ID number: TQ.2016.017
Name of interviewee: Kathy Hunt
Name of interviewer: Denise Smith
Name of transcriber: Take 1
Location: Kathy’s home
Address: Bromsgrove, Worcestershire
Date: 12 April 2016
Length of interview: 0:43:05
Kathy’s ‘After the Flood’ wallhanging quilt was made for her grandson. It is her own design, inspired by Danish artist Ton Schulten, hand pieced using silk velvet and free motion quilted. Later Kathy talks about her quilting heritage, how she was introduced to quilting by her friend, Ineke Berlyn, and making her first quilt. She also discusses dyeing fabric and her reluctance to exhibit her quilts.
Denise Smith [DS]: Talking Quilt interview 2016.017. Today is Tuesday 12th April and the time is one o’clock. We’re in the home of Kathy Hunt in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire. Hello Kathy.
Kathy Hunt [KH]: Hello.
DS: Would you like to tell me about this quilt we have in front of us here?
KH: Well, I would think it would classify as a small wall hanging. It’s 21 and a half inches wide by 20 inches high and its title is After The Flood. I made it in 2004 for my grandson; he was the first gran… my first grandson who was born. His name is [Evan] and I made it for him and eventually finished it and gave it to him either for his first birthday or for Christmas in 2004. His birthday and Christmas are only a few days apart so, it was one or the other and I can’t really remember which one it was, ’cause it’s a long time ago. It’s basically a scene, with… I… it started out as a Noah’s Ark and I got carried away with the design and I got frightened of the difficulty of stitching animals onto the scene and everything. So I ended up making what I considered to be quite a quirky take on Noah’s Ark and it doesn’t really look like a traditional Noah’s Ark at all. The Ark is a primitive, primitively drawn boat wi… that’s just basically a semi-circle that looks like it’s a very… like it’s perched on top of a hill. And the hill is surrounded completely by water, and there’s a sky scene ab… above it, which included a very large and very bright sun. I presume the hill was meant… in my thinking, was meant to be Mount Ararat and the boat is, is the Ark. And there are no animals in the Ark I th… it looks like they’ve left. And there is a pathway down from the boat leading… into the water really. I chose this style because I had been taken to Holland… I went to Holland with Ineke Berlyn who’s Dutch, and who’s quite a well-known quilter now, in, in the few years before that. And Ineke was very taken with this Dutch artist called Ton Schlor… Schulten… I can’t say the name in the way Dutch people do. He works in a place called Ootsmarsum in Holland and we went to his gallery. And Ineke had been looking at his landscapes because they’ve… because of the way they’re done, they’re very suitable for making into a patchwork. And my very first attempt at anything like this was a wall hanging which was just a copy of one of his pictures. And… it taught me the techniques of how to put it all together and everything. I then did another one, which was also pretty much a copy of his pictures. And when I came to do this one, I drew this myself and did the design. But I used the same techniques and the same style that come… that are in his landscapes. Their fea… one of the features of his landscapes are very primary colours. And they always… they look to me like there’s a sort of window, with almost like a net curtain on either side, or a curtain that’s been opened. And the picture gets brighter as it goes toward the middle. And the edges of the pictures, the colours are slightly darker shades. And it kind of looks like you’re looking maybe through a net or something like that. As… and then you focus onto the centre of the landscape. And I rather liked that, and I wanted to, I wanted to try and create it for myself.
DS: Yeah. You, you appear to have done that in this quilt itself. Can you talk a bit more about the, the colours and design of this one?
