Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Reflecting on 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everyone.  I hope that 2014 sees all of you healthy and happy and having lots of time for your quilting projects.  Also, I wish you time to learn a new technique and take a few new workshops.  We all have enough fabric and ideas that we really could probably manage on our own for years to come BUT in order to grow, we need some instruction!
I see quilters all the time that tell me they have 20 years of quilting experience.  In reality, they have one year's experience repeated 20 times.  Let's get out of our comfort zones this year!
I've been doing just that by experimenting in the "modern quilt" world a little bit by trying to come up with workshops that could fall under the modern quilt heading while still respecting colour and design theory.
I'm thrilled with this modern quilt that my hubby came up with the name for..... Ladders!  In this photo the binding hasn't been sewn down yet.


Unfortunately, when I quilted it on my Juki, it became a mess.  Yesterday I quilted a crib quilt and had the same problems.  So......either I completely lost my skills over Christmas or there is something terribly wrong.  The only thing I changed was the brand of basting spray that I was using.  Perhaps I should have used a heavier coat than I'm used to.  It may not be the spray but I'm going to go back to my usual brand and see if the problem goes away.

Over the Christmas break I had a friend and neighbour tell me that she wanted to learn to quilt by making some placemats.  We had a wonderful time!  The problem is that I forgot to take her photo with her placemats.   We have another quilter!






With the new year comes the year end accounting....not my strong suit so it's a good thing that I'm married to an accountant.  Reviewing expenses and contracts from 2013 brought back great memories with visits to guilds and groups all over Canada.

I've had some "interesting" experiences too.  I have to say that I LOVE being in the classroom.  There isn't anything I like more than a classroom full of quilters that are ready and willing to learn something new.  Having said that, there seems to be a noticeable change in the way out of town quilting instructors are being treated.  Friends that are also professional instructors tell me that I'm not alone in this observation.  When I first began to teach, teachers were treated like guests.  In some cases now, we are treated like television channels.... just do your thing and get lost.  I've driven for 3 hours to give an evening lecture at a meeting that ends at 10:00 p.m. only to have to drive back home again because no one was willing to billet me.  One meeting wouldn't even give me a glass of water saying "We just have coffee."  UM!  One billet locked me into my accommodation area.  Yup, a slide bolt on her side.  Freaky!   Another didn't have running water in the bathroom I was assigned.  
I'm not a diva, I promise.  I just need a clean bed in a quiet room and a place to have a shower before I teach that day.  Trust me, everyone will enjoy a workshop much more if I'm rested and showered!
If you happen to be the workshop coordinator for your group, please CHECK THE ACCOMMODATIONS before you let your teacher stay there.  Just because someone volunteers to host doesn't mean they actually know what's required.  Shall I tell you about staying with the "cat lady" and all the flea bites I had?????
For the most part I am treated very well when billeted.  It only takes one to make retirement look good.
I'd love to show you more pictures but my computer is stuck trying to download the placemat photos. Hubby (also my I.T. guy) is out so I'll leave those for my next post.
We are experiencing some severe weather here.  Good quilting weather though.....
Stay warm everyone!