Meet our member, Stephanie Jacobson! Stephanie is the current President of the Omaha Modern Quilt Guild. When she is not quilting, she is cheering on her adorable son, Logan and working as a pharmacist. Enjoy getting to know Stephanie!
How long have you been a member of OMQG? I attended the very first meeting back in July 2012. It was scary walking into a room not knowing anybody, but being a member of this guild has been a life-changing experience for me.
Tell us about the first quilt you made. My first quilt was made for a friend's new baby girl, and I had no idea what I was doing. This was before widespread use of the internet so I just winged it. I cut out squares of fabric (with scissors!), sewed them together, then realized I had no idea how to actually quilt the darn thing. I ended up tying it with embroidery floss then realized I had no idea how to bind a quilt. I bought some kind of ruffle edging from the fabric store. I cringe when I think about what that quilt looks like, but my friend's daughter is now in high school, and I'm told she still has the quilt.
How would you describe your style? What are your influences? I consider myself modern, but I do love vintage as well. I follow the "rules" I want and disregard the ones I don't like. My go-to style is scrappy, bright rainbow colors mixed with low-volume fabrics. I love Moda Grunge and anything with words/text on it. Up until about a year ago, I was always concerned about what everybody else thought about my quilting and what other people (e.g. Quiltcon judges) wanted to see. I finally realized it was much more fulfilling to create what I loved instead. I spend far to much time on Instagram and Pinterest, but I am always so inspired by the beautiful and creative work of other quilters.
What do you do when you aren’t quilting? I really feel like I spend much of my time quilting or thinking about quilting. I work and spend a lot of time with my husband and son. (But even when I'm hanging out with my family watching TV or waiting for my son at practice, I can't help binding a quilt!)
What is your proudest quilting moment? I can't really pinpoint one proudest quilting moment...each completed quilt brings me such a sense of joy and accomplishment. I feel like I finally found my little niche in the quilting world, and that brings me a sense of purpose and peace. I am proud of my involvement with the PEACE circle of do. Good Stitches (we make and donate quilts to Project Linus), and I am a new member with the Omaha chapter of Quilts of Valor. I'm also proud of myself for going completely out of my comfort zone and gradually stepping into leadership roles.
Any recommendations? My first introduction came from Elizabeth Hartman's blog. This was many years ago, and I remember reading numerous blog posts about being a self-taught quilter and doing all of her quilting on a domestic sewing machine. I purchased her book The Practical Guide to Patchwork, and I was sold. I was going to be a modern quilter. Be supportive of each other...especially new quilters. There are two things that are permanently etched into my mind. After I finished my first quilt, I was so proud of it. I showed it to a highly-skilled quilter, and her response was something to the effect of "It's good for a first quilt. Now do you want me to tell you everything you did wrong?" Twelve-ish years ago, I got my first really nice sewing machine. I took the free classes the shop offered, and learned a lot about my machine and how to use it. I asked the instructor for a few tips on quilting and was told "You have to take hours and hours of classes to learn how to quilt." Because of this, I will encourage and do my best to help anyone with an interest in quilting to try it!
What is your best advice for a beginning quilter? Don't be scared. Don't be afraid to try new things and put yourself out there. Take a class. Jump into a leadership role. I used to be really hesitant to try new things, so I started asking myself "what is the worst that can happen?" and "what is the best that can happen?" (The best always outweighs the worst.) Try new things even if you don't think it's your thing. I just took a quilt class from Lola Jenkins...totally not my thing, but I learned so much and I LOVE it!
Where can people see more of your work? You can find me on Instagram (@stephkucera), and I have a blog.
I just started a crazy (but potentially really awesome) community-driven quilting adventure where I will be collecting one particular quilt block from quilters (hopefully from around the world!) for the remainder of 2017 to assemble into quilts and distribute them to the people and organizations that need them. There is a Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ inspiredquiltproject/ or you can search #inspiredquiltproject on Instagram for more info!