Paula Chamberlain who hosts the A Quilter’s Life podcast, reached out to me a few weeks ago, and we were able to schedule a time for an interview. We have all heard that every quilt tells a story, and Paula believes that every quilter has a story. Her goal is to capture details about what inspires and drives the quilting passion of each quilter to create a time capsule that would allow future generations to know more about us. I had a lovely time chatting with her, and I hope you enjoy getting to listen to my podcast episode (which is also embedded below for your listening convenience).
If you would like to have your story recorded by Paula, you can sign up to for your own interview with her using the A Quilter’s Life Calendly page. Once you schedule a time, please make a note that you were referred by me to help Paula plan.
Typical questions that Paula might cover include:
- Background (think of things you want your friends and family, even generations from now, to know about you)
- Where were you born and raised?
- A special childhood memory
- Employment – Why did you choose this career?
- Where do you live now and how did you get there from where you were born and raised?
- Besides quilting, what other crafts do you do or have you done?
- What other hobbies do you enjoy (examples: backing, cooking, gardening, sports)
- Who introduced you to quilting?
- What’s your favorite quilt?
- Do you have a favorite tool?
- What’s your favorite part of the quilting process (design, cut, piece, sandwich, quilt, bind, etc.)?
- What was your worst quilting experience?
- Why do you make quilts? Whats draws you to this craft rather than using your time on other things?
- Who do you make quilts for?
- What are you working on now?
- Describe your sewing space
- Quilting tip
I mention in the podcast that I worked as a civil servant at NASA Kennedy Space Center. One of the many projects I was a part of was working on bipod bolt analysis work for STS-114, which was the Return to Flight launch of Space Shuttle Discovery after the Columbia accident. The Columbia accident was due to foam coming off of the external tank bipod strut and impacting the leading edge reinforced carbon carbon heat shield of Columbia during the launch. During the Return to Flight phase of work at NASA, many engineers poured over lots of details and we made as many changes and improvements as possible. The foam on the bipod strut was removed, and the torque requirements of all of the bolts on the connection were reviewed in detail. These photographs are of me with Discovery in the Vehicle Assembly Building on April 6, 2005, after it was “stacked” and before it was rolled out to the launch pad (during the bolt analysis time frame).
Working around delicate flight hardware can mean that space is limited. One of the big challenges of the bipod strut is getting the bolts preloaded with enough torque without slipping and damaging either the foam of the external tank (which is creamy orange in the photo above) or the delicate heat shield tiles on the underside of the shuttle (which is black on the right behind all the ground service equipment). Also note that my engagement and wedding rings had to be secured with Kapton tape. If anything comes off and falls in either the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) or at the launch pad, it can damage sensitive hardware down below.
STS-114 launched on July 26, 2005, and landed on August 9, 2005, after having spent just under 14 days in space.