Located in the southern foothills of the Sierra Nevadas, The Wright Fabric began as a hobby and became a passion. Growing up in an era where making one's own clothes was cost-effective, sewing was a practical skill that I began honing in Junior High School. My final was creating an apron, an apron I still have today.
After high school, I utilized such projects to expand my wardrobe, making skirts or slacks, a blouse or two; but it wasn't until after I was married that I found quilting specifically. Another mom in my daughter's preschool class had created a quilt for the kid's teacher, and I found myself gushing over her talent while bemoaning my own ineptness.
In the intervening years, she and I became friends and participate in the Tehachapi Mountain Quilter's Guild. I also belong to a Quilter's Circle where we get together to work, go on retreats at the beach or rent a cottage in the woods, or all make the same mystery quilt together. Having friends who also quilt allows you to bounce ideas off each other, share new techniques with each other, learn from each other, teach each other, inspire each other, and keep each other motivated.
I have, over the years, made dozens of quilts; for the family when they graduate high school, to display in my home, to cover my own bed or my children's, to compete in Quilt Shows, and of course to challenge myself. When it came time to quilt everything together I often found myself frustrated moving my quilt around the neck of my domestic so that I could reach all of my quilts. When I discovered the long arm it seemed to solve all such frustrations, but the price tag was far beyond my reach.
But in 2017 I was scrolling through FaceBook and found a Baby Lock [the Jewel] long arm on Tehachapi Sells, barely used and at such a discount was an opportunity I couldn't pass up. [No matter how good a price, it wasn't in the budget; so with my husband's referee checks we scraped together just enough.] Nervous I wouldn't be able to master the machine held me paralyzed from making an attempt. Yet as I did practice run after practice run I moved to attempt one of my own quilts; the thought of being responsible for an aspect of someone else's project, especially knowing the blood sweat and tears a quilter pours into piecing their quilt tops, was too much to bear.
My Aunt, who has quilted for many years before I began, started giving me multiple finished tops that had been sitting on shelves for years. As time passed I gained the muscle memory to master the machine and branched out to my friends as well. It became a small side gig that paid for my fabric addiction. Five or so years later, my little side gig had grown so much that I upgraded from the Jewel model to the Crown Jewel model with a computer for digital pantograghs from the Baby Lock series. This machine has helped me to be more precise with my long arm quilting!