Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Half Square Triangles

Whenever I teach a quilt class I bring along a suitcase full of examples for the students to see and be inspired by. Often I decide to make a new example or finish up a quilt top that would perfectly explain the concept I'll be teaching.

Baby Quilt with Prairie Points
This quilt is tied at the intersections of the blocks
Inspired by a quilt my friend Gail made.
24" x 32"

That's what happened when I taught the Half Square Triangle class a few weeks ago. I had started to make the blocks for this quilt (shown below) several years ago. I had made 8 of the same type of blocks at a quilting retreat. A few years later, I had made several other blocks of stars using the same fabrics. Part 3 was to sew them together and make 4 more blocks to finish the top.

To get away from a seam line along the longer horizontal strips of sashing, I decided to add a few friendship stars. I have no more of that dark blue fabric so at some point I will have to buy something different to use as a border. I don't always sew on a border for my quilts but this one needs one.

This week, I made two small quilts using 30's reproduction fabrics. The pin wheel blocks were already made to use in the Half Square Triangle class as example blocks to create different designs.

I added a border on this patchwork
Prairie Points are pretty but lots of work.
I will be layering it and quilting it using diagonal lines

I like to teach technique classes, like this one, and not actual pattern classes. I want the students to express themselves and not copy someone else's patterns. There are still some spots left in some of the classes I am teaching this November. Click here to check out the schedule.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

I Promise

I promise I will not check my cell phone messages or Face Book status during our class.

I promise to mind the clock so that 5 minutes before the class ends I won’t throw all final instructions at you and confuse you.

I promise to start the class on time and not half an hour late.

I promise to end the class at the scheduled time and not go over by 2 to 3 hours.

I promise I won’t make you run around town looking for supplies that are not really necessary for the class.

I promise to share all my tips for the project and not holdback the best ideas for myself.

I promise not to squash your creativity and impose my colour choice on you.

I promise not to talk down to you when you ask a question just because I am knowledgable on the subject.

I promise to give you more that just 'reading the pattern' to you.

I promise I will not sew my own projects during the class.

I promise to have my samples made and ready and not sew them up while I should be walking around helping you.

I promise to make my classes fun and inspirational.

As students you shouldn’t settle for anything less!!!

During the last two years, I have taken a number of classes, not necessarily sewing workshops, and all the above were things I observed in the classes I took. Needless to say there are some places I won’t go back to. Remember as a paying consumer you do have influence!

I am teaching several quilt classes this Fall. Click here to view the calendar.

Apple for the teacher

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Radiation Exhibit in France

A friend of mine from Verona was in France this September for the 20th anniversary of the Carrefour Européen du Patchwork in Alsace, France.

Waves, 2014
part of Radiation
I had a piece in the Radiation exhibit.

She said it was one of the more popular exhibits at the 4-day event. Lots of visitors and impressed viewers.

There are 80 pieces in this exhibit. The exhibit will be going to the Czech Republic next April.

I have blogged about making this piece before. To read more about it click here and here.

Friday, October 3, 2014


I wasn't sure what to call this post but PERSONALITY I think is right.

When you make a quilt where does your personality come through? (No where if you are making a quilt from a kit!)

If you are expressing yourself your person is everywhere- in your colour choice, in your placement of blocks and shapes, in your fabric selection (which I hope is yours and not the lady's from the quilt shop!)

Even in this traditional red and white pattern made by hand, the personality of the maker can come through! In this case I'd say it is in the back fabric choice.

I see a sense of humour in the person who made this cotton quilt. The back is playful. I have several antique quilts in my collection that have a plain white backing which would have worked perfectly fine for this quilt... but not as fun!

It is an antique quilt from a friend's cottage in Nova Scotia.

Sadly there is no label. No one in her family knows who made it and when. She has a complete cupboard full ...all anonymous.

I see those unlabelled quilts without an anchor, without a place in the past. I see them floating and  hovering not attached to anyone.

A name and a date is all you need to write. It's so important.