Yesterday I went to a beginner's machine piecing class at a local quilt shop. I was so excited when I first signed up and then by yesterday morning, I was kinda...not really dreading it...just not looking forward to it as much. I think a little social anxiety that kicks in sometimes, because, of course, once I got there I had a really nice time and I actually learned a lot.
I'm now much more comfortable with a rotary cutter. I understand and appreciate the process of quilt piecing a little better. There were only six of us in the class, so it was very hands on and we got lots of one on one assistance. Dana, the shop owner was fantastic and very helpful even though she wasn't "officially" teaching the class. When she wasn't helping customers, she was helping us! The instructor is a SERIOUS quilter who was so very helpful and patient! I managed to find some samples of some of her quilts here. She brought some of her quilts to class and has a few for sale in the shop and they were beautiful.
I should mention that my sewing machine was not the clunkiest one there, but it was a close second. Still in the midst of a bunch of high-end machines, my old clunker held her own! Not once did it do anything weird. I don't think I embarrassed myself too much in front of the other quilting ladies...but who knows. AND my quilt was not the crappiest one because none of actually made a quilt! Just blocks. We're beginners people, cut us some slack! :) Thanks for sending the good vibes, Jack!
Needless to say, I was s0 completely thrilled once I actually completed a quilt block! Yes, I did yell out a "YAY!" when I finished it. But I think everyone else did too ;) 'cause we were all at about the same skill level. Make that all but one overachieving gal who had brought her own Christmas themed fabrics and had pre-cut them all. She made something like SIX blocks during the class when the rest of us only managed about two! Anyway, it was a very satisfying feeling of achievement when that first block came together! I can see how people get hooked on this!
Again, it was a fun day. I enjoyed myself, I enjoyed the company and I learned something new. Now, I didn't finish a quilt of course, but I do have two and a half blocks together and the know how to at least piece the front. I don't know what I'll do when it comes to to quilt it, unless I do the straight line "easy lap quilt" kind of quilting I've done once. However, I'm not sure that type of quilting is suited to this more traditional quilt.
I've signed up to participate in a block of the month club. Each month I'll get a kit and if I take it back to the club meeting (completed) the following month, I'll get another block kit. At the end of the year I'll have enough blocks for a nice, big quilt. I thought it sounded like fun and a way to keep quilting without becoming overwhelmed.
Here's a look at my two completed blocks. WOO HOO! The pattern is called charmed and I'm using 1930's reproduction fabrics.Here's a look at what the finished quilt top should look like.