Monday, August 7, 2017

Carolyn and Amy

I got to kick off my summer with workshops by two wonderful creative minds, Carolyn Friedlander and Amy Friend. A few days after the St. Louis Quilt Market, Carolyn stopped by the LQS where I work for a workshop on machine quilting. It was a modified version of the one I took with her at QuiltCon, so I mostly sat in on this one as an observer, but it was still so fun. She started off with a show and tell of some of her quilts, discussing the quilting on each and her thoughts behind her quilting choices. Her new Eads quilt is oh so lovely.
The quilting shows so well on the back of the quilt, with its light Architextures crosshatch fabric.
Her Catenary quilt has lots of examples of how she uses different quilting motifs in each part of a quilt. The crosshatch in the outside borders sets them off so nicely.
That evening, she had a trunk show down in the shop, and we all got to admire more of her beauties and just chat. She is such a delightful person. So kind and full of ideas, which she readily shares.
She actually taught a workshop at my LQS about two years ago, shortly before the shop had moved to its current location. That workshop was where I first learned to do needle-turn applique, and it was based on her Catenary quilt. The original quilt was traveling in shows at the time, so we didn't get to see it, which made its appearance this time a special treat.
A few weeks later, the St. Louis MQG brought in Amy Friend (@duringquiettime) for a trunk show/lecture and two workshops. Her lecture was so interesting and informative. She was great at talking through the ideas and inspirations behind her designs, as well as every little detail, from the fabric to the quilting.
I was a student in her first workshop, which used the techniques from her second book, Improv Paper Piecing. My design was based on an offset diamond, and I jumped right in with some bright solids.
I managed to finish four blocks during class, and this project is high on my list of works in progress to get back to. We took time in the second half of class to talk about layouts, and I have several I want to try once I have a few more blocks to play with.
On Sunday, I sat in on the second workshop, which focused on large-scale paper piecing, specifically stripes. It was great to hear some more of her tips and lots of fun to see the students' work come together.
As a guild officer, I got to spend some extra one-on-one time with Amy, and she is a treasure. So sweet and soft spoken but with a wealth of knowledge to share. It was lovely to host her.

It always a great experience to hear others talk through their own creative journeys and how they think about and deal with designing. You can't help but walk away inspired.

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