Sunday, January 19, 2014

Talking and Teaching

It's tax season, for the last time for me, and this year I'm the "office leader", which means even more hours at work, as if that were possible.  So while I haven't created a whole lot so far this year, I have been "quilty" busy.

At the January quilt guild meeting of the Heritage Quilters of Huntsville,  I was the guest speaker and did a PowerPoint lecture on:    HOUSTON!  The Largest Quilt Show in the US.

George R Brown Convention Center, Houston, TX

Knowing I had this job coming up, I took many photos at Houston this past year.  Putting them together into a comprehensive look at Market and Festival, but keeping it to no more than an hour, took some doing.  We took a tour of the building, since I know many people come to Festival and never leave the first floor.  There's lots more to see and do on the 2nd and 3rd floors, especially the 3rd floor where all the classes, samplers, forums, lectures and luncheons take place.  I rarely get OFF the 3rd floor for the 13 days I am working there in the Education department.  I've been to Houston, Market and Festival for the past 18 years and hope to go for many more. 

The lecture went well, I thought, and I cleared out several years of tote bags with goodies inside when we ended the lecture with a "swag" raffle drawing.  About a dozen happy people got a gift.

Two days later I did one of my most favorite things:  I taught a quilting class at my local quilt shop, Patches & Stitches.  The project was "Southern Star" by Calico Carriage Quilt Designs.  There were 9 students somewhat packed into the classroom but everyone kept a good attitude and all got a lot accomplished in the all-day class.  Here are a few shots of them in action:

Susan with one quarter of her center--My class sample is behind her

Emily with one quarter of her center

Connie's first one quarter of her center

Vicki with her first quarter of the center
In the morning we started on the center, making one quarter.  At home they will repeat this 3 more times for the complete center.

After lunch, we moved on to the side sections:

Joyce's side and center, bright!

Diane's side and center, she'll continue the orange in the borders
Linda did neutral batiks, very dramatic!

Susan, with both center and side, to get the idea what it will look like--King size!

Audra, with side and center pinned together for effect--the center print is the border

Ferne used batiks, the yellow center is fabulous!
My teaching style is to offer several way to do things when appropriate, and encourage everyone to find the method that works best for them.  My motto:  "I want the fastest method that gives me the results I want."  What's fastest for me, might not be best for a new quilter. 

One of the fun things I do in class is to encourage everyone to immediately confess if they sew something incorrectly.  I use that as a "teachable moment" for the rest of the class and then I rip it out!  My goal is to get each student as far in class as she can get that day.  And it's discouraging to rip out in class, so I do it, allowing them to keep on sewing.

We had fun, great quilts will come from this good start, and the students were all gracious in their comments to me after class.  I love to teach and see happy students at the end of the day.

I did manage to get the last of my little applique' blocks sewn last night and, after rearranging the blocks almost incessantly, think this is my final layout:

When I get a few minutes, I'll finish sewing the lower right portion together.  Haven't decided about borders yet.

Linking up to Patchwork Times Design Wall Monday.

Let's quilt!



  1. It was a great program, Barbara -- you did a terrific job! You've got some great accomplishments posted here! And your students did well, also!! :)

  2. Wish I could have been there for your program. I'm sure you did a splendid job, as always. That's a great pix of GRB.

    1. Tanya, it was fun and my Education Team pals were featured in several shots. They got the complete trip, from how to get there, where to sleep, what to eat, and all the good quilty stuff too!

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  4. Love the Star quilt and the Peter and Paul blocks. We could use some of that sunshine in the Midwest.

  5. Beautiful work Barbara - I love the appliqué quilt. Congratulations to you to be able to teach and share your love of quilting with others. It's my dream to get out and do the same ;). Take care now.

  6. Hi, Barbara. Would you consider posting your Houston Power Point online somehow, maybe as a download? I would love to go someday. Actually, I'd love just to be able to take a class with someone as talented as you. The Bernina dealer closest to me doesn't have a strong quilting class offering (they emphasize speed and techniques requiring more accessory purchases over traditional techniques and advanced skill building) and there isn't a close by quilt shop that I know of. Maybe I wouldn't be so scared of planning a Houston Quilting Immersion if I could learn more about what to expect ahead of time. :-)

    1. Not after the many hours of work I put into preparing it. Hope to be able to present it to other guilds. I'll be happy to answer any questions you have, just email me!

  7. Loved the idea of the Houston power point. What a great YouTube presentation that would make for those of us who will never get to go. And you class looked like it made some very happy quilters who will have wonderful quilts.