KH: Right yes, now the colours… the, the sea and the water part of it are shades of blue. Probably indigo I would think because I was learning to do hand… I, I was learning to do dyeing and I… we experi… I experimented with procion dyes and also with natural indigo. And I have a feeling that this might have been some of the indigo. It… there are lots of different shades of it, and it’s done on cotton. But there are interspersed in amongst the cottons some pieces of silk which give a different texture to it. And, the pieces of silk were probably bought the colours that they are. I don’t think I’d ever done any dyeing of silk fabrics at that time. The sky is shades of yellows and deep oranges and a little bit of a rust colour and that sort of thing in it. Very, very bright some of it. And, in the sky there are a few pieces of silk velvet which, silk velvet takes colour and dye absolutely fantastically. It rea… you really get really deep colours, and I think that comes out in the piece that you can… you can pick out the pieces of silk velvet that are there. The hill itself is… the mountain, whatever it is, is brown and again the shades of orange and gold, and rust sort of colours are used. As you get toward the centre of the actual landscape, all the colours become lighter and as I said they become deeper colours as you work away from it to the margins of it, of it. The Ark is hand dyed fabric again just in shades of brown. It’s got a little sort of house or cabin or something on the… on, on it, on the deck which is pieced again, in d… in shades of brown. And there’s, there’s a piece stuck in the side of the boat which is like a door or something, so that the animals or whatever could get out, for easy loading anyway. And the actual path leading down from the Ark is, another piece of dyed silk velvet, which is a very rich brown colour. It’s… made of a lot of small pieces isn’t it? Mm…
DS: What techniques did you use to put the actual picture together? Did you use any, applique or was it all hand pieced?
KH: It’s, it’s all… it is all hand pieced. I think that it’s such a long time ago, it’s really quite difficult to remember but, I, I rem, I remember having a picture, drawn out with the colours I wanted to use in it. Not… and it took me a long time to collect together all the different shades and depths of colour that I wanted. And when I finally had it, I, I can remember using raffle tickets to number the pieces so that they went together in the right order and in the right lines. And it was worked in [counts] one, two, three, four, five strips and each strip was made with… sorry, I’m working from the outside toward the centre, along the height of it. And I would make a strip, and then the next strip would be very nearly the same colours but in a slightly lighter shade. And then the middle, the strip is quite wide and it looks as though I have applied the Ark on top of the background. But I, do you know I really cannot remember whether that’s exactly what I did or not but it… that’s what it looks like to me, it looks like I pieced the whole background, and then put the Ark on top if it. And then stitched, stitched round it. Once it was all assembled, it is then quilted. The sky itself is, probably been quilted with a walking foot because the stitching is very straight, and there aren’t very many wobbles in it or anything. And it also looks to me like the stitched length has been regulated. The… where there’s water, has been free machine… free motion quilted using a sewing machine obviously. And there are areas where there are, what do you call them, bubble, like circle, circles which look a bit like foam or bubbles or something like that. There are also a sort of zig zag lines that look like waves or gi, give it texture to make it look like it’s water and, I do think I have achieved that to some extent. Er… that’s pretty much describes the construction of it.
DS: And you mentioned free motion quilting. Can you just explain what free motion quilting is?
KH: Right. Well, free motion quilting is obviously done on a sewing machine rather than by hand. It is normal to have on a sewing machine feed dogs which regulate the way the fabric is moved through the machine. And you can change the stitch length by changing the way this feed dogs work. So when you come to do free machine… free motion quilting, the feed dog… there’s a, a way of making the feed dogs drop down, out so that the fabric doesn’t move under the needle. And the person who’s operating the machine moves the fabric, and guides the fabric under it and can… you can, you can go forward, backwards, side to side, make stars or circles or whatever and you have to do it in a way that regulates the length of the stitch. And the faster you move the fabric, the shorter the stitch. The slower you move the fabric, the longer the stitch, and if you’re not very good at it you get kind of a mixture of things that you didn’t really want sometimes. And one of the real difficulties with it is that it’s almost impossible to pi… unpick if you make a mistake. So you just sort of have to live with your mistakes or, don’t do it.
DS: That’s an excellent explanation of free motion quilting. Did… with the… I can see on the borders around the picture, you have some animals that would have been in the ark. Were they free motion quilting?
