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Thread: My First Quilting Class

  1. #1
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    My First Quilting Class

    Was way back when - maybe 1980's? Before rotary cutters were popular and after template plastic was available.

    I learned so much - even though I had done some sewing before I took the class.

    We hand-pieced six different blocks - traced around templates - cut the fabric with scissors.

    Some of the things I learned - I traced around the hexagon pattern - my block ended up too big - so even "small" differences in an individual piece can make a big difference in the finished size of the unit or finished item. I think I was supposed to have traced the pattern exactly, not draw around it.

    - how to make a bias stem - the postage stamp basket block - still not fond of the block

    - how to hand sew intersections when piecing a block - it's useful to know

    - how to spin the intersection of the LeMoyne star

    I am sure there were other things - we did not get to the borders, layering, or binding in that class.

    I think there are advantages to learning how to hand piece - in addition to machine piecing.

  2. #2
    Super Member juliasb's Avatar
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    I have never taken a sit down and learn quilting class in the close to 30 years I have been quilting. I have watched videos, tv programs and a few demo at a quilt expo but that is about it. At the quilt expo it was not much more than a walk by being done by a vendor. I watched at my sister (21 years older than me), as she cut and stitched and made scraps into beautiful quilt tops. I never had the ability to mimic her skills. She hand pieced everything, long before rotary cutters. Once rotary cutters started and strip piecing came into being I was a quilt-a-holic! I joined a number of quilting groups on Usenet and now the internet. I made quilting buddies around the world and some of these people remain very important to me even now.
    I did learn how to cut a perfect hexi using a template and made my king size GMF, I use that as my avatar here. I gifted that quilt to my oldest daughter. I don't even know if she still has it. If I make another it will be for myself. I am no longer afraid to try something new. I try to be careful so I don't get frustrated but I am still a quilt-a-holic and have a stash that will out live me.
    I only wish I could take a quilting class. They always sound like a lot of fun!

  3. #3
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    I never took class till I did a lone star quilt. that was about 30 quits in. I was self taught. I used cardboard for templates, didn't know plastic existed. by the time I was 20, I had this grand idea. I had one of those clothing cutting boards. I cut it into 2 1/2" 3" and so on till 8" at every 1/2". I laid it down on the fabric, and drew a line, thenn kept on doing it till I had enough to strip piece. I thought it was a wonderful idea. About 8 or so quilts in, was a 6 pointed star, doen with what is called a "GEM" I had a hexagon in the ctr. and diamonds holding them together. it took me about 3 yrs to finish. I used all my clothing scraps. Mostly 100% cotton. I can't wear polyester clothing, it makes me itch, another reason I made all my own cloths. I also strip quilted. sewing a row together and then hand quilting it. I found out years later, that that was a class I was signing up for. I already knew it. I remember going to a quilt show in the 80's and a man selling rotary cutters. I loved the idea, but the price was prohibitive. now I have all sorts of rotary cutting devices. we've come a long way baby!
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  4. #4
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    I took my first class in 1972, way before rotary cutters were invented. It took me 14 years to finish my first quilt because it was so boring! Trace around the template, cut it with scissors, sew on the pencil line, etc. What a joy when I could cut more than one piece at a time!

  5. #5
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    That sounds a lot like my first quilting class and I'm glad I learned it that way.
    Funny thing- last night I watched a free Jinny Beyer video on Bluprint. She hand pieces and hand quilts all her work.
    It brought back memories of my first class but to be honest I wouldn't enjoy hand piecing anymore. I love hand quilting though. I find it very relaxing.
    Her quilts are stunning.

  6. #6
    Super Member Watson's Avatar
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    My first class was 2 years ago and it was less than impressive! I was quite disappointed in fact. It was supposed to be a "Feathers" class, but ended up being a "modern feathers" class and it was just a waste of time. It taught me to check on the class curriculum a lot closer next time.
    Then, I discovered that Patsy Thompson was coming to the quilt guild in nearby Michigan and I knew she wouldn't disappoint...and I was right. Now those were feathers! I still refer to her notes and the samples I did in her class.
    Those are the only two classes I've ever taken, but I am signed up at Paducah for a class on Value and Colour and for a ThreadPainting class at the Michigan guild in November, so my education continues!

    Watson

  7. #7
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    My daughter and I took the Free Motion Boot Camp class....it was great! Since my daughter had never tried free motion, she took to it like a pro. The instructor just bragged on her....I was amazed. I have been sewing and quilting for years and could not come close to her beautiful FM....so you see how hung up we can be in quilting habits.....the novice was free in her thinking and listening to every word of the instructor. "Mom, this is fun" came out her mouth so many times. I was so proud of her and her work. She is 40, full of life, no quilting inhibitions and it showed in her work. Now she uses FM all the time.

  8. #8
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    Susieqoh, i remembr back in the late '70's, looking thru a magazine and seeing one of Jinny Beyer's first quilts. It was called Ray of Light. it was marvelous! she told in the articcle that she was ambidexterous, She said it was helpful becuse something has spilled on her quilt and she needed it for a contest. She cut and sewed everything by hand and using templates. I still do on times. I'm into hexies and EPP. if you haven't tried it, you must. it's addicting.
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  9. #9
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    Lynnie, I love EPP- we've tallked about it but maybe you forgot. I just don't like regular hand piecing but love EPP. I just ordered a kit from Paperpieces. Forgot the name of it but it's a great pattern. I like to work on hand projects while watching TV or going away etc.

    Yes, Ray of Light is gorgeous. She is so talented in a lot of ways. Her color knowledge is impressive. My son lives in VA and one of these times I'm going to go to her shop.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Watson View Post
    My first class was 2 years ago and it was less than impressive! I was quite disappointed in fact. It was supposed to be a "Feathers" class, but ended up being a "modern feathers" class and it was just a waste of time. It taught me to check on the class curriculum a lot closer next time.
    Then, I discovered that Patsy Thompson was coming to the quilt guild in nearby Michigan and I knew she wouldn't disappoint...and I was right. Now those were feathers! I still refer to her notes and the samples I did in her class.
    Those are the only two classes I've ever taken, but I am signed up at Paducah for a class on Value and Colour and for a ThreadPainting class at the Michigan guild in November, so my education continues!

    Watson
    Where in Michigan does the quilt guild meet? What is the name of the quilt guild?

  11. #11
    Super Member Irishrose2's Avatar
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    My only quilting class was one evening on FMQ. It was not successful. I had previously taught sewing classes at JoAnn's and I'm sure the participants got more out of my classes than I did from the FMQ class.

  12. #12
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    My first quilting class was in the mid 80's. I did the cardboard templates, scissors, etc. But, the instructor taught us to make the sandwich from the individual finished squares. And then hand quilt the squares. Attach each square to each other by putting right sides together and sewing on the 1/4" seam allowance. The seam allowance on the back was flipped under and hand stitched closed. Phew, what a chore.

  13. #13
    Super Member ptquilts's Avatar
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    My only instruction was a one hour hand quilting lesson with Nancy Halpern, back in 1978. I could not figure out how to do it from books (before the days of videos). Of course I knew how to sew, from making clothes. I taught my DH how to use the machine, and he did all the machine work and cutting. He was good at math so could make his own patterns. I could never get him to use a rotary cutter but I have recently started using them and love it!!

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