Well, I am going to try this for the third time today. I just lost this blog … again! So, now there are two of them out somewhere floating in the outer regions of the web. This is a new domain, and it has been somewhat frustrating to say the least. Oh, well … here we go again.
This morning when I started out, it was sunny and warm in Calgary. Now it is overcast and it looks like it might rain. Sabrina came to town for a few days before she leaves for The Philippines for 5 months, so we spent the afternoon shopping (of course), although we both behaved quite well and didn’t spend that much money. I ended up with a new pair of sandals (not bad!).
As I was saying both previous times, the last two days at Pearson College I taught a workshop on “Lettering, Transferring and Painting” on fabric. The handouts were well received, but the tags were a hit!
We were assigned to the Chem Lab and the Math Class, across from each other. We had the building all to ourselves, and commandeered the men’s bathroom, modified it by placing a sign that said “Ladies” on the door, so we wouldn’t have to climb up the stairs each time. Not that there were that many men around … The class was large enough for us to be able to accommodate all the wet samples on countertops and leave them out to dry. And we set up sewing machines in the Math class well away from water and paint. We were a small group and had ample room to work in.
The first day of the class, we spent time making the transfers and most of the “wet” work: we transferred with gel medium on fabric and on paper, used molding paste through a stencil, made face-to-face and gel skins with gel medium, and used the alcohol pens. We also painted fusible web and set it out to dry.
On the second day we made use of the sewing machines. Each student picked a poem or quote of their choice and an image. We transferred the image onto fabric, and practiced writing the poem/quote on paper first, without lifting the pen, imitating the movement of the needle. Once that was practiced, we marked the fabric and used the sewing machines with free motion quilting to write the poem / quote onto the fabric (already layered with batting and backing). We would laugh from time to time when we heard anbehind, or misspelled a word.
I learned this technique from Catherine Nicholls, from Vancouver, who talked about it in DMTV (Design Matters TV), Laura and Linda Kemshall’s program. If you haven’t heard of it, I encourage you to give them a try. The techniques they talk about and show are varied and very interesting. They are the authors of The Painted Quilt (book and DVD) and of Thr3fold. I will tell you more about that on another blog.
Below are some photos of the results. This sample below, with the blue poppy, has a poem written with a yellowy colored thread. The poppy was quilted and painted after the writing was done. I am hoping to see photos of it bound and finished, or turned into a pillowcase. She did a great job with it.
The next sample shows a few of the different techniques we tried, on a yellow background: an alcohol transfer, some foiling, painted fusible web (which unfortunately didn’t work as well as I hoped. I was thinking that we left it out in the sun to dry, and that may have dried the fusible a bit too much so it wouldn’t fuse … I will have to try that and see if that’s the reason. Otherwise, the fusible could have been old, but it worked in my sample, so …?). Doesn’t it look lovely … imagine the possibilities.
Aside from the classes, at Quilting in the Trees we play games in the evening after dinner to mix and mingle and get to know each other. Those were lots of fun this time around. I really enjoyed them.
We had a trunk show by a couple of talented ladies and their group who get together and produce, produce and produce some more. The quilts were lovely and varied in technique and color. These ladies have challenges, make mystery quilts, and charity quilts, bags and everything in between. I specially enjoyed the stories of their travels across the border fabric shopping.
Aside from all that, we get together to eat, of course, in the cafeteria. The Saturday evening dinner was amazing. We had roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, creamy mashed potatoes, vegetables, a couple of salads, and .. cakes: carrot cake, cheesecake, hazelnut cake, chocolate cake and something else I can’t remember. I ended up with a lovely plate of fresh fruit (compliments of a gluten intolerance).
All in all, it was a great time at Quilting in the Trees at Pearson College. Next year it is their 25th anniversary, so they are planning something special. You can always become a member of the guild, so you can attend the Retreat. Well worth it, I’d say.
A special thanks to Carol for inviting me again, to Shirley for the organization, and to Judy, who got stuck again with picking me up at the airport. We missed each other for a while there … but were reunited in the end and had a lovely lunch to celebrate.
Thank you also to Susan Purney Marks who shared the room with me for those three nights. It was good to get to know you and spend time with you. Hope our paths cross again soon.
Now I am going to try and see if I am successful in having this article appear on my website. Have a good evening, and until I blog again, keep quilting.