quilter love

Quilter Love: Anna Boenish of Quilting Queerly!

Quilter Love: Anna Boenish of Quilting Queerly! | Right Sides TogetherAnna Boenish of Quilting Queerly is taking the modern quilting world by storm — and that’s a very good thing. I first discovered her amazing work in my Instagram feed from QuiltCon earlier this year; since then, she’s led an MQG monthly webinar and is slated to teach at QuiltCon 2017. She’s doing incredible things with English Paper Piecing, and her backstory and business name are super interesting, so I wanted to ask her to share here. Thanks, Anna!

What’s your sewing story?

When I was ten years old, Marla Varner, a family friend, taught me how to make a quilt. My parents were both public school teachers at the time (they just retired last month after teaching for 39 years!) and needed to go to a conference over a three-day weekend, so they dropped me and my brother off at Marla’s house. Over the course of those three days, Marla and I made my first quilt from start to finish. Looking back, I’m amazed at how much patience she had to show me how to sew on one of her old Singers, press seams with an iron, and tie off the quilt with yarn. That’s one of my favorite things about quilt community: the willingness to so openly pass on the tradition and share skills and knowledge.

Quilter Love: Anna Boenish of Quilting Queerly! | Right Sides Together   Quilter Love: Anna Boenish of Quilting Queerly! | Right Sides Together

Smiling in front of one of my first quilts with Marla Varner, who taught me how to quilt. Marla’s quilt won First Prize in hand quilting at the second QuiltCon in Austin, TX. She goes by the name Penny Lane Quilts on her website and @pennylanequilts on Instagram. I’m incredibly grateful for the role she’s played in my quilting journey.

When I was in seventh grade, Marla called up my parents and said she was at a garage sale and found a 1953 Singer sewing machine in great shape for $50. She said it’d make an excellent gift for me. My parents bought it and gave it to me as a Christmas present. That’s the sewing machine that I got tattooed on my arm a few years ago.  (more…)

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