve been using Quilter’s Dream batting most of my quilting friends have had an opportunity to work with it also, and have all made the switch to QD battings. They are the absolute best.

Please share your special or helpful quilting techniques and tips.

I machine quilt my own work whenever possible. If the quilt is a twin size or smaller I can handle it on my home machine. My best tip is a design wall....the bigger the better. I sandwich my quilts right on the wall! It works like a charm. The design wall is permanently covered with a queen size Quilter’s Dream batt. I drew a 6” grid on it to assist with block and quilt placement. When I want to sandwich a quilt top and back I put the batting on the design wall first, lightly spray with 505 fabric adhesive and position the backing. It is an easy job to eliminate any puckers when standing instead of trying to do it on a table or floor. Then, turn the batting/backing unit as one, spray the batting again with 505 and smooth the top on last, again being certain there are no pleats or puckers.

This Lemoyne Star with appliqued border was quilted by Marit Anderson and
hangs in the Providence Alaska Medical Center.
(Quilters Dream Request)

 Are you active in Social media? If so, please include your links. We will share the blog post on our Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter etc.

Sorry – too busy quilting! But, I do belong to a few Facebook groups: The Modern Quilt Guild, The Kaffe Fasset Collective and participate in few fabric and block swaps on Facebook. It’s fun, and the variety of fabrics is amazing.


If you or someone you know is interested in becoming one of our Featured #battgirl/#battman, then click HERE for more details!! 

Happy Quilting,