Saturday, April 16, 2011

Becky Goldsmith Class

Last night my quilt guild was lucky enough to host a lecture by Becky Goldsmith of Piece 'O Cake Designs - click here to read her blog. It was very inspiring and I particularly enjoyed how she showed the development of one of her quilts from beginning to end, and explained her process for selecting colours and fabrics. I took this photo during her slide show in a dark auditorium and am amazed at how well it turned out.
Today was a cold and rainy day...just perfect for enjoying my third hand applique class (the first two were landscape projects).

This photo shows Becky's teaching set up, with a video camera over her working area, which is projected onto the large screen, so that every student could easily see every step of the lessons she taught.

I must say that this is one of the most challenging things I have tried to learn in quilting so far...yes, way harder than machine quilting for me! I love hand work, especially beading and hand embroidery, but man these pieces were small and it was tricky! There is a particular way to hold the fabric and the needle in order to get the nicest stitches and to inflict less strain on your hands. This is a photo of my hands trying to improve my technique. Oh, and the ginger cookie was helping my technique also!

The pins were pretty much microscopic! My regular silk pin is on the left, in the middle is one of the applique pins I purchased, and on the right is the 1/2" proper applique pin to use.

This is Becky's block that we were trying to learn.

So far I have finished one leaf, and one little stem.  My second stem doesn't join up to where it is supposed to so I guess I'm taking that one off and moving it to the left about 1/2"!
It doesn't look like much to show you for all my effort, but there were a lot of steps to get to that point, as I guess you know if you do applique.

I'm still not sure if I could love this or not...I think I would need to work with it quite a bit more and see if it becomes relaxing at some point!

I have to say that Becky's applique and machine quilting is the most beautiful I have ever seen and it was thrilling to see close up. On the right is a photo of the back of her quilt, and shows how she quilts around the shapes and fills in every space with quilting.

On the left is a close up of her amazing stitching and just look at those tiny circles. I'm tackling those next....yikes!


Mary Lou Casada said...

Oh! How exciting! I'd love to see Becky in action like that. The Piece O' Cake video was how I learned to needle-turn applique. I love their techniques -- I'd tried every other way, and this is the one that "clicked" for me. There's about a dozen of their quilts one my "hope I live long enough to do" list! LOL Your stems look great! Keep at it! :-) and it will get easier and more relaxing -- AND more rewarding! :-D
Mary Lou

Appalachian Mercantile said...

Stick with it. The more you do it, the easier it gets! You will grow to loooove those applique pins! I do! They don't stick out and catch your thread when you are stitching....


Diane said...

oh what a treat for you! Love the applique...from afar.

Plum Cox said...

I'm glad that it's not just me who finds somethings too tiny to believe feasible! Stick with it - I'm sure that you'll get great results.
Thanks for sharing the workshop set up too - it looks like a great way to see what's going on.
Good luck!

Ellen said...

It is terric that you were able to take part in the workshop. I love applique quilts but so far I have not attempted any. Looks like you have a great start from such a wonderful, experienced teacher.

Debbie said...

How wonderful to spend three days with Becky Goldsmith. I have lots of her patterns and books. Good luck with those tiny pieces.

Anonymous said...

I have enjoyed her CD but to actually have her!
You have been busy catching up lately...good for you!I have been spending more time in my sewing room too to get things done before the "be outside and work"weather comes along.Continued success on the IOP(get r done)and the rest of your wish list.
Northern blog stalker

Jean said...

How fun! is it needle turned applique or a new type? it is always fun to learn a new skill! Thanks for sharing.

Thelma said...

I'm green with envy, what a wonderful opportunity, good for you for attending and trying something new! Good Luck, I just love hand applique!

LuAnn said...

I took a class from her a few years ago, and she is wonderful. I seem to remember the project was a dog. I'm not sure what happened to him, but I did learn a lot from her.

antique quilter said...

wow to take a class with her I would be honored, I have always admired her work.
beautiful hand applique
thanks for sharing

Becky said...

Sounds like a fabulous class!

Sew Create It - Jane said...

Looks very inspirational! I have their DVD which I've just remembered I've only 1/2 watched...must go back and have a look :o)