KH: Yes and no. They w… they are free motion quilted. Can I just say that the border kind of frames the picture and is a sort of solid hand dyed brown fabric. Not very well applied, but I think it’s probably the first time I ever did mitred corners on a border and I would imagine that I struggled with that a little bit. And that it is also bound with a half inch binding in the same colour, so that that acts as a frame for the whole thing. Because it was supposed to be a Noah’s Ark, I felt I had to put the animals in. And you’ll find that there’s two of everything. There’s two giraffes, and two rhinoceroses, and, or whatever the plural is. Two kangaroos, there’s two dolphins at the bottom and some turtles. And at the top, going out of the border and slightly into the sky, there’s a dove. I think… I’m pretty sure what I did was trace these onto either stitch and tear or more likely greaseproof paper. And then I would have pinned the greaseproof paper onto the border and stitched round the outline of the fabric and then torn the paper away. And I am pretty confident that that’s the method that I used for that. One of the things that you can’t tell by looking at the front of the quilt is that the back um, shows the stitching, but I used invisible thread for the bobbin, so that I… cause I always think that when you, when you quilt something like this, it looks so messy at the back if you’ve not sort of hidden the, the stitching. And it’s worked fairly well but it’s an awfully difficult material to work with. It, it’s… you can’t see it, and that ma… that really is quite challenging sometimes because it’s ny… it’s a k… it’s a kind of nylon I think or something like that, and the thread curls up and it doesn’t, it doesn’t co-operate very well, but it…
DS: It looks to me as though you coped very well with it actually… the stitching’s beautiful.
KH: Thank you.
DS: What types of thread did you use on the actual picture itself? I can see two or three different types.
KH: They’re probably mostly cotton. Possibly some rayon or polyester because I was looking more to get the right colour than maybe the right fabric. But I do… I have moved away from that and a lot of this will be cotton. I haven’t really used very much variegated thread which surprised me, I haven’t… I’ve changed it in the intervening time and I use a lot more variegated thread. But with the sun, I have used a gold metallic thread which I’m almost certain will be a Madeira because I experimented a lot with gold threads and some of them… my s, sewing machine and I didn’t get on with. But, there are some gold Madeira threads that work really well. And that’s, that’s what… probably what I’ve stitched the sun with. And it just gives a l… it, it draws the eye to the corner where the sun is.
DS: You’re saying Madeira, is that the… maker’s name?
KH: Yes. It’s a b… I guess it’s a brand isn’t it, yes, yeah.
DS: And, do, do you label your quilts Kathy?
KH: Yes, there is a label on the back of this, which I will turn it over and show you.
KH: I must, I must have had a lot of time to spare, because the label shows a traditional view of Noah’s Ark very similar in shape to the one I’ve used on the front so I’m… wonder if that wasn’t the model for it in the first place. And that’s in the top left hand corner of the label, which is just a piece of calico. And I’ve printed the label by using probably Bubble Jet 2000 or something like that.
DS: Now you’re gonna have to explain Bubble Jet to me.
KH: Well, it’s just a, a liquid you… they sell it at shows and places like that, and you soak the fabric in it for a brief period of time, and dry… and then you let it dry. And then you have to fix the fabric onto something to stabilise it. I use freezer paper, and sometimes your printer, your computer printer will let the f… the paper and the fabric go through nicely, and sometimes you get an awful mess and, it jams the printer and you have to spend hours un-jamming it. And getting very cross, because you’ve only soaked one piece of fabric. But, this one, clearly the fabric went through alright and it says the title After The Flood by KH. And it’s got the date December 2004, and it says for Evan James Taylor, born 16th of December 2003. Inspired by the work of Ton Schkulten… Schulten. And that’s, that’s just in the back, bottom corner of the all hanging.
DS: That’s lovely. And where, where is the quilt kept now?
KH: In a tube [laughs]. I don’t know what possessed me to make such a quirky gift for a child that young. And my daughter very manfully put it up in his bedroom and everything, and he was afraid of it and asked to have it taken down and… so, it’s been rolled up in a tube for probably 12 years. And it… this is just because I’d thought I would like to look at it again for today, I, I asked if I, if I could have it back. And I’ve… quite surprised by… that I would have chosen to do something like this for a child that young. But that’s…
DS: How, how do you feel about the quilt and the techniques that you used in it?
