I just returned from three fabulous days in Bellingham, WA, attending my first quilting workshops. The workshops were put on by Two Thimbles Quilt Shop in Bellingham, and I want to say how impressed I was by the organization and planning put into this event. Kudos to Lee and her staff for doing such a fantastic job. Of course, Gwen Marston was the perfect person for me to take my first quilt workshops with. What a wonderful person she is! She shared so much knowledge and wisdom with us. She was kind, inspiring, patient, and just plain fun to be around.
The first workshop was on Saturday and it was on Small Quilts.
The emphasis on Saturday was on more traditional style small quilts. Gwen shared quite a few of her own quilts, and talked about her inspiration for each one.
After her initial talk, the quilts were put out on tables for people to study before they began their own. I fully expected I would go the traditional route, but as usual, my fabric spoke otherwise.
I took a box of solids and three bags of scraps. As I started putting scraps together, one of my tablemates pulled out a piece of fabric she didn't like and gave it to me because it looked like it would fit in. It is the piece on the left just above the red. You can see more of it along the bottom. I also used it in the piece I started in the next workshop.
This is the piece as it finished on Saturday. The photo is a bit distorted. The side borders are really the same size as the top and bottom. Traditional? Not so much. Fun? Very much.
This workshop was such an eye opener for me. The room was filled with incredibly talented and creative women who enjoyed sharing ideas, and even precious pieces from their stashes. I have been in classes with creative people before when I was painting, but this was so different. In this space, there was no hiding work when someone looked over your shoulder. Instead, there was lively discussion about what was working and what might me tried in that corner. There was no hoarding of materials as if the world would come to an end if someone touched your supplies. There was quite a bit of, "I have just the right piece of fabric for that border strip. Wait 'til I find it in my box for you." Since I became a part of the greater quilting community, I have been very impressed by the generosity and kindness of others. It was magnified in this classroom. I was assured this was the way it always is in a quilting class or retreat. I had to emerge from my hermit shell to attend this class, but because of the wonderful experience, I feel comfortable that I will emerge to do it again.
I will share photos and thoughts about the two day workshop on Liberated Medallion quilts in my next post. Until then, joyful quilting, everyone.