Saturday, September 29, 2012

Update on Des Moines Teaching

I am sorry to report that due to injuries to my hands that  I sustained earlier in the week in rescuing my cat Oliver from a very serious household accident I will be unable to teach at the AQS Des Moines Show this week. 

I apologize to all the quilters who have signed up and were looking forward to time with me to improve their quilting.  ER doctors as well as my internist have assessed the damage to my thumbs and hands and said I must rest them until healing is complete or risk further damage to nerves.   I am on a strong antibiotic cocktail of several meds and the side effects are also giving me some serious symptoms.

Travel would be too difficult and I can't use my hands normally now.  No scissors, picking anything up, much less actual quilting at the machine are in my future for awhile.

Oliver is doing well after surgery.  I hope you all understand that accidents just jump out at you from nowhere and happen to all of us despite our best intentions to fulfill our obligations. 

AQS has found another teacher, Joanie Poole,  to fill in at very short notice and she will do her best for you.  Take a look at her work at  Her students have given her excellent reviews. 

Please send some healing thoughts my way, and thanks for understanding.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Classes at AQS Show in Des Moines

"The Fine Art of Echo Quilting" ~ Warm-up exercise

My classes in the upcoming AQS show in Des Moines Oct. 3-6 are almost filled.  Thanks everyone for signing up, and I hope you will love what I have to share with you about machine quilting on a home sewing machine.

The photo above shows one of our warm-up exercises for echo quilting to get you comfy and ready to do some more challenging quilting.

Sometimes these warm-ups turn out so well students have gone on and used them in quilts, with pretty threads, as focal point quilting.  Some have expanded them to fill entire spaces around other designs as wavy, lyrical background quilting instead.  Once you get the hang of even echoes and even stitches, it's fun and easy to do this.

Remember, don't "lazy susan" or turn your quilt sample, even if it is small enough to do so.  You'll be at a loss when you quilt a larger quilt in a home machine and cannot turn it.  It's best to learn right from the start to quilt in all directions, deal with the visibility problems you face in a home sewing machine, learn to adjust machine speed so you don't overshoot or make mistakes in blind spots.  And there will always be blind spots.

This little sample is not perfect, lines are not perfectly spaced, it was done in a class as a demo. You don't have to have perfection to create something beautiful and unique. Instead of making a new sample to show you here that would be a bit better, I used this one so you will feel confident about class, and look forward to coming and exploring quilting with me.

There are a few openings left in "It's Bananas," a 3-hour class that will focus on this design, below, that many have tried from my Quilt Savvy book.  If you want to perfect it, get it to look its best, this class is for you. 

Beautiful Bananas

However, it is also for those of you who simply want to improve all your quilting designs, as much of what I will share with you is what I've learned over the years working with so many talented quilters who have taken my classes.  These important things will be included in all my classes to help you improve your own free motion quilting, be more at ease and more confident.  I want you to love your own quilting.

To register for this class, go to this weblink at AQS.

Fall is in the air here finally and quilting is as well.  I'm packing my teaching samples, preparing handouts, and planning my trip to Des Moines.  I hope to see many of you there, even if you aren't in my class, please say hi.

Keep quilting!  Your work gets better every day,