Kerry Hockham

I learnt to to knit and sew from a young age, completing my first jumper for my brother at the age of 8 years old. I was also keen on doing tapestries and cross stitch many of which I still have. I trained as a professional musician (oboe and cor anglais) and moved from my hometown, Sydney, Australia to London UK in the 80's.

When my mother retired she took up quilting and smocking. Just before she passed away, she sent me an unfinished hand quilted bed quilt in Australian heritage style with a note attached to it saying 'Kerry, I am leaving this to you as you are the only one of the girls that will finish it'. It sits in its special bag and every now and then I would take it out, look at it and put it back, not knowing where to start.

7 years ago I moved to the USA with my husband for a time. Needing something more to do, especially during the long snow bound winters, I took my first quilting lesson. I thought I was mad - who takes perfectly wonderful fabric, cuts it up into little pieces and then sews it back together again? I was hooked and now have more machines, including a Longarm.

We lived not far from Amish country and was privileged to see their work, shop in their fabric stores and admire their 'traditional style'. Though I am starting to lean to more contemporary work.

My signature colours are red, white and black. I work with a lot of Japanese fabrics and also collect vintage kimono which I also incorporate into different items. I also make a lot of charity quilts and handbags as well as incorporating embroidery into my work.

We moved back to the UK and are getting sorted including building my studio to house my macines which includes a Longarm.

As for my mother's quilt, you ask? Well, it is still in its special bag; every now and then I get it out, look at it, find her notes, scratch my head and carefully fold it back up, place it back in the bag saying to myself, maybe later I will feel up for the challenge.

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