by, 07-31-2012 at 12:01 AM (647 Views)
I took a six hour class with Rami Kim at the Augusta Quilt Show recently and am now finishing off the bag pattern we started. One small section calls for an 18" x 24" piece to be hand smocked on a 1/2 inch grid and, wouldn't you know, there doesn't seem to be a heat transfer pattern available in that size - they all appear to be rectangular designs, suitable for vertical pleating, which isn't what I need.
Rami was charming and showed us several fabric folding techniques but said, half way through the session, that this was normally a 2-day course, so there was no hope of finishing the bag and, back at home, I found the written pattern we got leaves out quite a bit. There was a very brief verbal explanation of how to put the bag together right at the end of the class but no advice on the size of beads we should use, the type of thread for sewing them on or even how to sew beads to fabric. Maybe she thought we would all know. It's a good job I know how to construct a basic bag.
I took two other classes. One with Mickey Depre which was very laid back - go-at-your-own-speed - see-me-when-you-reach-this-bit - sort of approach. From the quirky applique designs she produces I'd imagined her with mad coloured hair and perhaps a tattoo or two but no, she would have blended in as a group member if she hadn't stood at the front of the class. I've got, as she promised, 90% of her project done and just need to decide if it's going to be a pillow or a small wall hanging.
Then there was Linda J Hahn who is quite a character - Staten Island and New Jersey rolled into one zany package. I did her Junk to Jems class which was a quick pattern that blends 4.5" and 2.5" squares into a 'foolproof' scrappy quilt. I made seven blocks with a lot of scarlet and purple that somehow go perfectly well together when surrounded by pale greens, yellows plus a loud black and green pattern. Doesn't it sound like it should be horrible ? It isn't; it's going to be very vibrant. I may give it to my aunt for her 85th birthday - she said she likes 'anything'.
So it was a good weekend and I got a lot done. I also saw some amazing quilts - I'd love to get to that standard, or even have the imagination of some of the quilt makers, but upping my skill set that much would take more years than I have left.