OK - be prepared because I am going to VENT about this issue of Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting magazine. First off, it was wrapped in a plastic bag, so I couldn't flip through it before purchasing, but since I adore the cover quilt AND the cover page promises 11 GREAT QUILTS TO MAKE - I bought it. While there are 11 projects, I wouldn't consider calling it 11 quilts, as some of the sizes are: 30"X18", 17"X13", 36" X 23.5" and 27"X20.5". Right off the top - minus four "quilt" patterns from the list. I think I can live with that in this particular case though because some of the smaller stuff is cute AND like I said - I like the cover quilt.
But the thing that I thought was in VERY BAD TASTE for a quilt magazine that has promoted learning how to quilt for years, plus machine quilting - is a short story called "The Longarm of the Law" by Marily Marks, illustrations by Hannah Fons. Without copying the entire thing, the gist of this story is that a longarm quilter brings a customer to court because the top she brought in to be quilted had "issues". And, the judge handed down a harsh sentence of""6 months of picking out stitches under inadequate lighting with a dull seam ripper" among other penalties.
I know that perhaps the story was intended to be good fun, but I think it just made professional long-arm quilters look like - well, witches with a capital B and would make any potential customer with an old quilt needing to be long-arm quilted to have serious second thoughts about getting it quilted - with such a story as this in mind, I think if I had such a quilt top and didn't know much about quilting - I would throw the top away! Seriously! How could such a story possibly benefit long-arm quilters or the people who are their customers??? I can't see why Fons & Porter's felt the story would be appropriate.
Long-arm quilters certainly have the choice to turn away business that they don't want - it is their business, their choice. And there are many, many long-arm quilters out there that take in all kinds of charity quilts, help piece comfort quilts, help terminally ill people make quilts from their stash to leave as memory quilts, square up crooked quilts, quilt through 70's wool and poly blends with a smile... the list of the generosity of long-arm quilters is long! I just find it shocking that Fons & Porter's would even publish such a story (and it takes up 1 full page and 2 half pages of space). I thought it was insulting, making long-arm quilters out to be overly picky and vendictive to boot (after taking in the top with "issues", the long-arm quilter in the story quilted the top with a very inappropriate pattern for some form of self-therapy!). And one can not help but feel sorry for the poor lady who was dragged into court just because she wanted to get a quilt finished. Gosh, she could have been my very own Nana, spending precious money to have a long ago pieced top quilted to give to one of her grandchildren.
I LOVE my long-arm quilters. They are the very nicest people and they never insult my hard work, even though I am sure they have seen 100X better. If you have a long-arm quilter like the one in this story - I would recommend that you don't throw in the towel on all long-arm quilters - find another long-arm quilter - one who loves what she does instead of complaining about every mis-matched seam. There - I'm done venting. Not sure if I feel better or not, but really - I just felt like I had to stand up for all the 100's of people this story seemed to represent in such a bad light.
Note - the photo won't load, but it is the Oct. 2006 issue with a sunflower/basket quilt on the cover - I will try to put the picture up later...