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!