Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Australasian Quilters Convention 2012

I'm back from AQC where I enjoyed alternate exhausting rounds of quilts, classes, functions and shopping.  Phew!

Although I've visited AQC in the past as a guest, this year was my first time as a delegate.  I did 3 classes over 4 days as well as attending a cocktail party, lecture, gala dinner and managed a bit of shopping as well.

Vikki Pignatelli - Crazy about Curves
This was my first class, which went over 2 days.  I was expecting to learn traditional curved piecing, you know with the pins and the easing etc.  I don't know why I thought this, as obviously I didn't read the class blurb very well, because that is the exact opposite of what Vikki teaches.

Vikki teaches a free form style of curved piecing, stress free, error free where any mistake can be fixed and the results are simply stunning.

Vikki Pignatelli helps outs some of the students.....

Vikki is an extraordinary teacher - infinitely patient and supremely talented.  I will admit to finding parts of the technique challenging, (folding freezer paper to a smooth curve) only then to find that fixing errors is extremely simple. 

The students produced a wide variety of work
You can get a close look at Vikki Pignatelli's work on her website http://www.vikkipignatelli.com/default.htm Although I did struggle a little in the close confines of the class, I purchased Vikki's book so I can explore her method in more relaxed surroundings at home.

Machine Applique Techniques with Deborah Louie
In this one day class, Deb managed to thoroughly cover several techniques - invisible applique, curved applique, free motion raw edge applique, blanket stitch applique, and using decorative machine stitches.  Is there nothing this girl doesn't know about quilting?  You can read more about Deborah Louie here on her blog - http://deblouie.blogspot.com.au/ .

Deb shows us how it's done........

happy students......

I actually finished a workshop piece....!

The generous and talented Deborah Louie

See that gorgeous quilt Deb is standing next to?  She gave all the students a free copy of the pattern as well as full size pattern for another quilt.  I love the blue/black/yellow colourway - I'm really tempted to make this quilt - love it!

At the end of June I have booked into a 3 day Free Motion Quilting Masterclass with Deborah when she comes down to Tasmania.  I expect to work hard and get fantastic results for my efforts.

William de Morgan with Michele Hill
My third class was another applique lesson, this time with Michele Hill.  I adore Michele's William Morris patterns and have already started on another piece from her book.  I didn't really need to take a class as I already understand the technique, but there is something to be said for learning direct from the author.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

My first Retreat! - A workshop with Marlene King

A couple of weeks ago I was privileged to attend a workshop with the multi-talented, multi award-winning textile artist and quilter Marlene King.  You can see some of Marlene's extraordinary work on her website here - http://www.thefabricpalette.com/.

Marlene came out of retirement to teach this workshop, and even better, there were only 2 students - myself and my friend Diana Eaton.  The retreat was held over 3 days at Bengeo Retreat in beautiful Deloraine in northern Tasmania.

The subject of the workshop was to be landscapes.  Usually Marlene sets the project from which to learn the techniques, but this time we were asked to bring a photo of our own to work from.  I chose a picture of myself and hubby riding a camel along Broom's Cable Beach at sunset.  How gorgeous are those colours?

That's me and John on the middle camel

Diana and I were delighted when Marlene decided to hang up a different quilt each day - to inspire us and to point out different techniques she had used.  A very generous teacher, Marlene also said she would be happy to teach us any of the techniques we wanted to learn.

Marlene and Travels

The quilt Marlene is standing next to (and was hanging right next to me all day - that's my sewing machine right there) is a multi-award winning quilt named Travels, which has won the Tasmanian Best of Show, the Australian Quilt Convention Melbourne National, and most recently, second place Innovative at the World Quilt Show XV.  Phew!

My favourite of the 3 was this one -
How beautiful are these quilts?

Day 1 - bobbin work, background piecing and making fern leaves

Day 2 - design

Diana gets expert advice

Fabric selection - I brought heaps cause you never know............

By the end of Day 2 I was finally getting somewhere

Day 3 - Piecing....

Thread painting

Ok, this is as far as I've got.  There is still thread painting to finish and I need to decide on a border, or extending the piecing or maybe something entirely different........

Using a technique by Caroline Sharkey, I made 'fabric' from scraps and bits and pieces to add to the edges of this piece. 

but haven't decided whether to use them or not.  I do rather like the effect though......

Then I have to learn how to make a faced edging.

Anyway, that's what I've been up to.  Tomorrow I'm off again, this time to do 3 workshops over 4 days at the Australian Quilt Convention where I'm booked to learn Curved piecing with Vikki Pignatelli, Applique Techniques with Deborah Louie and William Morris applique with Michele Hill.  Whoopee!