From Chauffer to Quilter

He went from chauffeuring his wife to quilting venues to doing his own quilting. Meet Daryl McVey. I met the McVey’s last month at the Shawnee Quilt show.

Daryl is retired. At least that’s what he claims.  True, he is retired from going to a job five days a week, drawing a weekly/monthly wage, and receiving benefits. But honestly, are any of us, especially quilters ever really retired?

We are also working on a quilt, either creating the top, stitching the quilt together, or planning the quilt, or looking for fabric. We’re always working, and sometimes we take paying jobs to help fund our habit, sometimes we make and sell crafts, or we sell our quilting expertise to help promote our passion.  Daryl helps fund his hobby with a Handyman Service.

His handyman jobs allow him to help others, not only in accomplishing a goal, but in keeping his prices affordable. This job allows him to work when he can, and most important take off work when necessary.  After all not all quilt shows are in his backyard, he needs time to travel to and enjoy some of the shows.

In fact, traveling a distance to shows is how he became involved in quilting.  He started as a chauffeur, money provider, purchase carrier, and quilt show companion for his wife.  He drove her to shows and workshops around Oklahoma and Kansas. While at the shows, he naturally viewed the quilts on exhibit. He also attended some of the workshops offered. After all, he was there why not sit down and listen?

After a few years of attending shows, and classes they purchased a long-arm for his wife. It made sense to them to make the purchase.  Still, Daryl didn’t feel a need to jump into the quilting pool.

A few more months passed, he watched as his wife stitched  tops together, then quilted them. Soon, the movements of his wife, combined with the voices from the workshops replaying in his head led him to try his hand at quilting.

When he started his first quilt, he didn’t take a specific class. Instead he sifted through all the information he’d stored from previous classes and workshops.  While he made a few mistakes on that first quilt, and it’s still waiting to be finished, he learned from it and has gone on to make several quilts.

The quilt above he called “The Dagwood Quilt” because of the novelty Dagwood cartoon fabric that plays an important part.  The pattern is actually the disappearing nine-patch, planned with the assistance of Oklahoma quilt artist, Paula Nelson.  It was a simple matter of sewing squares together, cutting them, and sewing them again.  But, the careful planning,  makes it look much more complicated. Here’s another close up shot of it:

Daryl also exhibited an owl Kaleidoscope quilt. This is a slightly more complicated quilt as the blocks include the octagon shape.  This is his own interpretation.


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