KH: I, I really enjoyed making it. I could remember being quite pleased with it, but I do think it’s naive and I… my knowledge and skill in the intervening years is improved. And there are parts of it I think oh, I wish I’d made that better, I don’t, I don’t really think that the free motion quilting’s very good. But I was surprised at how good the animals in the border were. But another sign of my insecurity is the fact that I used a thread that blended completely in with the border. And in certain lights you can’t even see them. So, I, I think that was my way of sort of coping with being scared of not being good enough to do this.
DS: Is that… do you remember when you made your first quilt?
KH: Well, the first one I can put my finger on completely, I made in which I was expecting my first gran… my very first grandchild who turned out to be a girl. So that would have been… 1999. Or sometime during 2000 because she was born toward the end of 2000. And it was made from some red fabric that I bought, and white and I did it by hand and it was English paper pieced hexagons which, probably are one of the things that a lot of people start with when they’re quite young. And I’ve still got it in a, a, a box up in my loft. It was a pram… it was made to be a pram quilt, just what’s that? Maybe 23, 24 inches by 18 or something like that. The winter after she was born was very cold and she slept under it in the pram quite a lot. But, you know, people… by the time I’d had any of the other children there was nobody, nobody had prams anymore. And, it never got passed on to any other grandchildren or anything like that. But it’s still in existence. And I came across a little bit of the fabric the other day in a drawer and I thought, ‘Oh my goodness,’ There were a few left over bits with… still with the papers in.
DS: Oh that’s interesting. Are there any other quilters in your family?
KH: No. Not, not now. But my grandmother, my mother’s mother made quilts by hand. I don’t think that there’s any machine sewing in any of the quilts. I have two or three of the quilts that she made. And she made them… she, she was living at the time in a place called Ogdensburg New York which is on the St Lawrence River, right on the Canadian border and she was actually born in Canada herself and most of her family lived in Canada. But she was married to… her, her husband was American and she lived in Ogdensburg all their married life. And she used to make them on a traditional American style quilt with… which, the you know the, the sandwiched quilt which is the quilt top, the wadding, and the… well batting as my grandmother would have called it. And the back of the quilt are on a kind of, a pair of poles basically, the way, the way she did it. So… and it was wound round these poles and you stitched across, maybe 12 inches of it and then rolled it away… to release the next bit that needed to be quilted. And it was all quilted in a very naive, long stitch way. I don’t think she was greatly skilled by any means but it was… I think it was in the tradition of the time. And the one I remember most she made when I had my own bedroom at home for the first time and she’d done a, a, a quilt made with embroidered squares with nursery rhymes on. So the w… the little embroidery pictures I, I would su… I suspect it would have been some kind of kit. The little pictures, it was Mary had a little lamb and there was a, an embroidered picture of Mary with her lamb, and the name of the n, nursery rhyme. And then that was fitted… that was on a kind of white background. And there was pink sashing between the, little blocks and a pink border. And then it was all hand quilted, it was a, single bed sized quilt.
DS: Do you do a lot of hand quilting or do you do a lot of… is it machine or hand piecing?
KH: I really enjoy hand quilting, and I have two or three small objects that are hand quilted. I’ve done… I, I, I was taught by Barbara Cheney at a, at a workshop. I do attend workshops. I tried… I try to go to ones where I’m going to learn a skill that I haven’t… th, that I don’t have or something like that. And she does this rocking method where you put several stitches on the needle and then pull it through. And I have a couple of things that I have made that were done by her method. And I also have an unfinished quilt from about the same vintage as the wall hanging we’ve been talking about which isn’t finished yet, because it’s such a daunting thing. And I… every Winter I think I’m gonna get that quilt out and finish it. And I do a bit more, but it’s never quite managed to get to the end stage.
DS: Oh, perhaps one day it’ll be finished.
