“She’d make clothes for us … she would make me Barbie clothes,” Price warmly remembered.
Yet when her close decorative-painting friends wanted to start a new quilting hobby she wasn’t interested! “Quilts! What do I need a quilt for?” she recalls telling her friends.
That recollection was part of a 2009 essay that won her an all-expenses paid trip to Utah to learn how to use her new HQ18 Avante quilting machine.
“They got into quilting ... I fought it tooth and nail,” she said. “Too expensive.” Plus she already had enough invested in her paints, woodwork and other crafts.
The birth of her granddaughter Madeleine Price four years ago changed all that. Now she was ready to sew again. First she bought an embroidery machine, but one of the few places to find fabric was at a quilting store. “There are only so many dresses you can make for little girls,” Susan Price said. “So I started making quilt blocks.”
The science instructional program manager for grades 6 to 12 for the St. Mary Parish School System said, “I don’t have time to hand quilt,” she said. Her job keeps her busy.
She and her husband of 30-years, Edward, took a trip to the Houston International Quilt Festival in 2009 to see which quilting machine would fit her needs. The one she already owned was too cumbersome. As her technical advisor, Edward Price would check out all the electrical and electronic components while she browsed the useful aspects of the machine.
Once she got her HQ18, she was eager to learn more about using it. So she decided to enter the essay contest that could land the winner a free trip to a quilting seminar. The three-day seminar included contestants being taped, pictures taken and the creation of a video for display at www.handiquilter.com. Her video is still located there under “Look Who Uses HQ Quilting Machines.”
“We were all really nervous,” the Berwick resident said. “They selected us primarily based on the machines that we owned, how long we had been quilting, a lot of us were new quilters, and also demographics.”
Susan Price is also showcased in full-page ads for Handi Quilter in numerous quilting magazines. Her first ad was presented in the January 2012 edition of McCall’s Quilting. Most recently her ad is on the back inside cover of the October/November issue of McCall’s QuickQuilts.
Even though she came into her new hobby after her children, Megan Price Crochet and Ryan Price, were grown, she keeps busy quilting for family and clients she receives through referrals from the Quilt Cupboard in Morgan City.
Her most inspirational work came as a member of the Sew Happy Quilters Guild in Morgan City. A fellow member had been re-diagnosed with cancer. “Each person did a flower, they called it ‘Becky’s Flowers,’ kind of a tulip looking flower that Ms. Sally Frickey had designed,” she said. “They put the quilt together and asked me to quilt it.” Unfortunately, her guild friend would lose her battle with cancer.
That project led her to do a similar quilt. “I had a painting friend from Maine, I found out a couple of weeks later she had breast cancer,” Susan Price said. “I embroidered a little label on the back that said, ‘Even though I can’t be with you, know that my prayers and love are keeping you warm.’”
Although she has worked on more than 40 quilts for customers, her most memorable quilts have been for charities. She has sewn on Quilts for Valor with members of the Happy Quilters Guild, done raffle quilts for Boy Scouts and provided work on baby quilts for Adullam House, a safe haven for children of incarcerated parents.
Many generations to come will be kept a little warmer thanks to her talent.