Linda Schmidt, Fabric Artist
I come from a long line of quilting women and started my first quilt when I was eight years old, my first garment when I was 10, and have been quilting and garment making ever since. I recently retired from the City of Dublin, but still teach quilting and wearable art online and in person, exhibit, speak, teach workshops and judge quilting. I am a mother, a musician, and an active member of my quilting guild; I was a charter member of the Network for Wearable Art and served on the Alameda County Art Commission for 6 years. In my spare time, I read voraciously, hike, and write really bad poetry.
I have won lots of awards for quilting and garment making – but that’s not why I make them. The main reason I make quilts is that once I get a vision of a quilt in my head, it haunts me until I make it real. I make quilts because quilts are my Art and fabric is my medium. Quilts are made from bits and pieces of the fabric of life, sewn together to make a whole that is far greater than the sum of its parts – for those parts were once a daughter’s dress, or a Grandma’s apron, or the robe a priest wore to celebrate Easter mass. The quilts made from those fabrics connect us with all the people that wore them or used them or made them; they connect me with my mother and grandmother and great-grandmother because we all make quilts to keep our children warm and to create the Art that keeps us whole. It’s all connected for me in quilting – the fabric, the tradition, the making and doing, the learning and trying, all caught up in the attempt to make Art that moves and stretches, challenges and changes.
I make quilts because I believe they are important, in and of themselves. Like most people, I know that I’m never, personally, going to make it to the Olympics or find a cure for cancer or bring about world peace – but I can make quilts, and so can you. In making quilts, we fill empty spaces with beauty and empty hands with comfort, and that is more than a lot of people will ever attempt to do. Mother Theresa once said, “We can do no great things – only small things with great love.” That’s our job, that’s what we’re here for ‑ to make small things with great love.
The bottom line is that there is nothing I like better than quilting. I have an eclectic taste in quilts and quilters, an insatiably inquiring mind, and a sincere desire to help others learn what they need to know in order to do what needs to be done.
Linda S. Schmidt, 7695 Sunwood Drive, Dublin, CA 94568 (925) 829-4329,