KH: Yeah well, I think I’d better hurry up.
DS: This, this quilt that we’ve got here was your own design. Do… are all of your quilts… are you… of your own design or do you use patterns?
KH: I, I have used patterns. One of… one in particular was from… um, I’ve forgotten her name… I forget her name at the moment. She runs White Cottage…
KH: Yeah Jackie [DS: Can’t remember her surname]. It’ll come to me in a minute. But anyway, a, a design of hers. And I bought… I, I went there specifically because I liked the type of patter… the, the like of… sorry… the type of fabrics that she sells. They’re basically mostly Moda fabrics and I wanted to do something in a sort of American style. And it was a quilt with stars easy. Easy stars on it. And, that, that I did to a pattern. And one of my children… one of my daughters rather liked it and it disappeared. I had, I had made it to go with the furniture in my lounge and I was really quite keen to be snuggling under it when I was watching television. But, I don’t have it anymore, but it’s well used, it’s still around.
DS: You’ve mentioned Moda fabrics. Do you have any other… make that you use or d… is that one of your favourites?
KH: Well, I wouldn’t say it was a favourite, a favourite particularly. I don’t buy commercially print fabric very much. I basically buy fabric and dye it and so I… every now and then, if I’m gonna make a traditional patchwork quilt I will buy fabric to make that. Anything I’ve designed myself, tends to be made out of hand dyed fabrics, things that I’ve worked on and dyed. Or bagged you know, we, we’d sometimes pinch a bit from somebody else when they’ve got the right colour or something like that… trade, I think maybe I should say rather than just pinched. But that, that’s pretty much what I like to do.
DS: So your own designs, do you, do you draw them out? Or is it something that just happens as you work along?
KH: Sometimes they just happen. I, I, I had many years gone to an almost weekly wilk… workshop, a class or a workshop gathering, I’m not really sure what you’d call it, with Edwina Mackinnon. She’s still, still doing that regularly but I found it… it… I just had a lot of other things on and I couldn’t go anymore for a while. And… the, the way that the year usually panned out was that from September probably till Christmas, there would be a lot of design work done in sketch books and planning and that’s not, not planning the whole quilts or anything, but just playing with ideas and trying to draw things out and that sort of thing. And dyeing fabrics and experimenting with different ways of applying colour to fabric. I’ve learned mono printing, printing with acrylic, printing with thickened procion dyes, batik type things where you use wax, a, a wax resist on the fabric. Experimented with an awful lot of things. And then tried to make something from the f… using the fabric itself as the basis for the design, or to, to develop a design from what you see in front of you and sometimes the other way round doing some design work first, and then trying to dye the fabrics that would be the right colours for that sort of thing.
DS: And do you have a favourite technique? Is batik one of your favourites or…?
KH: I, I actually have hardly… I don… I haven’t done much batik at all. It was just something… Edwina’s very good at bringing in lots of things to tempt you [laughs] into new, new ways of working and that, that was just one of them. I found, I found it a bit too difficult to draw with the little thing that holds the wax and not drip wax all over the places I didn’t want it and that sort of thing and I’m a little bit too precise in the way I work, for it to be a, a technique I would use an awful lot of. I quite like the idea… I, I like to have… I, I like the idea of a whole piece of fabric that you can see something that you can stitch on to it. And those are the sorts of things I’ve been most pleased with. Sometime… sometimes I don’t quite get it right, and I’ll get, I’ll get the stitching done and everything, and I’ll think, ‘Oh what am I going to do with this?’ And that sometimes finds its way to storage and I come back to it maybe two or three years later with an idea, something I can do with it. I’m not terribly creative. I’m you know, I’m, I’m act… I come from a science background. And the art teaching that we had at the school that I went to was okay if you had any signs of being able to draw or paint or anything like that. But you know, I think my teacher probably, quietly thought, ‘I hope she doesn’t come back next year because she’s not very good.’ And I didn’t, I didn’t, didn’t do any more art. And I actually, I, I regret the fact that somebody didn’t s… didn’t actually repeat the mantra of, anybody can learn to draw.
