We’re so excited to have the wonderful Lynne Edwards MBE, a quilter and teacher, on board as a regular contributor. Lynne is renowned for her books and her world-class teaching, and every issue she’ll be guiding you through a ‘virtual workshop’ on a new skill or technique, as well as providing a project to puts your new knowledge to use. We’re sure it’ll take your quilting know-how to amazing new heights.
To celebrate having Lynne on board, we sat down for a chat with her about her quilting life…
How did you first learn to quilt, and what is it about the craft you love?
I started sewing after I was shown how to make simple dresses back in the 60s. My quilting journey began after I saw the old quilts in the America Museum near Bath – they completely stunned me and I knew I had to do it myself. It’s the combining of wonderful fabrics together that, for me, is the essence of the craft.
Could you tell us a bit about your background? How did you start working as a quilt designer?
I trained as a primary school teacher and, having met my artist husband while at college, I became interested in all aspects of craft work which I introduced to the children that I taught. I ran clubs after school and mixed drawing, painting and textile work into the general curriculum. It was a lot easier then, as teaching wasn’t as structured and test- focused as it is now.
After I married we moved to Suffolk and I began to teach evening craft classes. I began patchwork in the late 1960s and it’s been my passion ever since. I’ve always loved teaching and creating things that I then pass on to others. I’ve also always written – my husband and I wrote children’s books together which he illustrated – so the next step was to write instruction sheets for the techniques and projects I was teaching. In time, of course, these became the books that most quilters know me for.
What’s the best part of your job?
Teaching and working with others who share this passion.
What tools and materials could you not live without?
I expect most quilters would agree that it’s the rotary cutter, mat and rulers that have changed our patchwork lives.
Which quilt designers are you really excited about at the moment?
I love Janet Clare’s ideas and books – she uses her own ranges of fabric which are just lovely. I recently went an evening lecture with Zandra Rhodes which was a huge treat as I have always admired her designs and her attitude to what she does. She just loves fabric, and so do I!
What upcoming projects are you currently working on?
I’m focusing on teaching at present and am enjoying travelling a little more, so I’m constantly exploring and working out ideas, projects and techniques for these. I love doing this.
What can readers expect from your Toady’s Quilter projects and features?
Very much what I do with my regular students – I’ll be explaining the elements of quilt making and passing on the little tips and strategies that make everything easier, plus blocks and projects using these skills.
To learn more about Lynne’s approach to quilting and teaching, and to follow her workshops, order a copy of our first issue.