|Sharon's on the right, and that's me on the left ... 2009.
(We simply must take a more recent shot.)
Thanks, Cathy, for sending me this picture!
My very dear friend Sharon Dixon has agreed to appear as my Guest Quilter today. She is a wonderful machine quilter, with a business in longarm quilting for quilt-top makers, as well as creating one-of-a-kind t-shirt quilts for her customers, called Katy T-Shirt Quilts . She uses a special soft interfacing so that her t-shirt quilts come out nice and soft ... "real" quilts, not stiff and icky like some I've seen. She has also now opened a new Etsy store to sell her own pieced quilts. She has many customers from across the world.
|Sharon's funky new layout design for t-shirt quilts
Interview with Sharon Dixon:
Sharon, how did you get involved in quilting, and how long have you been quilting as a business?
|The simplest t-shirt layout.
Do you still piece quilts? How do you manage your time in order to be both creative and a successful businesswoman?
I'm usually so busy piecing T-shirt quilts or other special order quilts for customers that I don't find much time to piece or quilt my own. But I try to sneak in one of my own every so often. Time management is my biggest challenge. It's so easy when one is self-employed at home to get distracted and not use time wisely. But I try to work all morning and then take a two-hour break in the afternoon to rest and re-energize before working until about 8:00 or so at night. It helps a lot that I love what I do. And I have to admit that I don't follow a rigid schedule every day of the week. Having flexibility to spend time with my grandkids and quilting friends is important to me. I would be remiss if I didn't credit my husband Tommy with a great deal of my success because he does so much to help me which allows me time to concentrate on my quilting business..
|A very cool pieced layout for t-shirts.
What awards/ribbons have you won, and what publications have you appeared in?
I've won several ribbons in the West Houston Quilter's Guild quilt shows, but the one I was most excited about was the Judge's Choice ribbon. I've been fortunate to have quilts that I quilted for Bonnie Blue Quilts appear in McCall's Quilting Magazine and on the cover of Quilt Mania, a French quilting magazine that is published in several languages. Cynthia Regone's book Colorful Quilts, A Journey Through Fabric featured several quilts that I quilted for her. And four quilts that I quilted were published in Simple Strategies for Block Swap Quilts by Lynn Roddy Brown. I have been told that Lynn is releasing another book in August that will have my quilting in it, and another Bonnie Blue quilt will be appearing in a magazine this spring.
|A t-shirt quilt made for the AWTY International School auction.
What advice do you have for customers who have never taken their quilt-tops to a longarm quilter to be finished?
The most important advice would be to find a reputable longarm quilter. One does not instantly become a professional machine quilter when she purchases her first quilting machine. It takes practice to develop longarm skills as well as customer service skills.
|Texas Aggie t-shirt quilt
What would you do with a year free to do what you wanted with no responsibilities or financial concerns?
I would spend more time with my grandkids and maybe take each of them on a special trip. I would also do some traveling with my husband and quilting friends. But most of the year would probably be spent piecing and quilting my own quilts!
|One of Sharon's own pieced quilts ... gorgeous!
Thank you, Sharon, for being my guest today ...
|Detail of the quilt shown above.