DS: So you mentioned the dyeing of your fabrics as well. Is that something you do at home, or is it something you do at this class that you mentioned?
KH: Mixture of both. I, I will get the dyes out when I want particular colour. and I’ve got so I can get close to some of the colours. You know I… it, it’s difficult because it… I’m, I’m sure commercially, there must be some way of measuring the dye and the fabric, and knowing exactly how much to apply, and always being a… well not always, but being able to repeat a, a particular colour over a period of time. And when you do that at home, it, it, it doesn’t work. But, there’s an awful lot of serendipity. You come aw… you know, you sometimes just end up with something that’s really, really lovely, and you think, ‘Ooh, I really like, and I’m going to make something from it,’ and that’s, and that’s where you go from there.
DS: You mentioned Ineke Berlyn earlier. Has she been a big influence in your quilting?
KH: Well, she really made me… or not made me, she got me started to be honest. How do I know her? She, she married a chap who was a team mate of my husband’s. They played rugby together and my husband didn’t happen to go on that particular tour but there was a tour to Holland and Ineke’s husband met Ineke at the time and she came over here and love bloomed and they got married and they’ve lived here in Bromsgrove ever since. And, she was a very… she, she had come from an art background, although she had worked as a multi lingual secretary, or some sort of PA or something like that before she met John. And… she was l, looking to develop the art side of her interest and discovered patchwork and quilting and did City and Guilds… I, I, I think I’ve got this right. She did City and Guilds with Di Wells in Cheltenham, to start… for the first level. There’s… they’ve changed City and Guilds since and I can’t remember all the details anymore. And then I think she did the second lot with Edwina…the, the level two bit. Anyway, it… while she was developing her skills, she started inviting people to come round for a few hours on a Wednesday evening. And she started teaching odd little bits of patchwork. And she was very generous with the fabrics that she’d got and everything and that’s how I started. As you know, as a friend going round. And I, I’ve always enjoyed sewing, so, the, the… she taught me basic… the basic, how to use a, a rotary cutter and a mat, and how to cut fabric out, and how to piece and how to do it as accurately as you possibly can, which was a bit of a challenge and I ended up… I bought my first new sewing machine. I’d been making clothes on the same old sewing machine for years and years and years…. eventually decided that one wasn’t good enough and moved up a bit, and all that sort of thing and, never really looked back.
DS: What sort of m… sewing machine do you use now?
KH: Well, my favourite sewing machine is, is a Bernina. It’s now, I think probably 11 years old, and it probably needs to be replaced. It certainly needs a good… service at the moment. But I also have a Janome which is a bit… it… which was the one that preceded the Bernina and, if I were going to do just plain straight piecing, I think the Janome does a better job. It’s got a very good straight stitch and it’s quite accurate, it’s… the piecing on it is very accurate. But for free machining and that sort of thing I, I love the Bernina.
DS: I think a lot of people would agree with you. Are, are you a member of any other groups now, or do you still see In… go to Ineke’s group?
KH: I… Ineke’s been poorly which a lot of people will know and she doesn’t really do an awful lot of teaching at the moment, although she does quite a lot… I think she’s still teaching online, but I… found that… go… I, I was attending Edwina’s classes which were more… which were regular. Edw… Ineke tended to do monthly groups instead of weekly, and I really was… at the time I was really enjoying having the weekly contact with other quilters and, they’re not just quilters they’re, they’re now… they’re… most of them are artists. I wouldn’t dream of calling myself one. And so, so, no, I haven’t been continuing with her. I’ve had some time with Bobby Britnell and some time with Ruth Issett as well, as well as those… those are probably the four main influences on me. And I belong to two quilting groups. One is Marlbrook Quilters and other is Kingfisher Quilters. Marlbrook only meets once a month for a couple of hours and, Kingfisher meets twice a month for an evening. And, they’re quite different groups. The Kingfisher’s very large, Marlbrook is quite small. And there’s different interests and there’s always something to be learned from whoever’s there, and that’s the thing I really enjoy about it. And I also like the social side of quilting. I mean there’s you know, you could sit in your house and quilt all day and never talk to anybody else but, that’s… to me, that, that’s the, the social side of it is being with other people.
