Mary Hitchens

Mary Hitchens
Mary Hitchens

I began my new life in 1988. All things dressmaking and knitting done prior to this are now spoken about as "in my other life" or "in a previous life".  Patchwork and quilting quickly became an obsession for someone who had never heard about it ever until I was booked into a class by a friend, with Di Ford at Primarily Patchwork, Canterbury.  The rest is history.

My loves are all things hand done.  Applique by needle turn, reverse, blanket stitch, layered cut back etc. Hand and paper piecing also feature in my work along with a deep love of reproduction and hexagon quilts.  Hand quilting is where I find my peace and I do both rocking and stab methods. I am generally happy to use someone else’s pattern as for me the pleasure is in the choosing of fabrics and the making.  Having said that, I am happy to design my own quilts for a special need. I am proud to have one such quilt in the Mary Mackillop Museum in Sydney. It is now part of the Art Collection depicting the life of Saint Mary of the Cross Mackillop.

My other great love is Quilt Study.  I love the quilts of North England and Wales during the 1800’s and the early 1900’s.  I enjoy seeing how these quilts and styles moved across the Atlantic and changed with time. Studying fabrics and quilt styles right up till today is not only pleasurable, it keeps the brain active and friendships made are a great benefit and support.  Fabric collecting is mandatory as is adding to my book collection which has a wide variety of applique, hand quilting, history, techniques and quilt judging.  I also have books for reference on technique/styles I may never make, but it is good to have a broad understanding of what is happening in the world of patchwork and quilting.

Sometimes I wonder what my life might have been like if I hadn’t stumbled across this wonderful life.  It does not bear thinking about as there are too many quilts to make, too many books to read and too many Exhibitions, classes etc. to do.  I hope Heaven has a grand section for us all simply called “Patchwork Heaven”.


Guilds & Associations

Victorian Quilters Inc.
The Applique Guild of Australia Inc.
Patchwork and Quilters Guild of Victoria
Australian Quilters Association
National Quilting Association of Ohio
American Quilting Society, Paducah
The Applique Society