Good morning, Quilters!
Over the past couple of days I have had an amazing experience reconnecting with someone from our quilting community and I am so inspired by her story that I want to share a bit of her incredible mobile studio with you!
Imagine a time, many moons ago, and long before social media and blogging - when I was a fairly newbie longarm quilter. (I purchased my first APQS machine in 1995, I can’t believe that is nearly 22 years ago!)
Email list-serves were the thing back then, and for comradery and support I joined an email list for longarmers like myself for networking, problem solving, idea inspiring and fun and laughter and making friends.
This was the first time I became aware of a fabulous longarm artist by the name of Nichole, who’s last name was Webb at the time. But is no longer!
Fast forward to October 2015, and I am teaching at a retreat in Washington State, where a Nichole Wilde is a student, with a broken leg and a head injury (Wilde is aparently a very appropriate name for this daredevil of a quilter!) and ME, without a head injury, just didn’t put two and two together that THIS Nichole and THAT Nichole were one and the same until I came across a video that she shared on our Quiltville’s Open Studio page on Facebook.
Nichole is now living in a 40 foot diesel motor coach called the Art Bus, complete with a LONGARM in it! Her “Art Bus” is taking her wherever she wants to go, she is quilting up a storm along the way, and having quite the adventure.
This is Nichole with a beautiful smile and a gorgeous quilt behind her!
I asked Nichole if I could share her story with you, and with a resounding yes and some more pictures shared between us this morning, here we are.
Nichole's observation is Making Things Matters! And I agree. We are always doing, making, creating --it's in our nature. It's our way of life, and at the core of who we are as quilters.
From Nichole’s website, http://www.nicholewilde.com/
QUILTING ACROSS AMERICA! TOUR 2016/2017:
I am thrilled to announce that I am embarking upon a North American road tour to launch my Random Acts of Artwork movement, my Making Things Matters! Podcast and my new book into the world in an even BIGGER WAY than this summer!
After the last two and a half years of the honestly devastating losses of my family in the 2014 Oso Mudslide in Washington state, my divorce, then my foolish horse accident that left me without two of my senses (there really is a joke in there, it's okay! It cracks me up too!), I have had a lot of time to think and feel and get perspective on life.
This has led me to the knowledge that my energy is contributing to building the world I live in. The status quo world that we are fed by culture and media is, quite frankly, completely insane to me.
Reality is that we are all a part of a larger whole. We are like cells in the body of Earth, everyone a vital part of the whole. Being the most sentient of cells, it's rather up to us to be good stewards of that which we are entrusted. It's clear that the vast majority of us are not thinking that way.
There are a lot of good reasons to excuse ourselves from actually being the change we want to see in the world. It's uncomfortable to put yourself "out there." People might not like you. You might starve! Blah blah blah.
The one thing that I know about life is that is does not matter what your opinion or actions are, you can find someone to say you are wrong and disagree with you. That knowledge has inspired me to do it anyway.
During my Summer road trip I jumped in a big way and purchased a diesel pusher motor-home. I did a lot of research because my intention was to find one that I could fit a longarm quilting machine into.
Introducing: Artie The Art Bus! I now live full-time on the road, living a life of sharing, community and beauty.
I am so excited about what Nicole is doing with her life that I want to jump right into the video where she shows us how it all fits:
Where there is a will, there is a way! I am Quilter, hear me ROAR!I have to admit at this moment I am feeling a tiny bit jealous, and a bit way over-loaded with stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I love my machines, and stash and everything, but I think in 2017 I want to start doing MORE with LESS! I’ve even thought about taking some vintage machines on the road with me when I have road trips and finding them new homes. It’s time to start thinking about that.Is there room for stash? YES!And you can see Nichole’s bedroom with beautiful quilt just beyond. Could you make plenty of quilts with the stash in this one cupboard? Yes. So why do we think we need MORE? Just SEW IT UP. When you need more, get more.Everyone needs a companion in quilt-crime!Nichole travels with Snoopie by her side. Snoopie was rescued in Texas back in July. She was emaciated and sick and showed up at a friend’s house and was quickly adopted into her new fur-ever rolling residence.
Snoopie the Art Bus Road Warrior Dog! Oh, those ears are slaying me.I am looking forward to seeing what adventures Nichole takes us on this next year. She is teaching courses, still quilting for others, and hosting video chats on her YouTube Channel after taking a much needed 3 year hiatus.I am inspired by the resilience of quilters who have overcome amazing obstacles, hardships, and unfathomable loss. I gain the courage to go forward by watching them rise above. I am in awe.Thank you for allowing me to share a bit of your story, Nichole --I am cheering you on and sending you every positive wish for a fabulous 2017 ahead.This happened for me last night, after all was done.
Do you see something different here? Do you see what I am sewing on? This poor baby that I bought back in 2009 has come out to play after years in isolation. Last used to piece “Pineapple Crazy” from my book String Fling, I just haven’t needed a machine with a thread cutter. But let me tell you, when you are paper-piecing small stuff, and you have to end or begin in the center of the paper template, a thread cutter sure beats all of those long thread tails everywhere.
And let’s face it. Even the more “modern” machines in my fleet need to come out for some attention every now and then. It wouldn’t fit IN the cabinet, so I put a pressing board over the machine hole and set the machine on top. A bit too tall, but hey – I raised my sewing chair a bit, and LOVED that thread cutter to bits.
Does this make me a traitor? Probably so. So be it!
Quiltville Quote of the Day!
Quilt shared by @photokevin74.
There are only a couple days of 2016 left.
I love to end the year on a high note and think of all of the positive things that have happened this past year. I am so grateful for all of the experiences that 2016 has brought and look forward to the next adventure!
I love this interesting quilt that looks like spinning tops, not quite dreidels but this is for my Jewish friends still celebrating Hanukkah. While Christmas only lasted one day growing up I was always a tiny bit jealous of those who got to celebrate for a full week!
I’m off to remedy that. As soon as today’s orders are ready to drop off at the post office, Sadie and I are on the road and up to the cabin. That property we liked near Mouth of Wilson, VA? We are going back to look at it on Saturday. Fingers crossed, everyone!