DS: And that’s very important to you, the social side?
KH: Yeah. I li, I like the fact that they’re interest… that we have an interest in common. And you could talk to anybody who’s there because you’ve got the interest in common. I think that’s really important.
DS: Do you have an involvement in any, any of the groups or do you, or do you just go along?
KH: [Laughs] Gosh, I’m Chairman at Marlbrook this year for… I have in the past been… I suppose the Programme Secretary would be the title of it, although we don’t call it that, where, where you plan what’s going to happen for the next two years in the usu… well, usually the term is two years but it doesn’t have to be. And I’m, I… so I’ve done bits and… done… did bits and pieces on both. I’ve never taken an active part at Kingfisher. It’s a very large group, and there are lots of other people who know a lot more than I do. And I think you can’t cover… I couldn’t focus on too many things so, I think as long as you’re giving something somewhere, that that’s as much as can be expected really.
DS: Yeah. Have you ever been a member of The Quilters’ Guild?
KH: No. I’m not really sure why. [Pauses] I just, I know you get a discount if you’re a member. You get a discount on the entries to shows and things like that. But I don’t consider myself… I’m, I, I, I am a quilter but, I don’t particular enjoy traditional patchwork. I find it very repetitive and, I do it. I’ve done it for… on several large quilts but I get… I find myself thinking I’ve only got 20 more of these to do and I don’t really want to… I, I don’t enjoy that. I don’t enjoy the fact that I’m thinking I’ve gotta finish this, I’ve gotta finish this, that, that aspect of it. I like the creative side of it. I just wish I was better at it.
DS: Well, this one looks lovely. Do you ever eg… exhibit any of your quilts?
KH: I have only ever once put one in an exhibit. And that was when it was done in this style and preceded this, but it was basically a copy of one of the artist’s own designs. And I personally now think that, I, I don’t know, I’ve rea, I read an article recently about why it’s important for people to put things into exhibits. And it’s to, really to en, to encourage other people and, and to, and to make the shows. I, I think you might have said to me once, you know, if, if nobody puts anything in a show then there won’t be any shows and I do agree with you. But I also, see such wonderful work, that I’m embarrassed that I can’t… you know, to, to show mine because I think it’s not you know, it’s not really worthy of other people to… looking at it if, if that’s…
DS: I don’t think you should feel like that because your work is beautiful.
KH: Well, I know, I know that you know, there are people who are worse than me and there are people who are better but, I, I actually feel a certain amount of reticence about sharing what what I’ve done because I, I want people to like it.
DS: But if you don’t show it then…
KH: No obviously, yeah, yes. I’m very careful who I give things to because I can’t bear the idea of, having put all this creative and mental effort and the cost and everything else into making something that somebody rolls up and puts in a tube and never looks at again. I’m, I’m actually doubting whether or not this is gonna actually go back to its home. I’m going to wait until I’m asked for it.
DS: Okay. That’s lovely Kathy. Just one more question. Can you just tell us why quilting is so important in your life?
KH: Gosh you’re, you’re, you’re asking me something I’ve almost told you the answer to. Basically, I’m a widow, I live alone. I’m… I have a lot of time with my family and my grandchildren but, this is something I can do that I can go on my own to, or I can… I have made some very, very good friends. And it also is a way of filling the spaces in life when you haven’t got very much else to do. You know I’m… I, I’m not very good at cleaning and things like that. And, although I do the garden, I only do it on a sort of token basis. And there’s other times, and I just… I can get lost in making a quilt I can get lost in trying to develop an idea. And I thoroughly enjoy it. And I do like other quilters, I think they’re great people.
DS: Brilliant, Kathy. Thank you.