The first spark of inspiration for
Quilts for Sale actually had its origins years ago
when Maria was in first grade. Her teacher read stories of
the pioneers which told about the women who made quilts from
their fabric scraps. She was intrigued, her imagination was
kindled, and a lifelong interest and love of quilts was born.
Eventually, she became the first and only quilter in her family.
At 13 years of age, Maria started
working part time after school and on weekends as a cashier
at the local supermarket. Each week she'd buy a copy of either
Day Magazine or Family
Circle Magazine and bring it home to her mother. (Can
you believe that they only cost 5¢ each at the time?
It's true!) Maria was particularly interested in the articles
and pictures of quilts. Most often, the ones depicted were
Baltimore Album quilts. Maria had learned to sew at the age
of eleven in seventh grade and developed the incorrect thought
that that these lovely quilts would always be far beyond her
abilities and expertise.
Fast forward to 1985 when WNED
TV, a PBS station from Buffalo, New York, aired the series,
Lap Quilting with Georgia
Maria excitedly watched each segment, took copious notes,
and bought the book that went with the series. She was thrilled
to discover that she, too, could actually learn to quilt!
The only fabrics she had on hand were leftover pieces from
sewing clothes for herself and her children and from making
household items such as pillows, curtains, draperies, etc.
Anxious to start immediately, she used those to make every
block in the book and was thrilled and delighted with her
Fast forward again to the year 2000
when Maria found it challenging to choose a gift for her husband
Michael's birthday. She finally came up with the idea of taking
one of his water colours and reproducing it in needlepoint.
The painting and the needlepoint now hang side by side on
the wall. While looking through all of his art work to choose
a painting, she suddenly realized that much of his work could
become the basis of new quilt patterns, some just as they
were and others with some slight changes. The idea for Maria
Michaels Designs was then born.
Evergreen Water Colour
Evergreen in Cross Stitch
To create Maria Michaels Designs,
Maria first had to learn to develop websites, which she did
with the aid of several library books. Her web site was ready
and online in January of 2002. You can read more about that
on her Maria
Michaels Designs websites. Since then, she has gone on
web sites for others.
Fast forward one last time to 2005. Maria thought about all
of the wonderfully talented quilters spread across Canada
and the United States and the need for a place where quilt
lovers and quilters could come together, the quilters to sell
and the quilt lovers to delight in viewing almost 400 quilts
and choosing the ones that warm their hearts. Quilts for
Sale was born.