027 The Questing Quilter: Diana Stahl

That’s what I think quilting has been able to do for me, is to give me an outlet to express those little beauties, those little things in my spirit that I want to get out. Imagine that feeling could be in an object around your house and you could see it and go like, oh, oh! Nice, nice nice! I think that’s what we’re all trying to do when we buy something and put it in our home.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

That’s Diana. Teacher, crafter, serene mother of 3…and my beloved college roomie. Even back in her wildest days, she possessed a tender heart, impossible patience, and an enduring fondness for fine fabric, nostalgia, and one more cup of coffee. In the blanket she made for my daughter, every square was a tiny slice of affection sewn together with her signature calm just for me.  – Amber Moreno

**Thanks so much to Amber Moreno for the countless hours she’s put into producing this little podcast for 27 episodes.  I have appreciated every second she’s nudged and carefully spliced to get such thoughtfully crafted episodes from our hour-plus long chats.  Her work will be missed, but I certainly am thankful that I get to see her regularly for non-podcast related hangs.**  -Angelica Norton

Weekly inpo: Yasmin Youssef’s art exhibit at E.A.S.T (East Austin Studio Tour) can be found at @thegoldcurrent on Instagram and her website: http://yasmin.ws

Diana’s favorite quilting book is 501 Rotary Cut quilt blocks by Judy Hopkins and she uses a Pfaff Varimatic sewing machine.  You just need a problem-free sewing machine, an iron, and an ironing board, and you’re all set!  TIP!  Try a 70% cotton/30% polyester batting so it doesn’t shrink, but double-check the size on your pre-sized batting so your finished quilt top matches up correctly!

Her quilter in Winnipeg, Manitoba is Brenna Sneesby at thequilteddaisy.com

An example of the hand towels Diana mentioned around the middle of the episode:

aunt-marthas-flour-sack-towels-vintage-aunt-marthas-flour-sack-tea-towels
Source: http://searchluke.info/aunt-marthas-flour-sack-towels/

Diana’s lovely quilts and workspace:

 

Podcast Origin Story

sewing1
Angelica sewing a baby-sized quilt FTW

I recently made a baby quilt in a fun collaboration with the friend I was making it for (Genevieve Saenz, our first podcast interview).  While deciding what fabric swatches to use, we talked about our individual approaches to sewing and what setting aside time for making things does for our wellbeing.  Then somehow after an exhausting week of work, I was energized by figuring out how to piece this bad boy together and level up from basic blankets to a real quilt with binding.  As I pieced it together, I realized it was just as exciting for me to TALK with my friend about why we make various kinds of art and what goes through our brains during these creative sessions.  I also realized I had a community of friends with similar hobbies, be it music, performance, painting, writing, architecture, building, and growing… and I wanted to set aside time to celebrate their processes.  I then asked my old high school pal, Amber Moreno, if she’d help me put this podcast together as my producer.  We’d been crafty together more times than I could count, and I value her creative direction to elevate the ideas in ways I couldn’t imagine without collaboration.  Plus, her sultry delivery from previous radio and voice-over work make for a fine intro and outro.

Hopefully, our discussions will inspire our listeners to try the project they’ve been putting off or been intimidated by, because sometimes it’s the DOING that makes art worthwhile.  I’ve heard people tell me from time to time that they aren’t creative when they asked about a project I’m working on, and I promise you, that’s their own critic getting in the way.  We are all creative.  We were all daydreaming kids who colored for hours or put together dance routines.  We all played with instruments to explore sounds. We only learned to be self-conscious of our imperfect efforts when trying new things as we got older or someone told us we weren’t good at it.  Around here, we encourage each other.  So how about we just all agree that we are amazing and we should all go out and make some art?

IMG_9285 2
The quilt that started it all