Tim Latimer is a hand quilter specializing in time span quilts. He hand quilts vintage and antique quilt tops, turning something old into something new and beautiful again. Some of his work is also done using an antique treadle machine.
Kaleidoscope the very word promises surprise and magic, change and chance. Exploding with visual excitement, a kaleidoscopic design organizes an abundance of light and color, form and motion into a complex and coherent image. My goal is to harmoniously integrate the idea of a kaleidoscope with the techniques and materials of quiltmaking. I try to free myself from a conventional sense of fabric orderliness, seeking a random quality in order to imitate the succession of chance interlinkings and endless possibilities synonymous with kaleidoscopes.
I make quilts on the same block in the Bronx where I grew up. Being a New Yorker wrapped up in the fabric of city life creates an inherent paradox contrasting the traditional image of quiltmaking as part of a simple, make-do, rural way of life with my own complex urban-shaped space.
Historians have suggested that the block-style method of quiltmaking evolved in response to the cramped quarters of early American life. My family’s living arrangement in an urban environment created similar considerations which, unwittingly, I resolved in much the same way. For over twenty years, my work space in our two bedroom apartment was the forty-inch round kitchen table. A long distance view, alternate space, or not making quilts were not options. I believe this reality merged with my personality and passion for fabric in shaping the direction of my kaleidoscopic piecework, causing me to rely on intricate detail and inherent symmetry, and to invent a shape that makes the most of limited space. My block style method is based on a pie-slice section.
Until I met quilts, I thought I was creative but not talented. To ﬁnd something you love to do is a gift. To achieve recognition for it is a miracle. Whenever I got overwhelmed by a longing for functional space, complete with a door I could close, I tried to remember this.
Lives change shape. In 2003, the second bedroom of our apartment was transformed into a studio.
I was born and raised up North amongst the oaks and the apple trees in the state of Minnesota. I was fortunate to be raised surrounded by generations of my family. Growing up in the same yard as my great grandmother Lily, I can not help but be reminded of an earlier time when life was lived at a slower pace and the “simple times” and “simple cares” were of great importance. I feel blessed with warm childhood memories and hope that each piece I design reflects my enriched life.
“When I do good, I feel good… when I do bad, I feel bad… and that’s my religion.”